I got a phone call yesterday from the contractor our local Home Depot uses to install windows. He said that our windows are ready, and he wanted to set an appointment for when to install them. It didn’t take long for us to agree on the morning of June 30.
We finally got the guy out here (Thursday, after two appointments that he no-showed without calling us) to measure the windows we wanted to try to get on this round. We had him measure four windows, two on the north side and two on the south side. If we got them all replaced, it would set us up for some nice straight-through ventilation on mild days.
Yesterday, Home Depot called and said they were ready to talk to us about choosing the windows we want. We went out there in the early afternoon, and after looking at the options we chose the Anderson Low-E windows, and were able to afford three of them on this order. We’ll still get the ventilation, because two of the replacements are going on the north side, and we already had two windows replaced on the south side. This is huge progress – to the tune of $1,340 USD.
Oh, and another thing. Window World took 6-8 weeks (that was the official estimate – the last window we got from them was ordered in early October and wasn’t installed until the end of January) to prepare a window for installation. Home Depot is getting our Anderson windows in about half the time – 3-5 weeks.
After the frustration of not reaching the nearest office for over 3 months, calling the office in KC, KS, and getting passed up to the regional sales manager, I still couldn’t place my order. The company I’ve been so frustrated by is Window World. If possible, I’m not going to do business with them ever again.
After talking with the regional sales manager for Window World, I called the local Home Depot. I called them because I remembered getting a flyer in the mail a few weeks ago touting their replacement window business.
It only took about 4 minutes for me to be talking one-on-one with the local sales manager in their replacement windows/doors department. I described our situation and told him what the replacement windows we’ve already installed look like, and he was confident that he could replicate the windows with high-quality facsimiles from 2-3 different companies he orders windows through. According to the website, one of those companies is a subsidiary of the Anderson windows company.
Someone should be arriving within a week to measure our next replacements. We’re confident of getting at least 3 windows with this order, but that could be 5 or 6 depending on the price differences.
I wrote this post last Friday, and though much of this post is negated by the events of yesterday morning, but I thought I might go ahead with sharing our thoughts in case it might help some of you if you’re doing home improvements too. – V
As of last Friday, we have enough money in the “windows” set-aside account to cover 4 replacement windows, if the prices hold steady. We still haven’t heard back from the company about when there will be agents available to take orders for this service area, but we’re going to be ready when they are.
We were looking at our utility use last week, and made an amazing discovery. Compared to how much electricity we used in the same month last year, we used 200kw less in February this year. That is a powerful incentive to keep moving on the windows, wouldn’t you say?
As for which windows to replace, I know we previously had thought about replacing all of the windows in the one room of the basement, and there are still compelling reasons for doing that, but we had another realization. With the exception of the 4-window panel in the kitchen, we now have enough to replace all of the big windows in the house in one shot – updating and insulating about 2/3rds of the house all at the same time. If we hang an old blanket across the doorway of the kitchen temporarily, the rest of the house will cost nearly nothing to keep cool this summer (if they can get the windows replaced before then).
I think the basement can wait another year. Then we work on finishing up the tuckpointing. If things keep going like this, we’ll have this house update finished before the house turns 90 (it’s 85 years old, now).
It has been a busy morning here. I’ve got several major updates to share.
1. We’ve decided that this year’s tax refund is going entirely to windows – specifically 3 that affect one room down in the basement. I called the window people this morning to schedule the visit for measuring them, and am waiting for a call back.
2. I got a call from my ex-wife. Our daughter (who is *ahem* over 21) had recently gone down to Texas with her boyfriend. She had a job up here that she transferred to a location down there so she could stay with her boyfriend, who wanted to get “closer to home” to look for work down there.
UPDATE: After they got to Texas, her boyfriend hooked up with a gal he knew back in high school (or some such) and they paid for my daughter to get a bus back to her mom’s house. She is now nearly homeless (nobody around has room to put her up for very long) and jobless, and it sounds like she lost nearly everything she took to Texas with her.
3. The city we live in is under an order from KDOT to put a sidewalk in along the 4-lane road that runs right in front of our house. One of the city councilmen stopped by here a few weeks ago to talk to my wife and I about the plans, and told us that the big tree beside our driveway wouldn’t be a problem, even though I already knew about the sidewalk order and was happy to let them remove the tree if needed. Today a guy from the city facilities office came by, and he said the other guy was wrong – they do need to remove the tree (it is one of two on the proposed route that absolutely MUST go), but not the mail box (we just spent $500 on the mailbox a few years ago). I told this guy that we’re happy to cooperate, and he said they may be over to begin removing the tree as early as Tuesday next week. Whew – I’m glad that they are removing it. I’ve been eyeing it closely every winter since we moved in – it has one section that seriously looks like it’s about to fall down into the street. If that were to happen, it would block at least 2 lanes (both south-bound) and might seriously damage any vehicles passing under it. The city is saving us about $4,000 on tree care here!
I got a phone call yesterday afternoon, and the people installing our newest replacement window will arrive this afternoon to do that. It may happen as early as 1pm (1300 hrs). This brings us to 2 replaced, 11 upstairs windows left to go. We’re considering spacing them out a bit more, and ordering 2 at a time in the future, so each visit makes more of a difference for us, and they don’t have to drive as much. Well, it’s something to think on.