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A dozen surprises about fiberglass windows

Date Posted: Monday, 30 April 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

Think you know everything about fiberglass windows? At Hall’s Window Center, we’re so crazy about this option, we tend to collect all kinds of fun facts that still have the power to surprise and delight even the most seasoned window shopper:

1. Fiberglass windows are in great company. They’re made of the same lightweight, ultra-strong material as skis, surfboards and canoes. The common thread? A love for the outdoors, of course.

2. Fiberglass was first used in the 1930s for home furnace filters and insulation. It’s also been used for sound control in aircrafts and automobiles. It was even a go-to material in curtains until consumers decided that wasn’t their favorite idea. You could say it makes a better window than a covering.

3. Fiberglass is labeled a “low embodied energy” project, which means it doesn’t use a lot of the earth’s energy to create it.

4. How is fiberglass made? Put on your Science Guy hat for a moment: The manufacturer pulls activated polyester resins through a heated die. Strands of glass or glass mats are then impregnated with the resins.

5. Some versions contain 40 percent reclaimed wood fiber by weight.

6. But because most fiberglass largely consists of spun glass fibers, it reacts to temperature changes in almost the same way as the glass panes in the window. The result? More airtight windows! Also, all of the components expand and contract at the same rate, so your frame and glass aren’t competing against each other in extreme weather conditions. That’s a contest where the homeowner loses every time.

7. Foam-filled fiberglass has the highest insulation value of any window frame material.

8. Fiberglass windows can be up to nine times stronger than vinyl windows, and a 2007 case study found that their lifespan is 38 percent longer than vinyl. So expect 50-year guarantees, which may be the longest product guarantee across any industry.

9. Since vinyl is not as strong as fiberglass, it needs more material to create a frame for the glass. Fiberglass, by contrast, can be thinner, leaving more room to let more sunshine in.

10. Fiberglass (with polyvinyl chloride coating) improves glass performance during a fire by increasing the time needed for edge cracks to develop.

11. Fiberglass windows have a 74 percent resale value on average for your home, compared to vinyl’s 70 percent. Grab your calculator and see how that difference adds up!

12. When Consumer Reports tested doors with blows from a battering ram, the fiberglass version with an upgraded lock and strike system was the only one that withstood the damage.

How did you do? Come on in the Hall’s and let’s get nerdy with these facts and how they apply to your home! Visit our showroom to discuss your window replacement options in Sacramento, CA.

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Yes, you can enjoy designer windows

Date Posted: Monday, 23 April 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

You chose the woodgrain for your cabinets and the color of your appliances. You’ve painted your walls, selected the furniture and artwork, and carefully studied flooring options. You and the architect may have even designed a curved staircase and added a mudroom to the original plans.

So why would you accept standard windows?

At Hall’s Window Center, we love breaking the news to homeowners that this is yet another area you can customize to your unique house.

And we’re not just talking paint colors. We mean the shape and even the function of your windows. For instance, if you’re into miniature gardening, your window can function as a window box, a mini hothouse, if you will. If a bay window seat, perfect for a lazy afternoon with a book, fuels your imagination, we can put a lot of light on that situation. We can add cladding, dividers for unique light patterns, and switch out the hardware to reflect any mood you want to create. Heck, even how they open is … well, open to debate.

The process is as easy as playing with Lego blocks but twice as much fun. Our team at Hall’s Window Center is happy to walk you through a variety of rectangles, squares, half circles, circles and even arches in various sizes for mix and match entertainment. And don’t forget the outside – you may not know what an ogee lug is at this moment, but once you see the subtle chalet effect this corner decoration can bring to the checkrail, you could just fall in love.

As you can see, the challenge isn’t finding options you like – it’s how to select your final configuration!

So give some thought to these questions to keep your design time stress free:

1. Is there an architectural theme you want to match? 2. Do you want to reflect the home’s history? 3. Will your windows be works of art, contributing color and design, or will their function be to complement other interior design elements? 4. Do you lean more toward classical architecture, funky shapes, sleek styles, country worn or something else altogether? 5. Does anyone in your home live with physical challenges? 6. Will you use your windows often for cross-ventilation? 7. Do you plan to hang drapes or leave the windows uncovered?

Together, we’ll create a window that will delight you for years to come! Get in touch with the professionals at Hall's Window Center to help you choose the best designer windows in Sacramento for your next project.

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Fiberglass vs. Vinyl: A Knock-out Decision

Date Posted: Monday, 16 April 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

Hollywood loves a superhero showdown, and we’re the first to admit Batman v Superman was a brilliant movie.

Here at Hall’s Window Center, we aren’t above rooting for our own bigger-than-life matchups among products. So grab your capes, your shields, your swords and see why fiberglass wins the epic battle of window replacement in Sacramento, California:

It’s stronger: Fiberglass blocks thermal transfer nearly 700 times better than aluminum to help reduce your heating and cooling bills. Not even kryptonite can make that claim.

It’s smarter: Both vinyl and fiberglass can expand, which is a good thing for insulation’s sake. But vinyl expands four times greater than glass, which puts pressure on the frame over time and creates gaps and drafts. Fiberglass, on the other hand, has glass fibers in it and expands at the same rate as glass, so they are always in perfect balance.

It’s friendlier: Fiberglass replacement windows are made from a sustainable resource: sand. It’s like giving The Caped Crusader a dog.

It’s timeless: Thanks to fiberglass’ talent for mimicking wood, it fits right in with older generation homes as easily as Bruce Wayne gets along with Alfred.

It’s prettier: You can argue all day whether Ben Affleck or Henry Cavill is easier on the eyes, but fiberglass’ exterior, thanks to factory magic, doesn’t fade, flake, blister or peel, so you don’t need to fuss with painting them to provide an extra layer of protection. And because it holds its hue, your color choices are darker and richer, which adds an eye-catching depth to your home.

Beauty isn’t just skin deep: Fiberglass’ flexibility means your window corner seams are rounded for a flawless appearance, as opposed to a welded seam. In fact, window manufacturers can mold fiberglass to nearly any configuration you can dream up. Windows suddenly became a life statement rather than another fact of life.

It’s immortal: Fiberglass composite windows hold the longest lifespan on the market, lasting up to eight times longer than some of the leading vinyl window brands.

And when it comes to either fiberglass or vinyl, nothing bugs them. Their inert substances are not tempting to termites or carpenter ants, so Mother Nature doesn’t dine on your dime.

Looking for a sidekick? Stop by Hall’s Window Center and let us show you the super options at your disposal when it comes to finding home ownership nirvana.

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What To Expect During New Window Installation

Date Posted: Monday, 09 April 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

Most homeowners understand remodeling projects—and dread them for the interruption to their lives. And because window replacement in Sacramento isn’t a process most families schedule as often as they would, say, change carpets or replace major appliances or restore gutters, the installation is often a mystery.

But the surprise is that it’s not as disruptive as you probably imagine.

For instance, this isn’t a dusty job, nor will you live with plastic sheeting covering open spaces in your home, as if you’d broken a car window and duct taped a solution for a few days. Windows are removed and installed in a progression, so you’ll sport a window in your frames at all times.

As for noise, expect some occasionally hammer blows and the sound of power tools in short bursts.

Here’s what you can expect after you select your window style:

Prep

Yes, there is a role you have to play before Hall’s crews arrive. Start by removing any ornaments, decorations, or stickers from your current sills and panes. Move any nearby furniture, and if you have shelves with mementos nearby, it’s not a bad idea to relocate anything breakable. These things have a way of vibrating off their surfaces no matter how delicate the crew tries to be.

You’ll want to talk to your Hall’s rep in advance to determine where to stack the old windows temporarily, and look at weather forecasts to determine an optimal time for the appointment. None of us want to deal with muddy conditions if we can avoid that!

You certainly don’t need to be at home on installation day, but we enjoy your company if you do. However, it’s always helpful if you can arrange for a day of fun away from the house for children and pets, whose curiosity don’t always make for safe conditions for them or our installers. And if you work from home, be sure to have us tackle your office windows first so that you can make the most of the 9-5 hours with your own clients.

Welcoming us to your home


It goes without saying that you can expect our team to arrive on time, introduce themselves, use tarps and drop cloths and clean up after the job is done, including broom sweeping hard surfaces.

You’ll want to check the labels on the window orders to verify this is the right delivery. It’s a good idea to save your window warranty information and individual window labels (like the NFRC label) in a secure drawer or other location where you can find them in the future. And then stay on hand as a resource for the foreman, but the installers are professionals, so you won’t need to supervise each step. By the end of the day, you can expect to have as many as 10 new windows in place. Once all windows on your order have been swapped out, the team will tackle installing exterior trim on your windows. Most jobs are completed at the end of day two.

So, now that you have a better vision of what will happen, stop by Hall’s Window Center to discuss bringing this picture to life at your residence.

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Tips For Maintaining Your New Windows

Date Posted: Monday, 02 April 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

Ah, the smell of new windows.

Well, maybe that’s actually the fragrance of spring flowers drifting in through your open windows, but that’s one of the reasons you made this investment in the first place. New windows bring the world to life inside your home.

So, naturally, you want to preserve that fresh excitement as long as possible. Hall's Window Center supports that goal, of course, but we also understand that few homeowners have time on their hands for mundane things like cleaning.

The good news is, maintaining your new windows in Sacramento can be a snap, no matter which material you settled on.

Wood measures

California’s coastal areas wage a battle against salt, rain and wind that will dry out wood window structures more quickly than inland residents. So beach lovers might want to set aside a few hours every month to give their window frames some loving care. The rest of Californians can probably get by with once a season.

Start by combining one tablespoon of mild liquid detergent with one quart of warm water. Simply soak a sponge in the solution, wring it out and wipe down the wood, then rinse with a wet cloth. Don’t give in to the temptation to use a dry towel, as a stray particle can scratch the surface that way.

While you’re there, check for mildew or peeling paint—signals that you need to refinish the surface before problems escalate. Don’t panic if you do; it’s a DIY project that requires a bit of fine-grit sandpaper and mild elbow grease to remove the mildew; be sure to fill in any cracks with a wood filler. A thin coat of a latex or oil-based paint or outdoor wood stain—whichever matches your appearance—finishes the job.

Aluminum and Vinyl care

The list of what not to do is longer than the maintenance suggestions for this type of window—perfect for those with time constraints. You want to avoid petroleum-based, abrasive and caustic cleaners, for starters; the one tablespoon of mild soap and one quart of warm water is perfect for these windows, too. And you only need to wipe them down with a soft cloth and rinse the same way—blasting them with a high-pressure spray nozzle might be fun for the young-at-heart, but it’s not especially good for the frames themselves.

The glass factor

It’s another job for mild soap and water and a clear water rinse. You’ll want to remove screens and perhaps take a soft brush to them if dirt has collected in the filter, as well. Again, gentle is the watchword on this activity. You can use a regular household vacuum, or a power vac if you have one handy, to remove dirt from the sill and track areas.

And definitely take this opportunity to make certain that drainage or weep holes are not clogged. (Weep holes are located outside the window or door in the bottom of the frame. Ask Hall’s representative to show you exactly where to look.) You can use a soft bottlebrush to clear these holes. Among the things you can ditch:

• Don’t wash glass in direct sunlight. Which means you can use the premium hours of the day at he beach, in your pool, enjoying iced tea with a neighbor.
• Avoid petroleum-based cleaners or caustic chemicals on your glass.
• Put away razor blades, putty knives and abrasive pads. None of these old-fashioned ways of cleaning glass apply to today’s surfaces.
• Sorry, no high-pressure spray nozzles to rinse the panes, either. But there’s probably a deck somewhere that you can sandblast into next week.

Periodic maintenance


Along with cleaning, you’ll want to regularly lubricate the moving parts to your windows—in salty locations, “regularly” can be as often as once a month. That’s a great time to check the seal on your weather stripping as well. And to keep your window pains in tip-top condition by the shore, apply a light car wax to the panes and exterior once a year after you clean these surfaces. Otherwise, you will end up sealing in a corrosive element, inviting it to damage your windows further.

For more advice, drop in to visit our representatives at Hall’s Window Center. It’s possible you could even talk us into a cleaning demonstration, but fair warning: We read The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, too.

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What you (really) gain with new patio doors

Date Posted: Monday, 26 March 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

Patios this decade have grown up into beautiful living spaces in their own right, adding resale value to homes across the state.

But as homeowners draw up plans and compare prices on fire pits, outdoor ovens and covered seating, they often leave out an important ingredient in the picture: Just how will you access this outdoor paradise?

Of course there will be a door (few humans have mastered the art of walking through walls) whether you are remodeling a patio, a veranda or a simple porch, but your choice of style and materials will make a big impact on how you use that space. This option is more than just another entryway —it’s a functional work of art.

The material list is similar to window frames, and with the same benefits:

• Fiberglass – They may look like wood but they can withstand extreme changes in weather and moisture.

• Wood – If your home boasts a traditional feel, you should consider the rich appeal of real wood.

• Aluminum – Aluminum patio doors offer a strong but lightweight choice at budget-friendly pricing.

• Vinyl – Vinyl doesn’t fade, flake, peel or rot. Homeowners with patios facing the direct sun appreciate this option.

• Mix –It is possible to have fiberglass, aluminum or vinyl on the outside and wood on the inside, too.

The real fun comes in choosing the style, which is where you bring both the interior and exterior of your home to life. Check out these advantages:

• Swinging patio doors: Swinging (aka hinged) doors include the popular French doors, perfect for homeowners who want to treat the entryway as a picture frame for the landscape. It provides a definitive break that blends, say, a traditional interior with a more contemporary patio. Homeowners also applaud a swinging door over a traditional hinge because its larger width and flexibility can handle the traffic as children, pets and hostesses carrying trays of food cross the threshold multiple times a day. This is an excellent option for families who hold big gatherings at their home.

• Bi-fold patio doors: A bi-fold door offers the modern, low-maintenance, energy-efficient and space-saving option to the table. This accordion style can be customized in multiple configurations using two to eight panels that neatly slide and fold away for full access. This option best matches modern patio features, say the design experts at HGTV.

• Sliding glass patio doors: This is the option you thought you were stuck with, right? It’s true they’re widely popular, but homeowners choose sliding glass because they require less peripheral space than swinging patio doors and still offer an unobstructed view. In fact, they seamlessly marry indoors with the outdoors in all seasons. They bring the most natural light of all your door options, thanks to the fact they can function as a wall if you choose, and are easy to maintain in the process. It’s hard to beat lower utility bills and the natural mood boosting effect of sunlight at the same time.

Sliding glass doors in Sacramento are a great match for contemporary homes, says HGTV, and they create no obstacles at all to furniture placement, inside or out.

Drop into Hall’s Window Center today and let us help you find the best patio door that suits your home and lifestyle!

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Five Warning Signs That It’s Time To Replace Your Windows

Date Posted: Monday, 19 March 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

At Hall’s Window Center, we understand that purchasing windows is a big budget decision. We have families, too, so we understand what else the money represents: vacations, traveling sports teams, dance lessons, Saturday afternoon on the golf course.

So it’s natural to put off pulling the trigger until … well, the window fails. But your house sends warning signals long before that stage, and heeding the message can save you big bucks on damage repair:

• You find condensation or frost between the window panes. This usually is a cry that the seal is broken. Also look for water around the frame at this time, as that’s a sign that mold, mildew or rot—and maybe all three—is close behind.

• You can’t clean the fog off your panes. It’s yet another sign the seal has been compromised, most likely because the frame is warped, and unfortunately, this isn’t a cleaning issue. Your view is permanently affected at this stage.

• When you touch the window glass during the summer and it is hot to the touch, and freezing when you run this same test in the winter months. Most homeowners first notice this phenomenon because they reach for a blanket to wrap up when sitting closer to a window in January.

• The sash sticks when you try to open and close the window, or you’re a victim of the opposite: they refuse to stay open at all. Nothing makes you jump like the sound of a window thumping closed when the prop slid away. With wood windows, it means the frame is swelling; in other situations it can reveal that your foundation has shifted or the window foundation is failing. So while greasing the skids, so to speak, might work today, it’s not a solution for next month.

• You need a stiff drink before opening your utility bill. Unfortunately, the argon gas used between layers of glass leaks out at a rate of about 1 percent per year, so your insulation return does diminish. If you’ve had those windows for 30 years, that’s a decent heating/cooling loss. If you notice condensation in the middle of the glass, you could save yourself the liquor costs—this is the earliest warning sign you’re low on gas.

Know, too, that this is a project you can spread out over several years to minimize the effect on your monthly budget. Our Hall’s Window Center crew is happy to help you find ways to approach and adjust costs to ensure your new windows in Sacramento are a joy rather than a sacrifice.

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Window shopping? Insist on transparency

Date Posted: Monday, 12 March 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

We fully understand why you put off shopping for windows and doors. If this was an easy purchase, it wouldn’t be open to rip-offs and pushy salespeople. If our industry didn’t have its share of scoundrels, the state of Oregon wouldn’t have had to crack down on deceptive sales practices at the beginning of the decade.

Hall’s Window Center knows what you’re up against because the details are on display in court documents and a quick Google search:

• Telling potential customers they are offering a "free energy audit" or inspection, when the visit is really a sales call.

• Inflated prices to hoodwink customers into thinking they were getting a deal.

• Unsubstantiated claims about energy savings.

• Failure to tell customers of their cancellation rights.

• Exaggerating the health risks associated with mold.

• Claiming windows have titanium metal-reinforced frames when they are really aluminum.

• Justifying a 300 percent markup on replacement windows by citing a survey on what real estate agents estimated it should cost.

Misleading customers is unethical and unsustainable. And since Hall’s Window Center has been in business in Rancho Cordova for 40 years, we’ve not only earned the right to show our face in this town, but we’ve also mastered the art of not bugging you.

Because, let’s face it, you walk into our showroom to eyeball the possibilities, dream a little and ask questions to see which options fall into which category. You didn’t get up this morning looking to adopt a salesperson to dog your every step. Nor do you particularly want to take a quiz at the exit, with a goal of passing to become a window expert yourself. And heaven knows your presence doesn’t mean you are inviting the Gestapo to strong-arm you into buying a product that isn’t what you can afford or even want.

So we train our sales staff in knowing the difference between high pressure and being your 4-1-1. We value smiles over slick comebacks and conversation above come-ons. And we certainly think hoodwinking should be an arrestable offense.

But we do offer our customers a voluntary feedback form to offer criticism and advice on their experience. Marketing gurus know that you can expect, on average, a 10 to 15 percent return. Hall’s Window Center receives 63 percent of our satisfaction surveys—and we post the reviews unaltered on our website.

And our owners have posted their private cell phone numbers on the website, so you have your own personal Batphone during the process. No matter what we’re doing on our end when that phone rings, you become the instant priority.

Take us up on our offer and stop by Hall’s Window Service in Rancho Cordova today to see what transparency should look like. Our satisfied customers can attest that we are the most trusted and reliable window replacement company in Sacramento.

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It’s official: Hall’s Window Center now recognized nationally for its Super Service

Date Posted: Monday, 05 March 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

Hall’s Window Center would like to thank the Academy…eh, forget the Hollywood crowd. This time, you are the star.

Hall’s Window Center is proud to announce that we’ve earned the home service industry’s Angie’s List Super Service Award (SSA), a recognition that honors service professionals who have maintained exceptional service ratings and reviews on Angie’s List in 2017.

Hall's Window Center Angie's List Super Service Award 2017

“These pros are top-notch and absolutely deserve recognition for the trustworthy and exemplary customer service they exhibited in the past year and overall,” says Angie’s List founder Angie Hicks.

We’re blushing.

To earn SSA distinction, winners have met strict eligibility requirements, which include maintaining an “A” rating in overall grade, recent grade and review period grade. The SSA winners must also pass a background check and record a current trade license attestation.

And that’s all thanks to you, for opening your doors to us and allowing Hall’s to be part of your story.

Since 1976, our focus has been and always will be customer service. Our family-owned business wasn’t built by being the fastest or the cheapest. We grew by going out of our way to make sure every single customer is completely thrilled.

A total of 1,184 residential clients have left testimonials to their service at our website in recent years; we don’t filter the comments because we invite honest, open feedback. It’s yet another reason we offer a 10-year service guarantee, in-house company-trained window installers in Sacramento and a dedicated project coordinator whose only job is facilitating your project from start to finish.

So we appreciate the vote of confidence at Angie’s List, and we look forward to you holding our feet to the fire to continue to deliver throughout this decade and beyond!

Drop in at Hall’s Window Center showroom at 11297 White Rock Road in Rancho Cordova any time and let us serve you.

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The Secrets Behind How Windows Increase Your Comfort

Date Posted: Monday, 26 February 2018 08:00
Posted By: Michael Bruel1

You’ve heard it said that new windows add to a home’s comfort. It’s easy to assume why on first glance. After all, most of us are far more at ease in our homes when we aren’t evading hot and cold spots throughout—and the energy bills to match!

Today’s windows bring a lot of technology solutions to your home’s temperature control. It starts with low-E coated glass, which features a film on the inside to protect from moisture build-up. This move alone has proven in tests to be 45 percent more efficient during the winter than ordinary dual pane glass, and can save you as much as 25 percent on your energy bills depending on your climate. Composite frames then boast insulating properties of wood. And argon gas between panes really turns a window into an insulating feature by preventing outside temperatures penetrating to undo your indoor settings.

It adds up to a far more efficient answer than fleece blankets in the winter and running ceiling fans while chugging gallons of ice tea in the summer.

But windows’ contributions to your peace don’t stop there. Windows are also your go-to feature for:

Soundproofing. The same insulation properties that keep the temperatures even absorb outside noise, keeping you cocooned in a restful environment. After all, we all enjoy a well-manicured neighborhood, but few of us want the sound of the lawn mower or the dog next door to drown out the Giants game.

Décor. You’ve chosen your property carefully. Now frame it perfectly with a picture window! It’s an excellent way to make a space feel larger—and far less expensive than actually building on to your home.

Health. New windows open and close with ease, bringing in a fresh breeze. Scientists say clean, fresh air circulation promotes clearer thinking and better breathing.

Mood. Décor and paint colors may reflect your personality, but few things start your day off right like a ray of sunshine. Big, open windows transform those darker, drearier corners of your house. Nearly everything looks better in natural light.

And the benefits don’t stop there. What you can see through the window is as important as the sun itself. For instance, environmental psychologists are discovering that views of natural settings improve focus. Similar studies claim that children with ADD are more focused after being able to observe green space.

And from VIA Architecture, the firm behind many West Coast commercial projects:

• Adequate sunlight improves students’ grades.

• When exposed to more sunlight, retirement home residents have less “cognitive decline” (+ have overall improved brain function).

• Lighting in your home that transitions from day to night will help you not only to stay awake but also to sleep at night.

Sounds comfortable to us! To explore how the right windows in Sacramento can improve your life, stop by Hall’s Window Center today.

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The Hottest Trends in Doors

Date Posted: Monday, 19 February 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

The world has changed since the last time you hung a door, and that’s a good thing.

Now, instead of settling for your best option, you will find the challenge lies in narrowing down the choices for the best entry door in Sacramento, CA.

That’s because doors have become a bona fide architectural feature throughout homes, making them beautiful as well as functional. Check out these popular door trends!

Color

Doors are a far cry from boring in 2018. Bold paint colors abound—think turquoise, lime green, yellow—especially if the house is a neutral color, according to HGTV. The one color to avoid? Red doors tend to be overdone, designers say. The fresher color is an orange or at least a gold orange.

Sound too daring for your personality? A stark black with a high gloss is still in favor, too, and homeowners in cooler climates tend to choose darker, richer shades of primary colors.

Style

Fashionable front doors fall into two distinctly different approaches, which means there’s something for everyone: ornate/decorative and informal/casual-chic. In the first category, expect to see options such as nail heads, exotic woods and even leather to tickle your imagination.

If your tastes are more laidback, you’ll likely gravitate to a French door treatment or the time-honored Craftsman with simple materials, rich stains and unique glazing patterns. You can jazz them up with an arch, too. And it’s difficult to pass up a glass decorative element these days, particularly when so many options feature this bright feature.

Planning to sell your house soon? Millennial buyers are attracted to fiberglass that mimics a wood appearance, according to reporting by Emily Kay Thompson, the editor at Window & Door.

Interior

No doubt your home has a single-panel door somewhere, and the good news is that’s still in style. This classic always blends in with its surroundings, allowing you to focus the room’s mood on whatever you want to convey. But these days, double- and triple-panel doors are readily available as well, and are usually the choice of designers who are working with a space that features intricate details, such as fluted chair rail or crown molding.

Because interior doors are increasingly used to define space, open floor plans are starting to lean toward bi-fold, double pocket and barn doors to divide a room when needed or keep it open. As an added perk, barn-type doors with sliding mounting tracks come in a variety of materials to spark your imagination. We’re talking vintage wood, chalkboard panels, even paneled zinc. Consider them as doing double duty: function and artwork within your home.

And, finally, don’t assume glass is just for windows and entryways. Many homeowners are discovering the beauty of opening up their entire homes via glass doors between rooms as well. In fact, pocket doors with glass openings are finding a lot of interest in 2018.

Drop in to Hall’s Window Center today and let us help you find a door that invites in your personality!

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10 Things to Look for in an Entry Door

Date Posted: Monday, 12 February 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

It’s only human to stroll through house displays, picking out front doors that appeal to your aesthetic senses.

But it’s savvy to consider more than a pleasant appearance. After all, many door systems would add a sparkle to your home. So here are 10 ways to help you narrow the field:

Starting Point:

1. Check your framework. We know what you’re thinking: “My current door closes, so can I get by without this investment?” If the framing is warped or the wall studs it’s nailed to are bowing and settling out of square, the answer is no. Your options are to delay the inevitable by planing the top and bottom/trimming the edges of the front door if it’s wood, or replace it if not.

2. R you high enough? The higher the R-value, the greater the door’s insulating powers. Experts say when an R-5 knocks, answer.

3. Energy Star labels count. You will automatically upgrade your insulating value if you choose steel or fiberglass over wood, but do push further for the EPA’s Energy Star seal. These doors must be independently tested and certified, so they typically go the extra mile on tight-fitting frames, energy-efficient cores and insulating glass that reduces heat transfer.

4. Plan for old age: Any door you hang will eventually show signs of wear. Look for options like an adjustable threshold (a.k.a. spring-loaded threshold) so you can more easily replace the seal to stay weather tight longer, and rails and stiles made of laminated wood covered with veneer, as these aren’t as vulnerable to warping.

Material Concerns

Wood:

5. If you purchase a stock wood door, ask for furniture-grade veneers at least 1/16 inch thick.

6. Make sure a prefinished wood door features a clear finish using polyurethane, for example. High-gloss sheens best protect painted doors. And both should be applied to the top and bottom edges to prevent the door from taking on moisture and swelling.

7. According to “This Old House,” the more intricate the carvings and molders and the thicker and wider the stiles and rails, the better the door.

Steel:

8. Make sure it has a vinyl coating if your door will be exposed to harsher weather conditions. To really up your protection, look for a wood-fiber coating or a laminated-wood veneer.

9. Check the warranty. Some manufacturers void this if you install an aluminum storm door in combination because the heat build-up in the gap can peel the finish.

Fiberglass:

10. The door should feature a thermal break to separate the inside and outside door skins. Otherwise, you could find frost on the inside surface when you wake up some mornings in January.

Let the experts at Hall's Window Center unlock the hidden side of doors and help you choose the right entry door in Sacramento today!

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How New Windows Affect Your Home’s Value

Date Posted: Monday, 05 February 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

We get it: building a dream home theater or music studio, installing an in-ground swimming pool, perhaps adding a barbecue pit would enhance your joy in homeownership. And to that, we at Hall’s Window Center say, “knock yourself out.” Life is about living.

But when it comes to boosting the sales price of your home, it’s the less sexy moves that will make a financial difference.

That’s where we come in, because we also believe life shouldn’t be about losing value.

Take the example of a homeowner on the West Coast who purchased a 1928 bungalow for $270,000, invested $100,000 in upgrades, and saw his assessed at $460,000 after the dust settled. According to ISoldMyHouse.com, a for-sale-by-owner website, spending $10,000 on windows will raise the asking price at sale time by $8,500. Meanwhile, you’re also cutting your energy bills, which will jet past the $1,500 difference for many families within the first year or so. This doesn’t count any rebates your utility company may offer for Energy Star-certified windows.

Indeed, HGTV lists replacing old windows with Energy Star-compliant vinyl windows as the fourth project of 10 must-dos if you want big dividends when it’s time to move on. But, as they point out, you can save even before that. Because these windows don’t shatter when broken, your agent might find a break on your insurance premium too.

Then there’s the curb appeal. Says one Realtor on a trade website: “I have found in the Southern California market especially that buyers look for updated windows. They make for a quicker sell at a stronger sale price.”

Why? For starters, millennials are putting a strong emphasis on green housing, which is why LifeHackers lists this advantage as third on its list of good investments for resale value. The National Association of Home Builders rates it still higher, in second place when it comes to attributes that would most influence a purchase decision. Let’s face it, new homeowners have a lot of things to pay for besides the electric bill.

“My millennial buyers usually ask for two years’ worth of utility payments,” real estate professional Joe Rivellino told Consumer Reports. “They want to know the R value on the insulation and whether the windows have low-E coatings.”

In a nutshell, energy-efficient windows increase the range of families your home appeals to.

Stop in at Hall’s Window Center for an honest discussion of how new replacement windows in Sacramento, CA can put some green back into your life as well.

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What You Need To Know About Energy-Efficiency Ratings Before Buying A Window

Date Posted: Monday, 22 January 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

It’s fun to shop for new windows in Sacramento, imagining how the variety of frames will improve your house’s curb appeal. But your contractor or sales team will also want to talk energy-efficiency ratings—terms that can leave you feeling like an outsider looking in.

At Hall’s Window Center, we’re happy to walk you through the choices and terms, but here’s a cheat sheet from the Department of Energy in case you want to brush up ahead of time.

Energy Performance Testing, Certification, and Labeling
The National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) operates a voluntary program that tests, certifies and labels windows, doors and skylights based on their energy performance ratings. The NFRC label provides a reliable way to compare products.

The NFRC label can be found on all ENERGY STAR®-qualified windows, doors and skylights, but ENERGY STAR bases its qualification only on U-factor and solar heat gain coefficient ratings:

Heat Gain and Loss

Windows, doors and skylights can gain and lose heat through

• direct conduction through the glass or glazing, frame, and/or door,
• the radiation of heat into a house (typically from the sun) and out of a house from room-temperature objects, such as people, furniture, and interior walls, and
• air leakage through and around them.

We measure and rate these properties according to these energy performance characteristics:

U-factor is the rate at which a window, door or skylight conducts non-solar heat flow. It’s usually expressed in units of Btu/hr-ft2-oF. For windows, skylights and glass doors, a U-factor may refer to just the glass or glazing alone. NFRC U-factor ratings, however, represent the entire window performance, including frame and spacer material. The lower the U-factor, the more energy-efficient the product.

Solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) 
is the fraction of solar radiation admitted through a window—either transmitted directly and/or absorbed, and subsequently released as heat inside a home. The lower the SHGC, the less solar heat it transmits and the greater its shading ability. A product with a high SHGC rating is more effective at collecting solar heat during the winter. A product with a low SHGC rating is more effective at reducing cooling loads during the summer by blocking heat gain from the sun. Your home’s climate, orientation and external shading will determine the optimal SHGC for a particular window, door, or skylight.

Air leakage
 is the rate of air movement around a window, door or skylight in the presence of a specific pressure difference across it. It’s expressed in units of cubic feet per minute per square foot of frame area (cfm/ft2). A product with a low air leakage rating is tighter.

Sunlight Transmittance

The ability of glazing to transmit sunlight into a home can be measured and rated according to these energy performance characteristics:

Visible transmittance (VT) is a fraction of the visible spectrum of sunlight (380 to 720 nanometers), weighted by the sensitivity of the human eye, that is transmitted through the glazing of a window, door or skylight. VT is expressed as a number between 0 and 1; a product with a higher VT transmits more visible light. The VT you need for a window, door, or skylight should be determined by your home's day lighting requirements and/or whether you need to reduce interior glare in a space.

Light-to-solar gain (LSG) is the ratio between the SHGC and VT. It provides a gauge of the relative efficiency of different glass or glazing types in transmitting daylight while blocking heat gains. The higher the number, the more light transmitted without adding excessive amounts of heat. This energy performance rating isn't always provided.

Drop in at Hall’s Window Center showroom at 11297 White Rock Road, Rancho Cordova, CA 95742 any time and we’ll be glad to translate what these terms mean specifically to your home.

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Yes, It Is Possible To Save Money On Fiberglass Windows

Date Posted: Monday, 15 January 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti
It sounds like a come on, but when it comes to window replacement in Sacramento, there really is such thing as transparency. And affordability.

Take, for instance, fiberglass composite windows. This material has quickly become one of the most popular window options in Sacramento, not in small part because they enhance the overall comfort and aesthetic appeal of your home. Well-known brands such as Milgard, Marvin and Pella have jumped into this space, bringing not only laboratory expertise but price competition to the market.

For starters, fiberglass windows, with their double and triple pane glass, are energy efficient—always a welcome feature in a family’s budget. Because fiberglass largely consists of spun glass fibers, it reacts to temperature changes much the same way as the glass panes in the window and expands to become more airtight. Bingo! Instant savings on your annual heating and cooling costs, especially if your home features large framing openings.

Count on fiberglass windows to require less maintenance as well, since you don’t need to repaint, and clean-up involves simple soap and water. They're resistant to temperature extremes and moisture, and they don't rust or splinter. Industry studies have shown that fiberglass windows enjoy an estimated 38 percent longer lifespan than vinyl.

No wonder recent real estate reports show that fiberglass windows are a valuable resale feature among savvy house hunters.

Fiberglass composite options are priced, on average, 30 to 50 percent higher than other choices. But there are ways to keep the costs within your budget. First, avoid shopping with a company that doesn’t typically deal with fiberglass windows—these stores have to import the windows, which adds the price of shipping to the normal rates. Experts have an in, as well, on how to buy. For example, foam-filled fiberglass has the highest insulation value of any window frame material, but hollow-core fiberglass frames insulate well enough in most locations. Foam-filled cores “may be a plus in extremely cold climates, but the type of glass you select is most important for energy savings and comfort,” says blogger and home-renovation/maintenance expert Jim Dulley.

To explore still more ways you can enjoy fiberglass at an affordable price, visit Hall’s Window Center to chat with one of our staff. Not only will you find a wide selection of quality models on our showroom floor, but you’ll also have trained window professionals available to assist you and answer questions. To schedule an appointment with a window expert, contact us at 916-669-1469 or swing by 11297 White Rock Road, Rancho Cordova, CA 95742.
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Benefits of Fiberglass Composite Windows Over Vinyl

Date Posted: Monday, 08 January 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

There has never been a better time to shop for new windows in Sacramento. The window market is currently filled with options that allow homeowners to find the perfect windows for their home. While it’s nice to have a variety of options, homeowners often find themselves overwhelmed with the number of choices. Typically, the choices will narrow down to two window options that are both highly popular: fiberglass composite windows and vinyl windows. While both have their pluses and minuses, at Hall’s Window Center, we believe fiberglass composite windows are a clear choice over vinyl windows. Here’s why:

Aesthetics
While you want your windows to perform, one of the most important things to homeowners is how their windows will look. In this area, fiberglass composite windows take an obvious lead. Fiberglass composite windows are hard to tell apart from wood windows, thanks to the fine details like knots and imperfections added by manufacturers to recreate that naturally warm look and feel. Like wood windows, they also come in a variety of species and “tones” to choose from, making them a perfect match for any style of home. Vinyl windows, on the other hand, have not earned the same reputation for their looks. Up until recently, it was even difficult to find the window material in any color other than basic white.

Energy Efficiency
Both vinyl and fiberglass composite options have earned a strong reputation for their many energy efficient features. However, some of these features could turn into a major problem in the long run. For example, vinyl windows have the ability to expand in order to increase insulation. Unfortunately, this material expands at a rate four times greater than it’s glass, applying added pressure to the frame and causing gaps and drafts to form. While fiberglass composite windows do the same thing, they do so at a rate equal to their glass to avoid any future problems.

Durability and Lifespan
When you purchase a new window, you want it to last as long as possible. The shorter the lifespan of your windows, the more you’ll have to spend on purchasing and installing replacement windows. Fortunately, fiberglass composite windows hold the longest lifespan on the market, lasting up to eight times longer than some of the leading vinyl window brands. That means greater quality and less spending on future window replacement projects.

When it comes to fiberglass composite windows vs. vinyl windows, there’s really no contest. Now the next step is figuring out where to find the highest quality of fiberglass composite windows for your home. At Hall’s Window Center, you’ll find a wide assortment of fiberglass composite window models to choose from, as well as highly trained window experts that will happily answer questions about your window project. Start your fiberglass window composite project today by calling 916-669-1469 or come in to see us and the window options we carry at 11297 White Rock Road, Rancho Cordova, CA 95742.

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6 Energy-Efficient Reasons To Love Fiberglass Windows

Date Posted: Monday, 08 January 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti
According to the American Energy Association (AEA), roughly 60 percent of the energy that is wasted in the average American household is released through the windows and doors. That’s a large percentage of your paycheck literally being sucked out of your hands. And the first reason why you want to explore whether fiberglass composite windows are right for you.

Here are just some of the ways fiberglass composite windows help your home stay cozy and affordable all year long:

Double- and triple-pane glass. One of the most important features of an energy-efficient window is its glass density. If a window features thin, single pane glass, you can bet that your heating or cooling efforts will escape right through it—and vice versa. By choosing a material like fiberglass composite windows that come standard with double or triple pane glass, you keep your heating and cooling efforts inside where they belong. That’s because the extra panes contain trapped air in that half-inch space, which functions as an insulator by restricting the amount of air movement.

Tinting. Tints repel solar heat and help reduce the need for an increase in air conditioning during summer heat waves. They’re even more useful with California’s many in-between days in the low 70s, when it’s too warm without air conditioning and too cold with it. And—you guessed it!—fiberglass windows often come standard with tints.

Expand to seal. Fiberglass isn’t the only window material that uses smart expansion technology to enhance insulation. Vinyl windows also fit the frame tightly by expanding. Unfortunately, vinyl windows grow faster than their glass, and that can lead to damage, which drastically reduces energy efficiency. Fiberglass composite windows, however, expand in the same manner as their glass to enhance insulation efforts while avoiding long-term problems.

Weather-resistant. Harsh weather is rough on windows. For example, wood tends to absorb excess moisture during particularly wet seasons, leading to rotting and distorting that quickly develops into drafts and gaps. Once these drafts form, say goodbye to your efficiency. Fortunately, fiberglass windows are made from a durable, weather-resistant material that won’t absorb excess moisture, and fiberglass is nine times stronger than vinyl on average.

Eco-friendly. As a bonus, because fiberglass is less compromised than wood, it boasts a longer life cycle and cuts down fewer trees.

Glazing. No doubt you’ve heard that adding glazing to your window construction will increase their energy efficiency. But adding this treatment raises your costs. Fiberglass comes with several layers of glazing as part of their original construction.

Ready to start saving hundreds on your annual energy bills? Stop by Hall’s Window Center to start shopping for your new fiberglass composite windows. Only the highest quality of fiberglass composite windows will provide you with enhanced energy efficient features, which is why we bring only the best on the market to our valued customers. To start shopping for your fiberglass replacement windows in Sacramento, CA, call at 916-669-1469 or come and see us at 11297 White Rock Road, Rancho Cordova, CA 95742.
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Are Your Patio Doors Ready For Winter?

Date Posted: Monday, 01 January 2018 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti
It’s a new year, which means Sacramento residents are ready for hot chocolate, cozy fires, and college basketball. But while we may not see snow, energy bill spikes are a given every winter.

The good news is, you can minimize the bill increase that comes with cold weather. In fact, the biggest culprit may be as close as your patio door, but few families identify this as a problem.

Here’s how to make sure this feature isn’t costing you more than it should:

What state are they in? If your patio doors are difficult to open or make any kind of noise while opening and closing, chances are good they aren’t up to the task of insulating your home this winter.

Take the candle test. Pass a lit candle around your doorframes. Be sure to cover every angle and corner. If you find that the candle flickers (or even worse, blows out), it’s typically a good indication that a draft is present.

Of course, it’s impossible to stop all the air leakage around the weather stripping on a sliding glass door and still be able to use the door. Know, too, that weather stripping naturally wears down, so your air leakage will increase as the door ages. With some manufacturers, it is possible that we can help you replace the stripping. We’re also glad to help you explore whether swinging doors will fit your structure, as these often offer a tighter seal.

The Department of Energy suggests hanging insulated drapes and make sure to close them at night as an extra layer against any air leaks.

Check the glass. If you can see condensation on the glass, it’s likely your patio doors have absorbed moisture within the frames. This can cause major damage like rotting or frame distortion, which will quickly lead to drafts and gaps. Unfortunately, this is a never- ending problem that will require repairs year after year.

If you’ve noticed one or more of these signs, add new “patio doors” to your new year’s resolutions. At Hall’s Window Center, we’ll help you find quality patio doors in Sacramento that will properly insulate your home through any season while saving you hundreds of dollars on your annual energy expenses. Call 916-669-1469 or head to our showroom at 11297 White Rock Road, Rancho Cordova, CA 95742.
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Why Fiberglass Composite Windows are the Energy Efficient Choice for Your Home

Date Posted: Monday, 25 December 2017 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

When shopping for new windows for your Sacramento home, you likely have a number of features that you’re looking to check off your list. You want your windows to be stylish, long lasting, and of course, energy efficient. More and more homeowners are making energy efficient windows a top priority for their window project and with rising energy costs, it’s easy to see why. In fact, according to the American Energy Association (AEA) roughly 60% of the energy that is wasted in the average American household is released through the windows and doors. That’s a large percentage of your bill when you stop and think about it. The primary factor in whether or not your windows are saving you money or costing you more is the material you choose. That’s why at Hall’s Window Center, we strongly recommend fiberglass composite windows to all of our clients. Here are just some of the ways that fiberglass composite windows help your home stay cozy and affordable all year long:

Fiberglass Composite Windows Come with Double and Triple Pane Glass
Often overlooked, one of the most important features of an energy efficient window is its glass density. If a window features thin, single pane glass, you can bet that your heating or cooling efforts will escape right through it. This also means that outside hot and cold air makes its way into your home much more easily. By choosing a material like fiberglass composite windows that come standard with double or triple pane glass, you can keep your heating and cooling efforts inside where they belong.

Fiberglass Composite Windows Expand (but Not Too Much)
Fiberglass composite windows aren’t the only window material that utilizes smart expansion technology to enhance insulation. Vinyl windows also fit the frame tightly by expanding. Unfortunately, vinyl windows grow faster than their glass and that can lead to damage, which drastically reduces energy efficiency. Fiberglass composite windows, however, expand in the same manner as their glass to enhance insulation efforts while avoiding long-term problems.

Fiberglass Composite Windows are Weather Resistant

Harsh weather can be the downfall of a window if you don’t choose the right kind. For example, wood windows tend to absorb excess moisture during particularly wet seasons, leading to rotting and distorting that quickly develops into drafts and gaps. Once these drafts form, you can say goodbye to your efficiency. Fortunately, fiberglass windows are made from a durable, weather resistant material that won’t absorb any excess moisture.

Ready to start saving hundreds on your annual energy bills? Stop by Hall’s Window Center to start shopping for your new fiberglass composite windows in Sacramento, CA. Only the highest quality of fiberglass composite windows will provide you with enhanced energy efficient features, which is why we bring only the best on the market to our valued customers. To start shopping for your fiberglass windows, call at 916-669-1469 or come and see us at 11297 White Rock Road, Rancho Cordova, CA 95742.

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How Fiberglass Composite Windows Can Help You Save Money

Date Posted: Monday, 18 December 2017 08:00
Posted By: Mario Grandinetti

You’ve likely heard of fiberglass composite windows when you start looking for new windows for your Sacramento home. This window material has quickly become one of the most popular window replacement options in Sacramento, and they hold the capability to enhance the overall comfort and aesthetic appeal of your home. Unfortunately, there is a common misconception that fiberglass composite options are overpriced. While this isn’t typically the case, these windows can be expensive when shopping with a window company that doesn’t typically deal with fiberglass windows, thus requiring them to import the windows, adding the price of shipping onto the normal rates. When shopping for fiberglass composite windows with a company like Hall’s Window Center, not only can the windows be reasonably priced, but they can also help you save money in a number of areas. Read on to learn more about how fiberglass composite windows can help you save money.

Fiberglass Composite Windows Help You Save on Bills
One of the best things about fiberglass composite windows is the energy efficient features they hold. Thanks to fiberglass windows double and triple pane glass, weather resistant frames, and expanding material, homeowners can literally save quite a bit on their annual heating and cooling costs. Who doesn’t enjoy opening a much lower bill?

Fiberglass Composite Windows Help You Save on Upkeep and Maintenance
Not only does maintenance like continuous painting take time, but it also causes a number of smaller expenses to quickly add up. To maintain the look and quality of your windows, you often have to pay for expense materials or services to get the job done. With fiberglass composite windows, however, you only need to worry about the cost of simple soap and water, which is all it takes to keep these windows looking like new.

Fiberglass windows Raise Your Resale Value

Not only can fiberglass composite windows help you save money, but they can also help put some cash back into your bank account. That’s because recent real estate reports have shown us that homes with specific window materials, like fiberglass, tend to sell at a higher price than those without them, thanks to savvy house hunters that know their value. We suggest speaking with a local real estate agent to learn more about how fiberglass composite windows can enhance your investment when it’s time to sell your home.

Read to start saving time and money while enjoying stunning windows? Then visit Hall’s Window Center to start shopping for your new fiberglass composite windows. Not only will you find a wide selection of quality models on our showroom floor, but you’ll also have trained window professionals available to assist you and answer questions. To schedule an appointment with a window expert, contact us at 916-669-1469 or swing by 11297 White Rock Road, Rancho Cordova, CA 95742.

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