STC 44 Replacement Windows - Options?

book41July 15, 2014

Hi, new to the forum. I recently bought a place in Chicago -- great location, but grossly underestimated the noise level from the nearby freeway.

I'm looking at replacement windows and have read quite a bit on here -- most threads seem a couple years old, so I am reposting on this topic.

Does anyone have any recommendations for a STC 40 (ideally 44), operable window? Cost is a slight issue, but I am only looking for 2 bedroom windows on the streetside -- peace of mind may justify a higher price.

Specifically, it looks like Atrium Silent Guard would work. Older threads have bashed Atrium. Has anyone had any positive recent experience with this company?

What about Kolbe? Their double-hung (not my preferred -- would rather casement) has a high STC and might work.

I'm also looking at Loewen, but without having a quote, they seem quite expensive?

Lastly, I have considered Jen Weld, but recent posts here give me pause.

Any other options? I'd be particularly interested if there was anyone could offer options in Chicago/SE Wisconsin.

Anyway, long post. All insight is greatly appreciated!


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You are throwing out cost as a slight issue and nothing about STC aligns itself with that and even more is the case when you are talking about Kolbe and Loewen.

Depending on what sort of noise cancellation you are looking for, a standard replacement window will get you into the mid-30s (usually good enough for most folks) with laminated glass.

Anything in the 40's will require a dedicated STC window and will normally include and exterior storm sash, offset glazing, and/or laminated glass.

What are you current windows?

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 12:38PM
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Plus just windows will really not make that much of a difference as sound comes travels everything.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 3:42PM
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Thanks for the replies. A little more context.

The current windows are weather shield, dual pane casements. The sound is entering the house primarily through the windows. The third floor, master bedroom is the second loudest room in the house next to the first-floor. The noise level on the third floor is greater than the second even though the second is a wall of glass in the form of a sliding door.

In terms of cost, while my aim is to be cost-effective, I'm willing to pay a premium if it addresses the issue. My greatest concern is buying expensive windows that may provide only marginal improvement. I have read a lot on here and other forums. It sounds like installation is key; triple windows may be equal to double in terms of effectiveness; and, laminate may help some, but spacing between lites is the greater determinative factor. With this said, there does not seem to be a lot of info on which companies make good windows. Maybe they are all the same and it is just a matter of finding a company that can best meet the above. Alternately, some companies have posted STC ratings that are higher than others. I am wondering if their numbers can be trusted??

(Sorry for the somewhat run-on. Pecking on my phone :)


This post was edited by book41 on Mon, Jul 21, 14 at 13:06

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 12:51PM
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Can Weathershield offer you a laminated replacement sash?

If you could try one of those out, that would be your best option to vet the improvement potential.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 4:46PM
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