Replacing Steel Casement windows

smoochasSeptember 4, 2010

We are sad that the beautiful steel casement windows we have are so INefficient. We love the way they look! Truly!

We've only started shopping and have found Okna (Vinyl) and Trimline (alum covered wood) - Are these good products?

No doubt Trimline is much closer to the profiles of our original window than the vinyl. Is it safe to assume that we will encounter the profile issue with every vinyl window? Regarding the Trimline, I was also worried a bit about water getting behind the aluminum and rotting the wood. Any comments on these windows?

Like I said, we are at the start of our search and would appreciate any suggestions of companies/products that would compliment what is original to the house. thanks!

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Vinyl Profiles will differ from mfg. to mfg., but will look nothing like your existing units. The advantage to Vinyl is Price and they are energy efficient (with the correct glass for your region). Look at Fiberglass windows for Strength, Color choices, Options, Energy Efficiency and should Not Rot or Corrode ! They will cost more going in, but, in the long run will be worth it.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2010 at 11:28AM
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Windows on Washington Ltd

Okna is a very solid vinyl product with very slim lines (only 1/8th thicker than Marvin Fiberglass) in the Insul-Tec series.

Why do you think Trimline will look more like your existing?

    Bookmark   September 4, 2010 at 4:17PM
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@highport, are there any fiberglass manufs. you would recommend?

@windowsonwashington, imo, the trimline is closer to the original casement because it is less ornate, (steel casements are very utilitarian looking and so the trimlines are closer in that sense) and also the frame seems narrower. I believe, at least an 1/2-inch per side-sash so a total of 1-inch per window more of glass? One of the things I am not so fond of on the OKNA is the ornate trim-molding-look their have to their frames. But I'm glad to hear its a solid product. One of the challenges is the original window detail. On the inside, there is not wood trim or molding but rather just a finished plaster surround on all sides. And obviously on the outside, there is just a caulk joint. They have assured us that they will use the tiniest trim mold for the inside and outside.

Is it okay to ask a window installer for locations for where they have installed similar windows and for reference we can call? To date, they've only referred us to online reviewing website (insiderpages?) and had us look at a hardcopy booklet of customer survey/reviews. They were rather short coming when we wanted to see the exact product installed.

We are considering the OKNA in the dark bronze color (have you had any issues with this color?) We've read that painted pvc might have some issues in heat and it does get pretty hot here in the summers. Our house faces east in the front and west in the back. We also wanted to see the window in the bronze color installed but again, the installer has not provided any info which I find a bit odd?

We are considering the RSL (raised simulate lite?) - you know the divider details. I am not sold as it seems these are just glued onto the glass with double-stick tape. How do you think these hold up in duration of the product?

OH, and we live directly across from a playground where the noise can be atrocious in the summer. I asked if there was a sound difference to a double-hung vs. a casement window and the installer said no difference. The biggest would be to get a hurricane type of insulated glass unit, where the outside is actually 2 layers of glass laminated together. Any comments on this?

    Bookmark   September 5, 2010 at 7:35AM
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Windows on Washington Ltd

Use the 400 series if you don't like the exterior on the 500/800 series. It is much less ornate.

It is fine to ask for work samples. Whenever you deviate from a white window, the sample size of work shrinks considerably.

I have observed not issues with the painted exteriors.

All the SDLs that I have seen have good track records of holding up. That bonding tape is some heavy duty stuff.

You installer is correct and wrong at the same time. He is correct that is the glass is the same you will have equivalent STC (Sound Transmission) ratings out of both. He is incorrect in that the casement will be more air tight and therefore transmit less sound due to air leakage.

Laminated glass will raise (i.e. block more sound) the STC rating when compared to standard double pane glass unit. Usually the laminated option is more than enough to handle most customer concerns about noise.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2010 at 2:43PM
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Take a close look at Marvin & Weather Shield Fiberglass. There may be others in your region, such as Milgard, Serious, Fibertec, Thermotech. For Sound control you can use Triple Glazed, but i prefer Laminated, because it has less weight, less ultraviolet light & is less prone to object penetration. You do not need Impact Laminated (thicker film) unless you are in costal region. Simulated Divided Lite bars use an Epoxy tape and have a good track record for adhesion to glass. I am not a fan of painting vinyl windows (especially dark colors) but the coating some mfgs. use seems to be holding up pretty well here in the South. I would study the warranty on this very closely! The Dealer you choose is critical to the Price & SERVICE you will receive!!!

    Bookmark   September 6, 2010 at 10:17AM
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Windows on Washington Ltd


Triple glazed has zero impact on sound control when compared to standard double pane.

Laminated glass packages will weigh as much as a triple pane glass package.

If you going to look at fiberglass, Marvin and Inline are the only two that I would look at.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2010 at 11:26AM
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