How to Measure Home Windows for Replacement
Why Measuring Your Windows for Replacement Matters
Measuring your windows for replacement is the first and foremost important part of window repair and replacement. Aside from the quality of the windows purchased, the overall performance, comfort, and energy savings provided by your new windows will come back to these measurements in one way or another:
- When the window is too large: If the windows are too large for the opening they will be prevented from expanding with hotter weather and the seals of the glass can break – ruining the energy efficiency and allows condensation to get inside the windows and fog it up. Furthermore, expansion can even crack and shatter the glass if the window is stuffed in an opening too tightly.
- When the window is too small: If the windows are measured to be too small and do not fit properly, they may leave gaps which will create drafts. Drafts will literally send your energy savings out the window. In colder months, this can make your home uncomfortable as well. Along with the air that blows in, weather, such as rain, can get inside the window frame which can quickly destroy your new windows.
How Do You Measure Replacement Windows?
Now that you are aware of why it is crucial to measure your windows properly, let us get into the proper way to measure them. The three measurements taken for a typical window include a vertical and horizontal measurement and a depth measurement. Get your tape measure ready!
- Vertical Measurement (Height): Take a minimum of three measurements from the bottom to the top of the window frame. Take one measurement down the middle from top to bottom and one vertical measurement on the left and the right sides as well. The smallest of the three is the vertical measurement you will use.
- Horizontal Measurement (Width): Measure across the frame of the window from left to right. Take three of these horizontal measurements. One at the top, middle, and bottom of the window. The smallest measurement of the three will be used.
- Depth Measurement: Take several measurements of depth around the window from inside of the frame to the outside of the frame. Use the smallest measurement here as well.
Where to Buy New Windows in Washington DC
There is a sweet spot of one inch around the new energy efficient windows going into the rough opening. This is the perfect amount of space for perfect fitting and adjustments. Thus when the energy efficient replacement windows are purchased the height and width should be taken 2 inches shorter than these dimensions to allow this 1 inch space around the window.
If you have a local contractor or window installer doing the work they will be taking all the measurements, but now you know how as well if you wanted to double check.
Some window companies, such as Pella, have certification programs for contractors on window installation. Having a contractor who is certified to install windows could be an important factor to consider when buying your windows and choosing a contractor. This certification, or lack thereof, will often determine the kind of warranty that will come with your new windows. Saving a few hundred dollars only to have the your window installation be of low quality is not worth it.
514 Kenyon Street NW,
Washington, DC 20010