Windows FAQ

Are you replacing your windows or building a new home and trying to decide which types of windows to get? Want to learn more about home windows? Get answers to common window questions you’ve been curious about right here!

What are windows made of?

Windows can be made of different materials: wood, vinyl, aluminum or fiberglass. Decorative features like muntins/grilles are also available in different materials. Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages.

What kinds of windows are there?

You can choose to install a variety of styles of windows. Each one is different, and the type you choose will depend on the location of the window, your home’s architecture, your budget, and the look you want to achieve with your new windows. Shanco currently installs the following styles of windows:

  • Double hung
  • Tilt
  • Slider
  • Casement
  • Picture
  • Bay
  • Bow
  • Geometric

Does Shanco sell replacement windows?

Yes. Shanco Windows sells all types of windows, whether you need a replacement or are adding an addition on your home.

What are energy-efficient windows?

Energy-efficient windows help prevent heat from leaving your home in the winter and leaking in during the summer, saving you money on your energy bills. When buying windows, it’s recommended to get only energy-efficient windows with the NFRC (National Fenestration Rating Council) label. Most ENERGY STAR® windows have the NFRC label as well. In fact, many states now require window products to carry the NFRC label.

What is the most energy-efficient window material?

The most energy-efficient window materials are wood and vinyl. When it comes to styles, the most energy-efficient windows are picture/fixed pane (which don’t open at all), casement, and awning.

Do I need new windows?

There are a few signs that should tell you when to replace your windows. It’s most likely time for window replacement if:

  • Your windows are old and drafty
  • You want to boost the market value and curb appeal of your home
  • Your energy bills have been significantly increasing
  • Your windows are cracked

What are the benefits of updating my windows?

Updating your windows has many benefits. While it may seem expensive at first glance, it will save you money in the long-run if you install energy-efficient windows and will add extra comfort to your home by eliminating areas with uneven temperatures.

Should I get window repair or replacement?

Generally, it’s best to consult professional window contractors to determine if you should get window repair or replacement. However, it’s likely you need a full window replacement rather than just a repair if your repairs have been getting more frequent and expensive.

What is low-e glass?

Low-E stands for low emissivity, which refers to the quality of a surface that emits or radiates low levels of radiant thermal energy (heat). Low-E glass reflects energy from the sun, which makes your home more energy-efficient and comfortable.

What is a divided-light window?

Divided-light windows have multiple panes of glass separated by muntins (which are also called grilles). The typical pattern is nine lights, three wide and three high. Divided-light windows have a historic Colonial style look but meet today’s energy efficiency standards.

What is the difference between true divided-light and simulated divided-light?

True divided-light windows have multiple panes of glass. Simulated divided-light windows, although they look like true divided-light windows, have only one pane of glass and removable muntins that are attached to the glass with a strong adhesive.

What are common window problems?

  • Inability to open
  • Inability to stay open
  • Excess condensation
  • Sash deterioration

Is there anything I should do to prepare my home for window replacement?

Before window replacement, it’s a good idea to remove wall decorations near the windows, as well certain pieces from the windows, including:

  • Curtains
  • Blinds
  • Window treatments
  • Security sensors

What is the difference between new windows and replacement windows?

New windows are used for new construction projects and include framing as well as interior and exterior sill work. Replacement windows are installed in an existing opening and replace just the window, not the frame and sill.

What is the difference between a double-pane and single-pane window?

A double-pane window is a window that has two panes of glass separated by a thin space that is typically filled with a noble gas such as argon or krypton. This gas helps with energy efficiency. Many double-pane windows also have Low-E glass, which is extremely energy-efficient.

How much do new windows cost?

Your overall window installation cost will depend on a few things—window type, size, etc. According to HomeAdvisor (based on more than 300 cost profiles), in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, the average reported cost of installing windows is $5,445.

What is the best way to clean windows?

You should clean your windows at least twice a year. When you do, keep some things in mind:

  • Avoid citrus-based cleaners and paint removers
  • Start with the top windows and move down so you don’t drip solution on the clean windows below
  • Wipe the windows dry with a lint-free cloth
  • Dry the frames and sills with a separate cloth

Learn more»

Why do my windows have condensation?

Excess condensation on windows can be caused by:

  • Poor insulation
  • Broken parts that ruin the tight seal and allow air to leak in
  • Improper installation


see what our happy customers are saying

"Shanco Companies came up with the perfect solution for improving water drainage from the roof. The crews were professional and did a great job. I would highly recommend Shanco Companies."

-Silver Spring, MD


We accept major credit cards including

visa_card master_card american_express