Category Archives: Freelite Blog

Leading Causes of Drafty Windows in Scottsdale, AZ

In Scottsdale, AZ you probably spend a lot of money keeping your home at a comfortable temperature. Even with cooler temperatures you still want to make sure your home is sealed and well insulated. You don’t want to be throwing money out the window, and that is the most common place for air leaks. What causes drafty windows? Here are a few factors:

  1. Improper Installation

When it comes to performance and efficiency, windows are only as good as the installation. It may seem simple, but window installation takes precision, skill, proper tools, and know-how. It isn’t a home improvement project you want to tackle on your own. The smallest error in measurements and your windows will be a problem for years to come. So make sure your windows were installed by reliable professionals with the proper knowledge, tools, and experience.

  1. Age

Next, how old is your window? While it is true that window technologies have evolved over the years, even today no window is built to last forever. Parts and components break down, seals slowly fail, and eventually you will need replacement windows. If you suspect your window is more than 20 or 30 years old then you will want to look closely at the seals and framing. Most windows will start to show their age. You may notice cracks, warping, or other damage. These can create small gaps around the frame, and air leaks both in and out of your home.

  1. Wear

How often do you open and close your windows? In Scottsdale, AZ you probably put your windows to more use. This normal wear and tear will add up over the years. Windows may be more difficult to open and close. The latches that help seal your window tightly against the frame might be stiff or broken. You may also notice that the weather stripping looks compacted or worn away. Any one of these can cause drafty windows in your home.

  1. Poor Maintenance

Most windows require some level of upkeep. Wood windows demand the most because you need to sand and repaint them every few years to keep the frames and finish looking like new. Aluminum can scratch or chip over the years, and you have to watch out for corrosion. Vinyl is perhaps the easiest material to maintain, and only requires washing with mild detergent and silicone lubrication. But if you neglect your windows, they will break down.

  1. Extreme Temperatures

Nothing wears windows as fast as extreme heat. It can cause frame material to warp, dry out, fade, and become brittle. Sometimes it can go from cool to extremely hot. These types of temperature changes can cause the material to expand and contract, resulting in seal failure and air leaks. High-quality frame materials like fiberglass and vinyl will hold up better and last longer.

If you are tired of drafts and want replacement windows in Scottsdale, AZ leave it to the experts at Freelite. We offer a no-pressure, no-hassle way to buy new windows. We provide premium products and the highest standards for installation. Your satisfaction is guaranteed. Call us at (602) 233-1981 or visit 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

Do Aluminum Windows Work for Hot Climates?

You probably didn’t wake up thinking it was time to get new windows. Something has probably gone wrong or is beginning like leaks, drafts, wear, warping, or damage. Deep down you knew these windows wouldn’t last forever, but because it was such a big investment you have put off getting replacements for a while. But now you just can’t afford to put it off any longer.

New windows are better than ever with the advancements in technology, design, and materials. You can get energy efficient, maintenance free windows in almost any price range. The trouble is deciding which windows and materials are right for your home. Many homeowners in Scottsdale, AZ write off aluminum without giving it much thought. But there are a few reasons why you might want to give these windows a second look.

Advantages of Aluminum Windows

In warmer climates aluminum windows still remain a popular choice. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. Strength

One of the greatest benefits of aluminum is the strength. It is three times as strong as vinyl. It can hold larger panes of glass on less material without mullions, and this can really open up your space if you like big windows. And once fitted into the opening, aluminum windows are less likely to loosen.

  1. Versatility

Manufacturers can easily manipulate the material. As such, you can get aluminum windows in almost any window style and shape. You can get the windows that match your unique tastes and style. And the clean lines give you a modern, minimal aesthetic many homeowners are drawn to. You also have a kaleidoscope of colors to choose from and can paint the finish should you so desire.

  1. Lightweight

While strong, aluminum is also light. They are fairly easy to form and install and will not compromise the supporting structure of your house because they are excessively heavy. This is why these windows work for both residential and commercial construction.

  1. Low Maintenance

These windows are not maintenance free, but they don’t require as much work as wood windows do. You can prime and paint these windows any color you choose, and upkeep is pretty straightforward. And if you choose to get a powder-coated finish from the manufacturer, this will slow weathering and decrease the risk of scratches, rust, and corrosion.

  1. Cost Effective

As you can guess, pricing depends on several factors. You not only pay for the frame material, but for glass, laminate coatings, hardware, and other technologies. Aluminum itself is readily available and quite affordable compared to wood and fiberglass windows.

Disadvantages of Aluminum Windows

While there are several benefits, aluminum windows do come with some drawbacks as well. These include:

  1. Thermal Transference

Aluminum is known for being a good conductor, not insulator. But today manufacturers implement thermal breaks, insulation, and polyamide technologies to improve efficiency. These windows can block out the heat as well as almost any other product. Just be sure you check the NFRC labels to help compare efficiency.

  1. Rust

If scratches or pitting get deeper than the finish, your windows could rust. Over time the corrosion could expand and compromise the entire frame.

  1. Difficult Replacement

Most aluminum windows are new-construction products. This means you will be hard pressed to find a retrofit replacement for an existing frame. If you want aluminum replacement windows you will need to replace the entire unit.

So yes, aluminum windows are a great option for hot climates. At Freelite we strive to offer the best products on the market. If you want aluminum windows in Scottsdale, AZ, you should talk with our experts by calling (602) 233-1981 or stopping by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

10 Best Window Decorations for the Holiday Season

The time has come. The holiday is upon us, and if you have been putting off putting up your decorations you can’t afford to wait much longer. If you are looking to bring a little cheer to your home and neighborhood this year, these are the top window decorations to try. These are 10 simple, and safe options to use on your windows in Scottsdale, AZ.

  1. Traditional Wreath

Can’t go wrong with this classic, especially when you move it from the door to the new windows Scottsdale. But don’t use the adhesive hooks directly on the glass. These can do some damage to the laminate coatings. So if you do decide to string a wreath in your window, hang it with fishing line from a hook attached on the wall above your window or opt for suction cup hooks instead.

  1. Candy Canes

If you have a sweet tooth you can put a lot of those pretty holiday treats to good use as decorations. Use a tension rod and tie the candy canes to ribbons to hang down. Then you can also enjoy them when you take the decorations down.

  1. Baubles

Another popular choice is hanging large glass ornaments and baubles on ribbons or fishing line in the windows. This is a great idea if you have young children and want to get the more fragile ornaments off the tree, and out of reach. You can still enjoy the glitz and glimmer, without the worry of little hands getting too close.

  1. Garlands

Pine boughs and fronds work for both inside and outside to swag your windows. They add a beautiful bit of green to tie in your tree. And if you choose to use fresh greenery it will make your home smell great.

  1. Paper Snowflakes

Give off the impression of living in a snow globe by hanging paper snowflakes in all the windows. This is a great way to get the winter feeling while living in the warmer desert. It is also a fun family activity if you want to kick off the holidays with a fun craft.

  1. Giftwrap

Not sure you want to take too much time decorating your windows? A simple, but fun trick is to just use gift wrap on your front windows. You can make it more detailed with ribbons and bows too.

  1. Cityscape

Another new trend is to use butcher paper and cut out a city scene with housetops or skyscrapers to line along the bottom of your window frame. It is a simple accent, but when the lights of your home shine through to the outside it creates a unique and stunning silhouette passersby won’t be able to help noticing.

  1. Window Painting

This is another great idea if you are looking for a simple, but unique way to decorate your windows this winter. You can draw anything from simple dots for snow to more elaborate options.

  1. Stars

As far as holiday traditions go, stars are a big part of many decorations. You can find affordable paper stars at most craft and party stores, and hang them in your windows for affordable holiday style.

  1. Christmas Lights

Can’t go wrong with this classic decoration. There are so many options to choose from now. Warm, cool, and multi-colored string lights. Maybe you prefer icicle lights, snowflake lights, or swirling projection lights. The only suggestion we have is you choose energy efficient LED lights, and make sure you don’t staple directly to the window frame.

If your windows are old and drafty, give yourself the gift of replacement windows this season. The investment is one that will keep on giving for many years to come. Call Freelite for replacement windows in Scottsdale, AZ. You can reach us at (602) 233-1981 or visit 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

What are the Pros and Cons of Sliding Glass Patio Doors?

In the past few years sliding glass doors have become a popular trend in modern home décor. Installing sliding patio doors in place of a regular door is a tough decision. But if you are looking at upgrading your patio door, here are a few things you should know about sliding glass doors:

Pros of Sliding Patio Doors

Here are some of the many advantages you can benefit from with sliding glass patio doors Phoenix:

  1. Bright and Open

These wide open glass doors not only give you a great view, but let in immense amounts of light. This gives an illusion of more space without adding any square footage to your home.

  1. Simple Operation

High quality sliding patio doors should operate smoothly and quietly. You simply slide the operable pane over the fixed pane. And regular maintenance should keep those patio doors in great working order for years to come.

  1. Operate with Less Space

One thing most homeowners love about sliding doors is they do not require any additional space. Inswing or outswing doors require extra room to operate. In some cases outdoor furniture can obstruct the entryway for these types of doors. But with sliding doors you don’t have to worry about that.

  1. Clean Style

The façade of sliding patio doors is very neat and streamlined. The linear look is very modern and does not disrupt the flow of frames and boxes. So if you are looking for a more contemporary style, consider installing sliding glass patio doors.

  1. Energy Efficiency

While not the most energy efficient patio door on the market, when latched these doors can create a good seal against the elements. To make sure you are choosing the most energy efficient options, make sure you read the NFRC labels and choose doors with double pane glass and argon gas fills. You can also choose low-e glass to protect your home against the Mesa, AZ heat.

Cons of Sliding Patio Doors

While there are many benefits of sliding glass doors, there are some disadvantages as well. Some of the cons are:

  1. Only Half Open

While these doors do not require as much space for swing, they only open half way. So if you do need a larger opening you will want to try French or Accordion-style patio doors.

  1. Extreme Storms

These doors do not hold up well in areas that experience extreme weather conditions. Frosts, high winds, and severe storms can cause these doors to leak. Luckily Mesa, AZ is moderate and all you really need to worry about is the heat.

  1. Maintenance

These doors are not super easy to maintain. In fact, the process can be time consuming, especially if you need to replace any parts. If you ever have any issues with your sliding patio door you should contact a professional for help.

  1. Security

While these doors do have locks and latches, they are not as strong as the latches and bolts on standard doors. You can place a rod or board in the track if you worry about break-ins to help improve the security.

Choosing Freelite for Sliding Glass Doors

If you are considering new patio doors in Mesa, AZ then give sliding glass doors a closer look. There is a reason why they are still so popular in modern homes. Call Freelite at (602) 233-1981 for more information. Or to check out some of our products stop by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

Understanding All of Your Glass Options

When it comes to replacement windows you have a lot of decisions to make. Many clients focus on the big decisions like style and material. Unfortunately after spending all that time narrowing down the options, few people realize how important the glass can be. The reality is window glazing is the most important aspect of any window when it comes to thermal resistance and light transmittance. You need all the information so you can make the most informed decision. So here is what you need to understand about the glass in your window units.

Single vs Double Glazing
Single glazing means just one pane of glass, double glazing means two, and triple glazing means three. The standard used to be just one pane of glass, but single glazing does almost nothing to protect and insulate your home. With multiple glazing the panes are hermetically sealed with air space between. Not only does this make windows more energy efficient, but also stronger, quieter, and more secure.

Inert Gas Fills
Many potential buyers mistakenly presume the space between the glass panes is filled with regular air. The truth is these windows have more to them. Instead of air that houses moisture and expands and contracts with hot and cold temperatures, these windows are filled with inert gas. It is odorless, colorless, and also denser than air. That is why the windows will not fog up and the thermal performance is better. The two gases commonly used are argon and krypton.

Low-E Coatings
This term is short or low-emissivity. These windows feature a specialized, ultra-thin metallic coating. It blocks unwanted heat and ultra-violet light. These windows are ideal for the Mesa, AZ heat because they keep unwanted solar radiation out while still allowing natural light in. These coatings will make your home more energy efficient and enjoyable in both the summer and winter months.

Self-Cleaning Coatings
Manufacturers are finding new technologies around every corner. Today many offer a low-maintenance coating. It is also called self-cleaning glass. This can be a bit misleading, but the fact is these options help keep your home windows Phoenix cleaner, longer. They also make windows easier to clean.

Privacy Glass
Another option to consider is etched privacy glass. There are several levels of opacity. You can choose something that just blurs the edges or complete privacy. You can choose patterns and textures, as well as colored tints. We offer Milgard, Marvin, and Pella windows and each has their own unique styles of privacy glass to choose from.08

At Freelite we know what customers like and don’t like about the window buying process. If you want to find the best products for the best price, and a no-hassle way to buy, then contact us at (602) 233-1981. Our experts will give you a complete breakdown on all of our products. We work to fulfill the highest standards of excellence and guarantee customer satisfaction. Want to check out some of our products? Visit 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

Should I Replace All my Windows at Once?

You can’t remodel half of a kitchen or finish half of an addition. But you can replace only half of your windows. In fact, it often happens that people want to replace only the windows with specific issues. They can pay for those and leave the rest for later. These are called partial projects. But is this the best strategy? Will it save you money? Here is all you need to know about replacing your windows and how many you want to replace at one time.

Do I Even Need Replacement Windows?
Sometimes it is obvious. Broken glass, warped frames, rotted wood—these are all very clear signs that you need to get replacement windows as soon as possible. But sometimes the signs are more subtle. You might notice a draft in a room, see condensation forming between the window panes, or have difficulty working a latch. These too are signs that your windows are on the way out. The first thing to consider is their age. Anything more than 20 years old probably needs replacement. But do you need to replace them all at once? Not exactly.

When Should I Only Replace Some Windows?
Replacing all the windows will be a huge investment. It is ok to replace your windows over several years. If you contract to replace five to eight windows, most companies will offer you a deal on labor costs if you can employ their installers for a full day. So if you can’t afford to do the whole job, you can absolutely replace just a few windows. The next question to ask is, which windows should you replace first?

How Do I Prioritize my Replacement Windows?
This is a good outline: safety, efficiency, cost, and design. Your first priority should always be safety and functionality. A windows that does not operate properly or has broken glass is a safety risk for you and your family. Next you will want to focus on windows with any defective glass, signs of rot, or structural damage. These windows will eventually fail sooner, rather than later. After that you can focus on energy savings, cost, and esthetics.

Is there a Time to Replace all Windows?
Many window professionals agree that if they can afford it, the customer is better severed by replacing all windows in one order. Why? Because window prices will always go up. There will also be less paperwork, time, and stress by doing it all at once. Also, the installation team will only need to visit your home for one install instead of coming out two or three times over several months.

What is the Best Option?
Ultimately the decision is yours. If you are thinking about doing a partial project in an effort to save money you need to work with a reliable window contractors Phoenix that offers reasonable prices—like Freelite.

People come in thinking they can only afford a handful of windows, but some go away being able to afford replacement windows for the whole house. Others choose to do just a few windows at once because of budget or other constraints. That is just fine. We offer a no-pressure way to buy replacement windows. To set up a consultation appointment call (602) 233-1981 or visit Freelite at 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

New Construction vs. Replacement Windows in Mesa, AZ

If you are looking at replacing your windows you want to make an informed decision, especially because this is such an expensive home renovation project. But as you search the options and look for the best way to replace windows it is easy to feel lost with so many choices. Add to that all the unfamiliar terminology and making any decisions will seem impossible. To help simplify the process here is what you need to know about new construction windows and replacement windows.

Replacement Windows
In the window industry, insert replacement windows or retrofit windows are also called replacement windows. Basically these windows are installed into a preexisting opening. Typically with these windows the installation team does not have to remove any exterior materials from the home. Technicians measure the existing window and custom order the products so that replacement windows will fit the opening perfectly. As a result, they can install new windows without damaging the siding, wall, or window trim. These installations are best if you have time or budget constraints. That said, replacement windows may not fix existing problems. For example, if there is a leak between the existing jamb and rough opening, an insert replacement will not correct the issue. The same goes if there is rotted wood around the frame.

New Construction Windows
Also called full-frame windows, these usually go in a brand new home, or in a renovation or addition to the home. For new construction windows, the studs of the home are exposed. That is why these products include what is called a nail fin frame so installers nail new construction windows directly to the studs. You want a new construction window if there has been damage to the studs or frame of an existing window, you are also replacing siding or stucco, or you are completely renovating or replacing a wall. Because they are a more inclusive project, new construction windows will take more time and renovation.

Which One is Better?
As with most things, there isn’t going to be one set answer. It will change from every customer and every installation. New construction windows are generally made for builders, and as a result are usually cheaper and not the same quality as windows replacement Mesa, AZ. Builders want a lot of windows fast and they don’t want to spend more than necessary. Manufacturers keep that in mind when making new construction windows. But when you are just buying replacement windows you are focused on that one thing, and manufacturers will prioritize the quality. With replacement windows you usually get better quality, more technologies, and more color and style options.

The best way to replace any window in Mesa, AZ is to get input from a professional. Local experts will look at your existing windows and give you advice on what the best option is for your home and budget. To contact our professionals stop by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 or call Freelite at (602) 233-1981. With over 30 years of experience we have seen and installed a lot of windows, new construction and replacement windows. You are sure to get the highest quality products and the installation done right.

When it Comes to Windows, Do Brand Names Matter?

Most homeowners want to know how to get a top quality window. There are hundreds of manufacturers and the industry is fragmented, making the process difficult. Should you look for a big brand name? Or are smaller, regional brands just as good?

It is better to rely on the companies who have been manufacturing windows for a long time. Pella and Marvin windows are going to give you reliable products at a fair price. They are the only manufactures that match our strict criteria for looks, performance, energy efficiency, and service. These companies also stand behind their products and provide the warranty and prices our clients are looking for. Here is a little more information about each brand:

These windows are known for being both well-built and aesthetically pleasing. Pella offers the best quality, and best looking wood windows on the market in their Architect series. They have stellar vinyl and fiberglass windows too. Pella is also one of the most innovative manufactures on the market. They are always coming out with new lines and new products. Their between-the-glass shades in their Designer series are unmatched by any other brand. They also offer a budget friendly, streamlined design with their 450 series. You can expect improved appearance, better function, and high energy savings when you go with this brand. Popular styles include single hung, double hung, casement, awning, and sliding windows along with bay, bow, and special shape windows.

Milgard produces all of their products from start to finish. Each window distributed by Milgard is formulated, tempered, and constructed in the Milgard factory. That is how they can guarantee the quality of each product. They are most well-known for their high-quality vinyl. In fact, Builder Magazine has voted Milgard vinyl windows as “Best Quality Vinyl Windows in the Nation” on eight separate occasions. That is quite a tough spot to earn considering Tempe, AZ vinyl windows are some of the best-selling windows in the United States. They also offer other materials. Their Essence series features a beautiful wood interior and a fiberglass protected exterior. And the Aluminum series has thermally improved material to increase the energy efficiency. You can get single hung, double hung, casement, awning, horizontal slider, jalousie, bay and bow widows as well as picture, arch or radius, and skylights.

What Window Brand Do I Choose?
It all depends on what you are looking for. Local, non-braded companies might be able to cut you a great deal and offer excellent service. But name brand windows come with so much more. You can expect Pella and Milgard windows to last 10, 15, 25 years or more depending on the material and style you choose. But what makes these companies and their products so great are the warranties that back them up. Milgard offers a full lifetime warranty on their products, and if you do have a problem, local techs will take care of your issues. Pella also offers some of the best warranties, which differ depending on the product.

To learn more contact Freelite today at (602) 233-1981 or come by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 to check out some of these products for yourself.

How to Find the Best Deal on Replacement Windows

We all like a good deal, but few people know how to look for great windows at an even better price. Instead, they rely on the first window dealer they approach with the project. That simply won’t do. If you want to save money on replacement windows, here is what you need to know.

1. Look for Contractor or Builder Grade
Builders typically look for lowest cost commodities. So if saving money is your primary concern, then you should follow suit. Replacement windows labeled as “architectural grade” will likely be the most expensive options. These are customized options designed with artistry and functionality in mind. Anything designated as “contractor grade” or “builder grade” will not cost as much. Granted, it also means you get a fairly basic product. At Freelite, we routinely work with contractors and commercial builders. As such, our products meet industry standards, but at more affordable prices.

2. Avoid Extra Features
We all like having extra features. We do it with our cars, phones, computers—you name it. And when it comes to windows, there are several add-ons you can choose from. You can get things like between-glass shades, integrated grilles, custom hardware, and laminate finishes. But you can bet these added options will drive up the price. So consider which features you really need and which ones are not necessary.

3. Cheaper Materials Make for Better Deals
Wood windows are the most expensive on the market. Sure, they are beautiful and energy efficient, but they also require the most work and will be expensive to maintain. Next up is fiberglass. These will hold up for years and need little to no maintenance, but many clients can’t justify the initial cost. The cheapest window options available are usually vinyl. Now, cheaper materials don’t mean cheaply made windows. This construction grade material is still durable, long lasting, and highly energy efficient. If you do want to save money, then you have to decide if you really need wood windows, or if vinyl will suffice.

4. Avoid Custom Made Windows
We do offer some customized window shapes like curves, hexagons, and circles, but these windows can get expensive. They are beautiful and add an aesthetic piece of interest in almost any room. But custom windows are expensive. Bay and bow windows also drive up the price. To get the best deal on replacement windows, you want to stick with the standard styles like single-hung, double-hung, sliders, and casements.

5. Avoid Dealers Who Offer Just One Brand
Competition helps you find better prices. Dealers who offer one brand narrow your options and the limited competition means you end up paying more. At Freelite, we offer several lines from Milgard and Pella. They meet our strict criteria for looks, performance, and energy efficiency. They also provide windows in almost every price range. You are sure to find an excellent product to match your budget.

That said, price should never be your only measurement when purchasing replacement windows. You also need to consider energy efficiency, the best material for the climate, and the cost of maintenance. All these add up to getting you the best deal on replacement windows in Phoenix, AZ. Still have questions? Contact Freelite at (602) 233-1981 or 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

Breaking it Down: All About Insulated Glass Units (IGUs)

Keeping your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter usually comes down to your windows. They are the weakest link in the exterior envelope of your home and the most likely culprit in energy and air leaks. The same brutal elements that impact your roofing and siding also beat down on your windows day in and day out.

While roofing and siding are made from solid, hardy materials meant to withstand the elements, windows are more delicately constructed. They are devices of glass and moving parts housed within a frame. The core element of the window is the insulated glass unit (IGU). For hundreds of year’s, single pane windows were standard. Now it is rare to find an unsealed window. Here is what you need to know about IGUs.

What is an IGU?
These typically consist of two or more flat panes of glass (glass-lites) separated by a spacer and sealed together at the edges. Each pane of glass has two surfaces. So double-glazing has four surfaces and one space between, and triple-glazing has six surfaces with two spaces between. Glass options include clear, low-e, tinted, laminated, reflective, and decorative. They are sealed because the space between contains an air vacuum or a low conductivity gas like krypton or argon. These combinations of two or three panes of glass improve the thermal performance, keeping heat out during the summer and heat in during the winter. And when paired with reflective, low-e coatings the IGUs perform even better.

Additional Benefits of IGUs
Depending on the type of glass and coatings an IGU can be designed for:
• Sound control
• Improved security
• Privacy glass
• Decorative applications
• Bullet resistance
• UV light screening
• Light and solar control
• Hurricane, earthquake, and blast resistance

Gas vs Air in an IGU
Argon and krypton are noble gasses that have more density than air. They are not as reactive and do not conduct as much heat. A 90% argon gas fill will improve the u-value by 16% and a krypton gas fill improves the u-value up to 27%. Unfortunately, the partial pressure differentials between outside air and the inert gas will cause a slow leak. Argon and krypton typically escape at a rate of about 1% per year, even in a perfectly constructed IGU. The lifespan of an IGU will vary depending on the quality of materials and construction, the size of the gap between panes, the surrounding climate, and the temperature differences between the interior and exterior.

How do you Know if a Seal Has Failed?
A failed IGU is typically characterized as foggy, hazy, or milky. So look for moisture or a white scale that cannot be cleaned away. And while some seal failure will not have moisture, it is the most common occurrence. Sometimes the gas leaks out and the space does not backfill with air. In these cases the two lites can distort as they start to collapse towards each other in the center. The lites may even break.

Why Does Seal Failure Matter?
In a moderate climate, seal failure may not be such a big deal. But in an extreme climate, like that of Phoenix, AZ, a failed seal will definitely impact energy efficiency and comfort. Glazing or full replacement windows Mesa, AZ is the best solution. For an evaluation and quote, contact Freelite. Call today at (602) 233-1981 or stop by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 to talk with one of our experts.

Prepare your Home or Winter in Phoenix, AZ

While Phoenix, AZ isn’t known for harsh winters, the temperatures still get cold in December and January. Sometimes they even drop below freezing at night and only hit the mid 50s during the day. And with colder weather just around the corner, you want to make sure your home is ready. Here are five easy steps to follow that will help prepare your home for a local winter.

1. Install Weather Stripping
One way to test the seals around your doors is to close everything up, turn on all the exhaust fans and run a burning candle around the frames. If the light pulls towards you, then you probably have a draft. You can easily run to the nearest hardware store and look for weatherstripping. If you have any questions you can ask a clerk for the right product and how best to install it.

2. Clean Your Fireplace
Even in Arizona, a fireplace is a great addition to your home. Nothing beats a warm, welcoming fire on a cold night. But before using, it you want to double check your fireplace and chimney. Make sure your hearth and flue are free of debris and sweep away any lingering soot. Then it is safe to test your electric or as fireplace to make sure they are working.

3. Seal the Furnace Ducts and Replace Filters
While it isn’t quite time to turn the furnace on, you will want to test it in the fall to make sure everything is in working order. Remove any dust from the vents and intakes. And you will also want to swap out the filter on your furnace, and continue to replace them every month during seasons of higher usage. This will keep your HVAC system dust free and running efficiently. And if you haven’t this year, schedule a tune up. HVAC professionals can provide a seasonal inspection and make any minor repairs your furnace might need before it goes to work this winter.

4. Reverse the Ceiling Fans
Air ventilation and circulation can be a problem in the winter. So set your fan blades to spin clockwise and run them slowly. This will help lift cooled air to the ceiling and push the heated air back down. You will be able to set the thermostat a couple degrees lower and save money while still all the warmth inside your home.

5. Prepare Your Windows
There are many ways to treat your windows for the colder months. Some homeowners use weatherstripping or an insulating film. Others simply use cellular shades or layered curtains to protect the inside of their home against the cold. But if your windows are old, worn down, and prone to air leaks—there is only one real solution. You will want to take a closer look at replacement windows Phoenix, AZ this fall.

Call Freelite today at (602) 233-1981 for a hassle free quote. We offer our customers a hassle-free, no-pressure way to look at and purchase windows and doors. We carry Milgard, Pella, and Marvin windows. With our highest standards of excellence, you are sure to get the right product at the right price. Still not sure about new windows? Stop by our showroom at 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 and check out some of our products.

Three Things to Know About Buying Windows in a Hot Climate

If your home is getting up there in years, your windows might need to be replaced. But buying windows can be stressful and complicated. There is no simple, one-size-fits-all product that will work well in every situation. And when investing hundreds of dollars into your home, this is a decision you want to get right. Here is some information that will help make sense of all the new advancements and window technologies you can find for replacement windows in Scottsdale, AZ.

1. Replacement Windows are More Energy Efficient
The first thing you want to figure out is how to read the energy labels on your replacement windows. In hot climates, a low Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) is the most important window property. It tells you how much solar heat is transmitted through the window. You want a rating of 0.25 of less. You also want a U-factor of 0.4 or less. This rating expresses the window’s resistance to non-solar heat flow. And you want an Air Leakage (AL) rating of 0.3 or less. All of these combine to give you superior energy performance for homes in Scottsdale, AZ.

2. Choose Low-E Coatings
Harsh ultraviolet light and solar radiation causes unwanted heat. It can also cause fabrics to fade and break down. In some cases, window glazing is tinted to reduce heat gains. And while they block unwanted heat gains, some coatings block out natural light as well. If you want the best of both worlds (natural light without unwanted heat and damage), then you need to choose replacement windows with low-e glass. This ultra-thin layer of silver or tin oxide reflects unwanted solar heat while still allowing in plenty of natural light. You get improved daylighting and better efficiency.

3. You Don’t Need Triple Glazed Windows for Energy Efficiency
A common misconception is that you need triple pane glass for optimal efficiency. While this is true in cold climates, an extra pane of glass doesn’t improve energy efficiency that much in warmer climates. Sure, it will be more energy efficient, but usually there are not enough savings to justify the cost. However, if you live near and airport or on a busy street, triple pane windows will insulate against the sound. They also are not as easy to break through. So if you are looking for quiet along with peace of mind, you might give triple pane windows a closer look.

Call Freelite for a Free In-Home Evaluation and Quote
Windows don’t last forever. In fact, the harsher climate will cut in to the lifespan of almost any construction grade material. They will become warped, faded, or brittle over time. And as the material breaks down, so does the efficiency. Outdated windows will be a major source of unwanted heat gains and losses and start jacking up your heating and cooling costs. To keep your home comfortable, you will literally be throwing money out the window. That is why you can’t ignore old windows.

At Freelite, we know what customers in Scottsdale, AZ like and don’t like about buying new windows. That is why we offer an easy, no-hassle way to buy. You can get premium quality replacement windows Scottsdale, AZ at a price to fit your budget. Call (602) 233-1981 for an appointment or stop by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 today.

Should I Get Inswing or Outswing Patio Doors?

In Scottsdale, AZ, your exterior doors are a fundamental part of your home—especially patio doors. These open up your home to the outdoors and give you seamless transitions. They allow guests to come and go, as well as connect you with the backyard so you can make the most of your property and indoor/outdoor living spaces. But when installing hinged patio doors, you have some important decisions to make. One of those is deciding if you want an outswinging or inswinging door. Here are the things you need to keep in mind:

Spatial Considerations
This is the first thing to consider…do you have enough room for inswing or outswing doors? Evaluate the space and what is available. If you have patio furniture or a kitchen table positioned directly in front of the door, you might have to move things around to make room for the doors you want. Where there are structural obstructions, like walls, rails or fences, you will have to be more careful when choosing inswing vs outswing doors.

Easy Operation
Outswing doors are usually a little smoother. This is because they feature a compression gasket and positive stop. These help create a weather tight seal, but do not produce unnecessary friction. On the other hand, inswing doors require a sweep gasket along the bottom seal. Friction is necessary and helps seal the gasket tightly against the threshold. Unfortunately, the side effect is these doors do not operate as smoothly.

Protection Against Water and Air Leaks
Outswing doors work much like casement windows. As wind blows against them, the seal actually tightens. This makes outswing doors less susceptible to air and water leaks. Inswing doors have the opposite problem. The seal often weakens against the wind, which makes them more vulnerable to air and moisture leaks. You will need to adjust the sweep gasket as necessary and stay on top of the weather stripping, replacing it before it wears out.

There are pros and cons to both. Inswing doors have hinges located on the inside, which is great for security. However, because they swing inward, they are easier to force open. To counteract this, you want to choose hinged patio doors with multi-point locking systems and heavy-duty strike plates. Outswing doors are a little more secure and difficult to force open. But the hinges are located on the outside, so you want to make sure your patio doors have non-removable pins. That way, you can eliminate a potential threat to your home.

Door Swing Codes
You might not have noticed that commercial buildings have outswing or sliding doors. This is required by an international building code for safety during evacuations. Inswing doors would create a hoard of people pressed up against the doors in an emergency, trapping people inside. Also, doors in hurricane prone areas must swing outward and doors in snow prone areas must swing inward. You don’t really have to worry about either of those in Scottsdale, AZ, but it is still good to check with building codes and regulations to make sure your doors meet the local standards.

Freelite Offers the Best Hinged Patio Doors
At Freelite, we take great pride in the products and brands we offer. We install only the highest quality and most energy efficient windows Scottsdale, AZ. To come check out our products stop by our showroom at 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003. Or you can call to set up an appointment at (602) 233-1981.

Irresistible Benefits of Installing French Doors

One of the great advantages to living in Scottsdale, AZ is the potential for great indoor and outdoor luxury living. Patio doors play a huge part by giving you convenient access between living spaces while still protecting your home against the environment. That is, as long as your patio door is not inefficient or outdated. Many traditional sliding doors wear out quickly and become squeaky, cumbersome, and unsightly. When it is time for replacement, you don’t have to go with the same style and results. Instead, you can choose French patio doors and enjoy the benefits that come with them:

1. Timeless Appeal
French doors have a traditional elegance that is hard to match. They are functional, but also more welcoming and romantic. They can also serve as a window since the large glass panes allow in ample natural light and compliment almost any architectural design.

2. Easy Access and Smooth Transitions
These hinged doors do not operate on a track. They open and close easily and there is no threshold to cross over. You can choose to have the doors swing inward or outward from the center, depending on your needs. This means the opening will be twice as wide as the opening for sliding doors. You can easily accommodate large gatherings and furniture. And while easy to operate, these doors are not easy to kick in or pry open. The secure locking system can bring extra peace of mind.

3. Exterior Aluminum Cladding for Weatherability
While many homeowners love the look and feel of real wood, they do not love how the material can chip, crack, and fade with prolonged exposure to harsh ultraviolet light. This is a big concern in Scottsdale, AZ. Fortunately, our French doors come with aluminum cladding in a wide range of colors. This solves the problem of premature weathering and gives you strong, durable doors that are built to last.

4. Between the Glass Shade Options
These modern patio doors have clean and beautiful sightlines. It would be a shame to ruin them with window coverings. Luckily, with our French doors, you can also eliminate the need for cumbersome blinds, drapes, and shutters. Instead, you can opt for between the glass blinds or shades. It is a streamlined design with stunning results.

5. Most Energy Efficient Wood Door
Best of all, new French doors in Scottsdale, AZ can save you money on energy expenses. These doors have options for low-e and insulating glass. You can choose the right coatings to suit your home’s location and orientation. This will reduce unwanted heat transfer while still allowing natural light through the glass.

If you are tired of your old sliding doors and want to upgrade your indoor/outdoor living space in Scottsdale, AZ, call Freelite today at (602) 233-1981. You can stop by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 to check out some of our French doors in person. Or we can schedule an in-home consultation and answer any questions you might have. With Freelite, your satisfaction is guaranteed.

Aluminum vs Vinyl Windows for a Hot Climate

In Mesa, AZ, we have some of the harshest environments—bright light, high heat, and low humidity. Few materials hold up well in those conditions, which can make it feel like you have super limited options for replacement windows. The truth is, there are window frames that work well in hot, dry climates. And the frame material you choose will have a huge impact on aesthetics, function, and energy efficiency. But which is the better choice? Vinyl and aluminum windows are both very popular, and each has distinct pros and cons, especially in hot climates. This is what you should know:

Pros of Aluminum Windows
Aluminum windows are very light, but still strong. They can hold larger panes of glass without the need for mullions. This can open up breathtaking views and bring a more modern appeal to your home. And because they are so durable, these windows do not require a lot of maintenance. This is especially true if you chose windows with a factory-baked or anodized finish. They are also versatile and you can get both pre-set and custom windows you can paint almost any color.

Cons of Aluminum Windows
One of the greatest problems with aluminum is thermal transference. These windows do not hold in or keep out heat very well. Fortunately, you can improve the energy efficiency of aluminum windows by fitting a non-conductive material between the frames and choosing low-e glass panes. And because the windows are so durable, many homeowners will compromise on energy efficiency to get the larger window openings and longer lasting material. That said, these windows have mid-range pricing and will be more expensive than vinyl.

Pros of Vinyl Windows
Vinyl windows Mesa, AZ is another popular choice. These windows are highly energy efficient and do not conduct as much heat. They are also practically maintenance free and will not scratch, dent, or rust. And while choices are not as varied, you do get several color and style options. Vinyl windows are also some of the most affordable options on the market and can be recycled. It is no wonder they are in such high demand, but they do come with some setbacks.

Cons of Vinyl Windows
These windows have a fairly low melting point. The material can start to soften at just 147 degrees. So if your vinyl window is exposed to the sun and gets excessively hot, it can start to warp and sag. Then, once it cools, there is no way to get it back to the original shape. PVC also expands and contracts more than glass. As a result, seal failure is also more common with vinyl windows. In that same vein, caulking and sealants can often separate from vinyl windows. Both air and water can get between the window and the house framing, causing any number of problems.

Check out Freelite Today!
Still having trouble deciding on the right replacement windows for your Mesa, AZ home? Stop by our storefront at 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 or call (602) 233-1981. You get an easy, hassle-free way to buy replacement windows. We can help you find the right product for the harshest climate at the right price.

Pros and Cons of Different Patio Doors

Patio doors can be one of the most popular features in your home. Not only do they give you convenient access to the outdoors, but they also fill your space with light and become a focal point of any room. Unfortunately old sliding doors tend to draw the wrong kind of attention. Dilapidated screens, rust, chipping paint, rickety operation—you don’t want to deal with that day in and day out. Once you decide it is time for a replacement you have a few decisions to make. One of the first things to consider is style. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of the leading patio doors on the market.

Sliding Patio Doors
These are widely popular and what most people picture when you talk about patio doors. Also known as gliding or bypass doors, sliding doors consist of two or more individual panels with at least one that slides horizontally on hidden rollers. They do not take up unnecessary floor space or interfere with furniture. You can install one, or arrange them in a variety of combinations to create a wide expanse of glass for tons of natural light. Unfortunately sliding doors are not the most energy efficient option and you would have to pay for upgrades like triple pane glass and higher quality material. Also the track creates a threshold you have to step over.

Swinging Patio Doors
Hinged doors are just like other entry doors, attached to the doorframe on hinges and can open in or out based on your preference. For the patio, homeowners often choose full glass panels and hang them in pairs. These are often seen in more traditional style homes. The most popular configurations are French doors or atrium doors. French doors are usually the most affordable option. They are mounted side by side and both doors are active, swinging open from the center. These are great for hosting large crowds or moving large objects in and out of your home. With atrium doors just one side is operable. These give you the appearance of French doors, but do not require as much floor space.

Folding Patio Doors
These systems open an even wider amount of space to the outdoors. They operate accordion style on an overhead track, folding neatly out of the way. These work best in more modern homes. You can choose from a few styles and install anywhere from two to eight panels. They also have several locking points to help keep them secure.

What Material Should I Choose?
More than style, the material you choose for patio doors will often dictate the price.
• Wood. This is a great insulator with unmatched beauty, but you will be paying more up front and doing more maintenance down the road.
• Fiberglass. This material is lightweight but strong, and can hold up in the most extreme conditions. You can also paint fiberglass and it doesn’t require as much maintenance. It too is often more expensive.
• Vinyl. This is a happy medium and one of the most affordable construction materials on the market. It is strong, light, durable, and an excellent insulator.

Call Freelite for Patio Doors in Mesa, AZ
If your old patio doors are too much trouble, then now is a great time to call (602) 233-1981. We carry a variety of styles from brands you can trust. We will answer all of your questions about patio doors Mesa, AZ and offer you a no-hassle, no-pressure way to buy. Stop by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 to check out some of our products today.

Is Fall a Good Time to Buy Replacement Windows?

With the heat of summer winding down and cooler fall weather on the way, you will want your windows in Mesa, AZ in top shape. If they have been giving you trouble all summer long, you don’t have to wait until spring. Now is a great time to schedule for replacement windows. Here are a few reasons why fall is the perfect time for your replacement windows.

Do you Need Replacement Windows?
New windows are an investment. So just to be sure, there are several things to watch for that will tell you if your windows are ready for replacement. If you notice drafts or heat coming through your windows while they are closed, condensation forming between the panes, or higher energy expenses, these are all signs you could benefit from new windows. Old windows might not lock securely, or open and close with ease.

1. Perfect Weather
Window companies can place new windows any time of year, not just in ideal conditions. They can do it in the middle of summer or the dead of winter. That said, installations tend to go better when it isn’t too hot or too cold. During installation your home is open to the outside. Just like spring and early summer, fall has moderate temperatures and more mild weather conditions. Your home will not waste heating and air conditioning if you choose to get replacement windows in the fall.

2. Less Busy
Most people plan to get new windows in spring, along with doing several other home improvements and renovations. The weather conditions are optimal which also makes it a busy season for many installation companies. Your project might get pushed back and you are at the mercy of busy schedules. Fall is a better time to call for replacement windows. Most people are already busy getting back to work and school after vacations. They don’t want to add more to their to-do lists. So you get in right away and get your new windows faster.

3. Energy Savings
It is also good to get windows replaced before winter, to improve the heating efficiency of your home. New windows will trap the heat inside and keep the cold air out. While Mesa, AZ doesn’t drop as low as Minnesota, new windows can still give you significant savings in heating costs.

4. Perfect Timing
Most replacement window projects take six to eight weeks from the date you sign the contract to completion. So if you get in now for your free, in-home consultation we can schedule your installation for early fall—just in time for you to start enjoying them before the rest of the season and winter sets in.

Don’t Wait any Longer
If you are ready for replacement windows in Mesa, AZ then fall is a great time of year to call Freelite. We offer a hassle-free, no-pressure way to buy. We work with only the highest standards of excellence and help you get the right windows at the right price. You can reach us at (602) 233-1981 or stop by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

How to Find the Best Company for New Windows and Doors

When looking for new windows and doors, you don’t start with the products. You start by finding a reputable company. Because there are so many options and you want the job done right, this takes some serious consideration. You don’t want to find out later that your windows and doors are failing because they were not properly installed. Here are a few tips to help you find the right window and door company for the job:

1. Focus on Window and Door Professionals
A general contractor can work on your window and door project. But the service will not compare to window installers who handle replacements every day. You should focus on companies that work exclusively with windows and doors.

2. Look at Their History
You want a local company that is well established and does a lot of business in the area. As you might guess, more mature companies come with less risk. Also, locals will know the current building codes and the best materials and products for where you live.

3. Read Reviews
Go online and read some testimonials and reviews. Social media can be a valuable resource for narrowing things down. Another thing you want to do is get a list of references from the company, anywhere from five to ten names. That way you can find out if customers are happy with the installations they received. Some might even let you stop by to see the work first hand. This will be valuable information when making your decision.

4. Verifying Insurance and Licensing
You don’t just want a skilled installation team, but one that has gone through the process of acquiring an applicable business license and insurance. Get the business address, contact number, website, and tax identification number. Then you can use that information to check resources like the Better Business Bureau.

5. Know Where the Windows and Doors Come From
A lot of installation companies purchase products from a third party, instead of manufacturing windows and doors themselves. At Freelite we do our research and only sell products from companies we can stand behind.

6. Get a Detailed Bid
You want more than just pricing. The bid you receive should outline the products and materials as well as the services and labor that is included (or not included) in the price. It should also list the predicted start and finish dates for your project. The more specific the bid is, the less likely chance of a misunderstanding from either side.

7. Ask About Site Preparation and Clean Up
You want to be sure about what you are responsible for and what the company will take care of during installation. You also want to hire someone who will treat your home as if it were their own.

Ready to Choose your Window and Door Company?
We have over 30 years in the business and know exactly what customers like and don’t like. You get a free, no-hassle consultation and quote for new windows Mesa, AZ. Our installation team takes great care with your property, and your satisfaction is guaranteed. It is the best way to get new windows and doors. Call Freelite at (602) 233-1981 or come by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.

Five Questions Customers Always Ask about Vinyl Windows

Replacing your windows is a major investment, and not something homeowners have to worry about too often. Most people don’t even think about it until their old windows become intolerable. It is no wonder so many people have questions when it comes to the right material for their new windows. If you want the right products at the right price, then you will need to do a little research. Here are some frequently asked questions about vinyl windows to help you get started.

1. How Does Vinyl Compare to Other Materials?
Compared to all other materials, vinyl windows are usually the most affordable option. However, that lower price doesn’t mean you are settling for lower quality. Vinyl is durable and long lasting. It also maintains shape in extreme temperatures and will not warp or fade. And because the material does not conduct heat, vinyl windows are great insulators. With so many benefits it is no wonder these windows are some of the most popular options on the market.

2. Do Vinyl Windows Require Special Maintenance?
Unlike wood that you need to sand down and refinish every couple of years, vinyl does not need any special maintenance to stay looking like new. You simply wash your windows and window frames every couple of months with mild soap and glass cleaner. You should also clear out the track and spray it with a silicone lubricant to keep operation smooth and easy. Aside from that, you have very little to worry about.

3. Do I still Have Style and Color Options?
While your choices are not as varied as wood or fiberglass, you still have options. Vinyl is highly versatile. You can choose from picture, casement, awning, sliding, bay, double-hung. In addition to a variety of styles, you also have several color options to choose from. For the most part you will have neutral color choices like white, ivory, tan, and brown. But there are also some brands that include bolder options as well. You are sure to find vinyl windows to suite your personal taste.

4. When Can I Install Vinyl Windows?
You do not have to wait for a certain time of year. Professional installers can place your windows anytime, rain or shine. And because windows are such an important feature in your home, you do not want to put off installation waiting for the ideal conditions.

5. How Do Vinyl Windows Look?
Amazing! Vinyl windows can improve the look of any room in any home, especially if you have been putting the upgrade off for a while. You can match them to the architectural style of your home and get a great return on your investment if you are looking to sell.

Call Freelite for More Information
Have more questions about vinyl windows in Mesa, AZ? Do not hesitate to call our Freelite office at (602) 233-1981. We carry a few brands and will make sure to get all your questions answered with no-hassle and no-pressure. Stop by 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003 to look at some of our vinyl windows and see for yourself.

Which Patio Door Material is Best for Phoenix, AZ?

If you are looking to install new patio doors in Phoenix, AZ, there are several factors to consider. Not only do you get to choose a style, but also, and perhaps more importantly, you get to choose a material. You want something that will look great, match the rest of your home, and hold up in the long run. But what do you choose? Wood, metal, vinyl, or fiberglass? Here are some of the pros and cons of each popular patio door material. Hopefully, this information will make the decision process a little easier.

  1. Wood Patio Doors

Wood has a distinctive appearance and provides an elegant, traditional style for your home. It is also an excellent thermal insulator and will cut down on heat transfer. Unfortunately, wood patio doors will require constant upkeep, which can quickly turn into a hassle. Even though the material is often more expensive, it does scratch, warp, rot, and fade because of heat and moisture (or even a lack of moisture). So be sure to keep that in mind.

  1. Steel Patio Doors

These options can hold up in a variety of conditions. The material will not warp or bow because of the heat. Steel patio doors also require less maintenance and are less expensive than wood. That said, steel can scratch and dent—which can lead to rust. Also, because metal is not a great thermal insulator, these doors tend to get very hot to the touch.

  1. Aluminum Patio Doors

These are similar to steel patio doors. The material is meant to hold up under a variety of conditions and require less upkeep. The main difference is that aluminum patio doors are lighter than steel ones. They also tend to be more affordable. However, many of the issues you get with steel doors are magnified with aluminum. They dent and scratch more easily and are more prone to rust if the exterior finish is compromised.

  1. Vinyl Patio Doors

Today vinyl products are everywhere, even in construction. Patio doors are no exception. While it is a plastic-based material, vinyl is light, durable, and resistant. Heat and moisture will not be a problem. The doors will not warp, rust, corrode, or fade. Vinyl patio doors are also energy efficient, locking the heat outside and keeping the cool air in. Best of all, these patio doors are practically maintenance free. You will not have to sand and repaint. Simply wash them with mild soap to keep them looking new.

  1. Fiberglass Patio Doors

Over the years, fiberglass has grown in popularity. It is a well-designed alternative to wood and steel that requires almost no maintenance. In fact, fiberglass patio doors Phoenix, AZ can mimic wood and steel perfectly without the setbacks. You can also paint or stain this material for an exact match to the color of your home. These doors are energy efficient, durable, and can handle extreme temperatures. However, fiberglass will often cost you the most.

Which Material Should I Choose?

Any of these materials will work in Phoenix, AZ. You just need to ask yourself what kind of upkeep you are willing to do and how much you can afford. If you still have questions, call Freelite. You can contact us at (602) 233-1981 or visit our showroom, 331 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85003.