Posts Tagged ‘windows and doors’

What Are The Best Windows To Buy?

Friday, May 29th, 2009

Often people ask me, “Marty, what are the best windows to buy? Aluminum, Wood, PVC or Hybrid?”

When it comes to the environment, most windows and doors today are energy efficient especially if you buy ones that are Energy Star Rated with thermal glass, low E coating and argon gas. When it comes to decor, cost and durability, however, differences become more apparent.

The first question I ask my clients is, what do you want to look at?

Let me give you a few things to think about.

Windows made of aluminum inside and out are the least popular today. Aluminum has become more costly and is much colder to the touch in the winter and seems to radiate cold off the aluminum.  Decorating options are limited with aluminum, mostly bright white inside and a few more colours for the outside. Again – what do you want to look at?

Which brings us to why PVC windows have become more popular. They are very energy efficient. Although they are mostly bright white plastic inside and out, they are the least expensive, are warmer to the touch and don’t give off that feeling of cold that aluminum does.

Wood windows are often the preferred choice. They are warm to the touch, are highly energy efficient and create a much richer look.  Wood windows give you unlimited decorating options as they can be painted or stained any colour to suit any interior decor.

The outside of the house is another matter. What goes best with the colour of your brick or stone ? Here is where the term “Hybrid” comes in. What that means is combining two materials – aluminum outside, wood or PVC  on the inside. For the outside of a house aluminum is very durable and is factory painted in many available colours with a finish that is guaranteed for many years. In addition, it makes the exterior of wood windows maintenance free, protecting the wood from the elements.

When shopping for windows, you may become confused by terminology that doesn’t really mean much to you. You see your friends‘ windows and they tell you how happy they are. My advice: Drive around and look and see what white plastic looks like on a dark brick or a rich stone house and ask yourself, “what do I want to look at?” then call in a professional to get a real assessment of your needs.

Buying Canadian Windows & Doors

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

We are lucky here in Canada, because we happen to manufacture some of the highest quality wood windows and doors in North America.
Here is my question, though: Why are Canadian architects’ specifications and general contractors’ recommendations so frequently for American window manufacturers?

Are American windows and doors cheaper? NO.
We can match their prices, or even do better.

Is American quality better? NO.
Our windows are built with extreme Quebec weather in mind.

With the world in a financial crisis,  jobs are being lost in almost all sectors. I believe that we have lost around 30 to 50 million dollars in business to American window and door companies. That’s a lot of windows and doors that could have been made right here in our own country, employing our own people.

Let’s not forget the many other Canadian businesses that supply materials to the Canadian window and door manufacturers: ie: the forestry industry, wood, hardware, aluminum, glass, thermo and screen distributors and manufacturers, they too, have lost jobs and workers.

Why should we support small towns in the United States? Shouldn’t we be keeping the money right here in Canada, and keep our people working?

In these difficult economic times, I think we have a responsibility to consider the consequences of our actions. Before you buy your windows and doors, think, as a Canadian, about how your purchase affects other Canadians and what you are losing by buying American.

Even if you don’t buy from my company, Martin Industries, at the very least, do your best to buy a Canadian product.

~Marty Cooper