7 Steps to Save on Blinds & Curtains With an Acrylic Or Glass Block Bathroom Window
When most people choose a replacement window for their bathroom they only tend to think about the cost of the window – and don’t include the cost of the blinds and curtains. In a bathroom high privacy is often desired but minimal thought is given to the “all-in” (window + window treatment) costs. These complete replacement costs are one big reason to consider an acrylic or glass block bathroom window. Here are 5 steps to think through in your decision making process.
Step 1 – Identify the problems with your existing products – Spending money on any type of replacement window should be focused on providing a new product which will eliminate the problems associated with the old window. Some of the more common problems associated with old bathroom windows include – rotten or rusted frames, poor insulation value, lack of privacy, or the inability to operate the existing unit to mention just a few.
Step 2 – Consider your need for privacy – Is your bath window located on the first floor where someone could walk right up to it or it on the 2nd floor on the side of a home which is close to a neighbor’s house? Given the high cost of land homes are getting built closer and closer together. If privacy is a concern (and you want to eliminate the cost of curtains/blinds) choosing a high privacy acrylic block or glass block pattern can be an excellent choice for your replacement. You can also consider frosted obscure glass as an option as well.
Step 3 – Evaluate if the opening is in a wet area – Is this window located in the bathroom or in the tub/shower area? Are you currently having any problem with a rotted or rusted frame? Windows in wet areas can be very difficult to deal with. A wood or metal frame can only lead to problems down the road. Consider using a vinyl, acrylic, or glass block window for this area. The vinyl/acrylic option is good because the frames don’t absorb water. The block option is often preferred because it is frequently frameless and mortared into the opening (eliminating a need for future maintenance).
Step 4 – Consider your need for air flow and ventilation – Since bathrooms are wet areas it is nice to have either an exhaust fan or ventilation. The most common vinyl and acrylic block window types are double hung (usually the most cost effective) which open up and down, casements which crank open, and sliders which open from side to side. A glass block bath window can also have an operable air vent built into it as well.
Step 5 – Ask if you want a more decorative or functional unit – Why settle for a “vanilla” window (a plain white version) when you can add style to your room. There are many patterns or etched, beveled and colored glass to add interest to the room. Also there are colored and wood grain frames to match with many interior/exterior decor themes.
Step 6 – Get cost estimates for the window + window treatments – Don’t just get window estimate costs – consider your complete replacement costs (the window + the window treatment). With a high privacy glass or window type (like acrylic or glass blocks) you can often cut your costs, add privacy and style simultaneously.
Step 7 – Determine if it’s the right time to buy- The time to purchase may never be better. The government is still offering a $1,500 energy tax credit on windows with a U value of.30 or better. You’ll need to note that not all products will be eligible for this credit.
Make sure to be thorough in your bathroom replacement window decision making process. Follow these 7 steps to make an informed choice that will provide you with the most value.