Thermo-Bilt blog

Bay window seat in modern home

Improve Your Home With Bay Windows

Windows are an important piece of your home’s interior and exterior design. They bring in the beautiful outdoor views and give an opportunity for sunlight to reach deep inside your home. There really is no better comfort than large, beautiful windows in any room. When choosing new or replacement windows, you may be overwhelmed with the number of options. One of the most popular choices for major living spaces are bay windows. Bay windows bring a wide array of advantages to both the interior and exterior of a home. Here are a few ways bay window installation can improve your home:

More Natural Light

Arguably, the greatest feature of bay windows is the natural light they let into a home. The large surface area they cover and their outward shape allow for copious amounts of beautiful sunlight to soak your favourite living spaces. Exposure to natural sunlight improves people’s moods and creates a cozy space to spend time with your family.

Wide Availability

One of the great things about bay windows is that for all the advantages they bring, they’re also widely available. Unlike other unique windows, they are not difficult to find and therefore do not have long wait times. Take a look at some of our durable and stylish bay windows!

Creates a Unique Space

They are a great option for individuals looking to increase their space. The outward shape gives the illusion that a room is bigger without doing any major renovations. Another desirable option is building a window seat using the bay window’s open space – the perfect place to curl up with a cup of coffee or a good book.

Increases Home Value

A hidden advantage of installing bay windows is it increases your home’s market value. They are highly desirable to home buyers and are seen as a structural improvement to the home. Therefore, it supplies a greater return on your investment.

Enhanced Curb Appeal

Not only do bay windows bring in natural light and increased space to your home’s interior, they also enhance your home’s exterior and curb appeal. They are an elegant and visually appealing addition to your home’s facade and structure. Do you think bay windows are a great option for your home? Are you ready to install replacement windows in your home? Contact us at Thermo-Bilt, our licensed and certified team will address all your home needs and work within your budget to achieve the perfect windows for your home. Call us at 416-756-0798 for a FREE quote on new bay windows today!
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Cleaning windows for home.

Top Tips for Cleaning Windows

It’s that time of year again, when people focus on cleaning and reorganizing their homes - especially the things that we’ve held off during the winter. One big priority is clearing the season’s buildup of dirt and giving your windows a new clear shine. While this may seem like a daunting task, it can actually be really simple and fun. Follow these easy tips to clean your windows and bring them back to their original shine:

Choose a Nice Day

Many people assume that a warm, sunny day is the best option for optimal window cleaning. However, too much sun or heat can cause the cleaning solution to stick to your windows before you have a chance to wash it off. To avoid this problem, choose a dry or cloudy day, or start washing your windows on the shaded side of the house.

Preparation

The best part of washing windows is lathering up soapy bubbles and rinsing it all off with water! But before you begin, remember to dust off the window sills first. A lot of dirt, debris and leaves collect on the sills and when soap and water is added it can create a big, sloppy mess. Take a few minutes to clean and sweep the sills before washing - you’ll save yourself a lot of work later on.

Use Enough Window Cleaner

Don’t skimp out on the amount of window cleaner you use. Especially if it’s the first time you’re cleaning your windows for the season. They may have plenty of dirt built up and could use some extra TLC (aka window cleaner). Window cleaner cuts through the tough dirt to ensure your windows are stripped of all their residue.

Use a Squeegee

Many people make the mistake of not using a squeegee when washing outdoor windows. Using a squeegee scrapes away any excess water and soap, which helps to avoid streaks when the window dries.

Add Vinegar

If you don’t have a squeegee, one of the oldest tricks to avoid streaking is to add vinegar in your window washing mixture. This natural and non-toxic ingredient is a miracle worker. For each part water, add one part vinegar for best results.

Remove the Window Screens

If you want to be really thorough, take out the screens and find an open area outside to clean them. Use your window cleaning solution and scrub the screens to remove the dirt and debris between the mesh lining. Let them air dry and reinstall them. Remember, no matter how clean your windows look always ensure they function properly. If you have excess condensation, drafts, or cracks it may be time for new replacement windows! Contact Thermo-Bilt for new vinyl windows and professional installation this summer. Call us at 416-756-0798 for a FREE quote!
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21.04.2018

Unique Windows From Around The World

You may think of windows as a necessity for your home. They provide a view to the outdoors and allow natural light and ventilation to reach your living spaces. While this is true, they can be so much more! Around the world, creative designers and engineers have come up with new and unique windows that give any home added character that adds a variety of unique and creative styles. Here are some of our favourite unique and modern window designs from around the world:

Curved Windows

We love curved windows because they provide a unique view from the inside outdoors. They capture the scenery in a different frame and can creatively fit into wall spaces where a traditional rectangular window will not. Windows can also be curved outwards from the home in a spherical shape creating a slight overhang from the wall. These types of windows make it possible to get a holistic view of beautiful scenery or the cityscape, all from the comfort of your home.

Geometric Shapes

Similar to curved windows, geometrically shaped windows can work in spaces where traditional rectangular windows cannot. While this practical feature is a huge benefit, it’s their abnormality that we love. Windows that are designed in a geometric shape grab people’s attention and they give both the exterior and interior of a home either a very contemporary or a very traditional feel. Be adventurous and consider shapes such as circles, diamonds, triangles, pentagons and hexagons!

Window Walls

Why have a wall blocking your view when you could replace it with a gigantic window? Window walls are elegant and are especially desirable if you have beautiful outdoor surroundings. You will receive an incredible amount of natural sunlight into your home with this type of window and will feel constantly more connected with nature.

Industrial Windows

In the modern décor world, industrial themes have become very popular. Windows are a great piece to adapt to match these industrial trends. Try framing the glass creatively with metal rods or pipes to give your windows an industrial edge.

Window Seats

After all the time, effort and money spent ensuring you have unique and modern window designs in your home, you are going to want to enjoy them! A great idea is to combine seating right into your window. Rather than a shallow window sill, use the space for a seat or a bench where you can soak up the sun and enjoy your views. This concept works particularly well in curved windows or more traditional window designs such as bay or bow windows. Europe and Asia are particularly well-known for their modern and unique window designs. They use their space creatively and believe in combining style and functionality to make every home reflect its residents. Follow in their footsteps and bring these influences to North America! Are you ready to spice up your home with some unique or modern windows influenced by designs from around the world? Contact us at Thermo-Bilt to get started on your replacement windows today!
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Home security new windows for home.

The Best Windows for Home Security

The number one priority for most homeowners is the safety and security of their family. Another priority is style. Everyone wants their house to reflect their unique tastes and feel like a home. It is unfortunate, but sometimes the safety and security of your home can come at the cost of personal style. However, when it comes to new windows - this doesn’t have to be the case! Windows are one of the main areas of concern when it comes to keeping your home secure. They can be a gateway inside for outdoor threats. The good news is that many already popular styles of windows are also some of the best for home security.

Casement Windows

Casement windows are considered to be one of the most secure types of windows because they can only be opened with a hand crank from the inside. This feature makes it very difficult for burglars to open a casement window. Intruders aren’t the only safety feature to consider. Casement window design also eliminates the risk of the window blowing open in inclement weather.

Sliding Windows

When there is not enough clearance outside for a casement window to open properly, sliding windows are often an effective alternative. Equipped with a cam-action lock, it is very difficult to slide the window open and closed from the outside, especially when the tension is set on high.

Double Hung Windows

In addition to the worry of outdoor threats entering the home, there may also be a concern for a child or beloved pet escaping. Double hung windows address this issue because you are able to open the top pane for ventilation and children and pets will not be able to access the opening at such a height. If you are not in the market for new windows or these styles of windows don’t suit your tastes or needs, consider enhancing your already existing windows with improved security measures. These may include:
  • Locks – there are a variety of types of window locks to choose from, including keyed locks, cam-action locks, swivel-action locks, a lag screw and window latches that can be used to increase window security.
  • Window glazing – reinforcing your glass in order to make it impact resistant can reduce the likelihood of the glass breaking.
  • Alarms – having a security alarm that will sound when triggered by suspicious activity is a plus. Look for an alarm service that will call emergency services on your behalf to get the peace of mind that comes with enhanced security. Even if your other home security measures fail with an alarm service you know that help will not be far away.
Windows can provide breathtaking views of the outdoors and allow beautiful natural sunlight to enter your home creating a bright, healthy and warm atmosphere. You shouldn’t have to compromise these luxuries with the right window choices. Consider beauty, but also ensure you look for windows that will also offer you and your family a high degree of security. Interested in installing new or replacement windows in your home? Contact us at Thermo-Bilt where our professional and licensed staff will work hard to meet your needs and ensure a high degree of home security.
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window technology and innovations.

Top 10 Innovations in Window Technology

Windows have come a long way since the days of your parents. Here’s a brief history of the evolution of window technology so you can see how far the technology has come!

Float Glass

Float glass is a method of floating molten glass over a bath of molten tin and by the late 1950s, it was producing flatter and more uniform glass than had ever been created before. It was an integral breakthrough in creating the energy-efficient windows that we have today.

Insulating Glass

It started as two panes of glass welded together at the edges with a 1/4-inch dry air space between them. It was then changed to a ½ inch space for better insulating. By 2007, the number of windows that had insulating glazing jumped to 90 percent.

Vinyl Windows

This refers to the framing material used for the window. Vinyl windows appeared in North America in the early 60s but took another 20 years to become viable in the new construction market. Usage has risen steadily since then. By 2009, roughly 60 percent of window sales were vinyl windows.

Clad Windows

Clad windows were introduced in the 1960s, first as vinyl clad and then a few years later as an aluminium product. They infuse the look of a traditional window on the inside, with a weather-proof exterior that will never need painting. They are extremely popular, with 93 percent of wood window sales being made with either a vinyl or aluminium cladding.

Tilt-In Replacements

The 70s brought us the Marvin Tilt Pac Double Hung Replacement System, which is a cost-effective way to upgrade older double-hung windows that have a frame that’s in good shape but a sash or hardware that needs replacing.

Round Top Windows

This style of window was traditionally made by hand in small shops. In the early 80s, they began to be mass-produced, which changed not only manufacturing processes but also the ideas of modern home design.

Low-E Glass and Gas-Filled IGUs

These windows use a thin layer of transparent metal (a low-e coating) that slows down heat transfer throughout the glass. It reflects the sun’s heat out in summer and reflects the heat back into the home during the winter. By 2005, you could find low-e coatings on roughly 56 percent of windows.

Impact Glass

This style came out of necessity for hurricane and tornado-prone areas. They are designed to keep the wind out, and they have the ability to withstand the hit of a 9 lb., 2 by 4 shot out of a cannon at almost 55 km/h!

Ultrex Frames

The mid-1990s saw the rise of Ultrex frames. They are made of fibreglass and are stronger than vinyl, aluminium or wood. They are also superior when it comes to heat transfer and expand/contract less in temperature changes.

Dynamic Glass

This style gets its name from having dynamic or switchable glass. Electrochromic windows control solar gain via a conductor that is transparent and inserted between the glass panes. It can be gradually darkened or lightened using an electric current. It can also be tinted manually or by an automation system. If you need new windows, there is only place to go. Thermo-Bilt have over 20 years of window replacement and installation experience. Contact us and get a free quote today!
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Windows of The Future & Connected Tech

In our homes, it’s not just the internet, smartphones and TVs that are evolving. Advancements in window tech are on a quick and steady rise. We could soon be living in spaces that would have seemed like something out of a science-fiction movie just a few decades ago. Let’s take a look at where window technology is now, and what our view may look like in the future.

Windows of the Present

Home automation is a term most people have heard of. People are looking towards having their home work for them. Some of the things we already have now are just the beginning of smart home windows. External home monitoring devices can alert a homeowner when a window has become ajar. Motorized window coverings can be controlled from a few feet to thousands of kilometres away with a simple remote app. There are also smart windows being used by some companies that can automatically tint to block sun and heat when it’s too hot and will tint less on overcast days. A lot of money, effort and thought is going into smart home windows and its technology. There is a lot of energy and money that can be saved. Plus, there are all of the benefits associated with natural light.

Window Tech Around the Corner

There are some pretty incredible smart window advancements that are just around the corner. A lot of it has to do with the glass, and it being able to change or adapt to weather conditions with the touch of a screen or remote. Electrochromic windows can change from opaque to transparent in the blink of an eye. So can thermochromic windows, but their change is based on temperature instead of a button. Architects and manufacturers are looking at ways to turn windows into energy creators, as well as storage devices. Companies looking to shrink their carbon footprint are obviously clamouring for this technology to become a reality.

Windows of the Future

The possibilities are limitless when it comes to smart windows. The idea of using windows to collect energy is also being tested and adapted with the use of a solar concentrator. It gets placed over a window to collect solar energy, but at the same time still allows people to look through it. It’s ideas like this that could guide us into a more self-sustaining world. Also, with the rise of touchscreen popularity, expansion into connected glass or “smart glass” is most definitely on the horizon. Using connected glass, we will be able to use a window in our home or office just like it was a giant tablet or smartphone. Windows are the eyes of our homes, and they allow us to see all the splendour of the outside world. Make sure your windows are up to date by buying only the best from Thermo-Bilt. Our large and modern selection combined with our team of experts are the reason we have been respected across the GTA for over 20 years. Get a FREE quote today!
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Casement Window in Toronto

Casement Windows: Everything You Need to Know

The elegant look of vertical casement windows has been in style for centuries, largely because they’re simple and provide a clear view. But these windows have kept up with the times, and are now available in all kinds of materials, finishes and with any pane you like.

Advantages of Casement Windows

Most casement windows are taller than they are wide (but not all styles conform to this guideline). All swing open from one side or the other (sometimes they can be pushed open by a crank) to let in fresh air. You can pair casement windows together to create different looks. French casement windows are two paired together so you can push them both open at the centre, which is a very traditional but luxurious look. Those with larger windows might pair several casement windows together, which gives you the advantage of being able to open one window to let in only a little bit of air. Larger window, on the other hand, would give you less control over a small breeze. Casement windows are available in all materials, like wood, vinyl, aluminium and clad-wood. You can match them to any colour you like, or keep them white for a clean, modern look. In fact, it’s easier to keep a modern look with casement windows as their design allows you to clean the outside of the window while you’re standing in your home. Of course, you’ll also need to remove any dust and debris from the window trim and track to keep your casement window in working order.

Casement Windows as Escapes

Ontario building codes require a certain number of escapes, either doors or windows, in specific rooms and per floor.  To meet these codes many choose casement windows because they easily open at 90 degrees. You can use awning-style casement windows which are wider and a great fire escape for basements and other challenging areas, as long as you’re still meeting the overall area requirements for a fire escape. However, it’s important to note that some casement windows don’t open precisely from the side. Instead, they hinge somewhere near the centre. This most often occurs with windows that have cranks to open. While they can make for a stunning look, these windows may not allow enough room for a regulated fire escape. You’ll need an egress casement window, which opens from the side, to avoid this problem. If you’re trying to meet escape requirements, contact the team at Thermo-Bilt. We can advise you on the proper type and size of windows you need.

When to Consider Casement Windows

While some casement windows can be hard to open, our casement windows at Thermo-Bilt offer effortless opening and closing. Our Greater Toronto Area factory uses an incredible manufacturing process to ensure the smooth operation of these windows. Contact us, if you’re interested in casement windows. We’d be happy to answer your questions and we can provide you with a FREE quote!  
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New windows in Toronto.

10 Signs You Should Invest in New Windows

Here are some unexpected signs that your windows need to be replaced.
  1. There is condensation and/or leaking around the window

Condensation on the inside of your window, or outright water on the floor next to them, signals that the seal on the window has become damaged somehow and water and air from outside are leaking in. If you ignore this problem, eventually the water will cause damage, from water stains to mold and rot, on the walls of your home. It’s best to get new windows right away.
  1. You see decaying, rotting, or mold around the window

Perhaps you can already see the signs of water damage in your home. If so, your new windows may need to be full-frame installed to remove the damaged sill and trim.
  1. You can feel a draft

If you’re not sure where the draft is coming from, holding a lit candle up to each window will help you locate the leak. In this case, installing new windows will help keep your air inside and reduce your energy bills.
  1. You want to reduce your energy bills

Even if you have functioning windows you will see energy savings if you invest in new windows. The latest technological advances, including triple glazing, inert gas filling, and more, have vastly improved modern windows’ insulating properties.
  1. You can hear noise from outside

As window installers, we at Thermo-Bilt have been in a lot of homes that have a high-traffic street just outside of the living room. Few people realize that the right windows can insulate you from sound, whether you’re hearing cars, trains, stores, or the school across the road on recess break.
  1. Your windows get stuck

If you find yourself fighting to get the window open or closed, something has shifted in your home or the window itself to bend it out of shape. Maybe the hinges are damaged, maybe water damage has swollen the sill, or maybe there’s some other problem. We’ll figure out what has gone wrong before we install your new windows.
  1. You live on the coast

In some areas, windows are just exposed to more wear and tear than in others. It’s not just about the storms the coast inevitably throws at your home, salty and humid air does damage all by itself. If you’re living on the coast, you may want to look at your windows from the outside of the home and see if there’s any damage.
  1. Your windows look out of place

Windows can make or break the style of a room, depending on what look you’re going for. Modern looks with old windows will seem cluttered, while historical restorations will need window styles to compliment them— if not, the look will be especially glaring from the outside.
  1. Your furniture or carpets are fading

Old windows don’t offer your furniture protection from UV rays, which can dull colours on any kind of fabric. If you’re developing an odd lightened spot on your carpet, it’s time to get new windows that can protect your home.
  1. Your window looks small

Over time, a succession of retrofit window installations can reduce the actual area of glass in your window, giving your home less natural light and reducing your view. A full-frame installation can restore your windows to their full size. Whatever your concerns with your current windows, at Thermo-Bilt Windows and Doors we’re ready to advise you on how to achieve the results you’re looking for. Contact us for a FREE quote!  
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Window installation workers installing double-glass pane.

Behind the Scenes: How Windows are Installed

Your windows are an important part of your home. They protect you from moisture, wind, and drastic temperatures during the winter and summer. It’s always a good idea to invest in higher quality materials, as improper methods can lead to rotting or drafts. From bay windows to awning, window installation comes in all shapes and forms. With such a wide variety of sizes, styles, and configurations, it’s often a mystery as to how they’re installed. We’re here to show you a behind-the-scenes look at a step by step guide to window installation:

Remove Trim, Casing, & Guide Track

Use a crowbar to remove the window trim and jamb extension (side tracks) from the perimeter of the old window. Then unscrew the window from the jamb and remove it. Go slowly, making sure you don’t break the glass during removal.

Prep/Repair New Window Opening

Once your window has been removed from the wall, check the window jamb for structural damage. If you come across any damage, you may want to call a professional since the jamb will have to be replaced before installing the new window. Now you’ll need to ensure that the rough opening can accommodate the new window installation. The opening should be 1/4” to 3/8” larger than the exterior dimensions of your new window.

Inspect & Replace Window Stop

A window stop is a piece of wood that can be found on the exterior side of the window jamb. Its purpose is to prevent the window from sliding out of the opening, as it physically stops the window from moving. Chances are your original stop will still be usable, but you may need to repair or replace it if it is damaged.

Dry Fit the New Window

The next step is to dry fit the new window into the opening so there are no issues with fit. If you’re struggling to make it work, make adjustments to the rough opening until it fits. If you’ve done it properly, the new window should fit snugly into the opening.

Install New Window

Window installation itself is often very simple once the previous steps are out of the way. First, you’ll need to run a bead of silicone on the inside edge of the window stop, then slide the window into place. Use a level on the top of the window then use cedar shims between the frame and jamb to get it level. Once it’s sitting right, there are two screws that go into each side of the window, then another one near the top and the last near the bottom.

Mount Trim Molding, Add Finishing Touches, Then Paint or Stain

You’re almost there! Now it’s time to pick a molding that suits your decor, then create a frame around the window. Measure the length of each piece, then cut the trim to the appropriate length. Using 45-degree angles cuts will ensure that your trim will fit together nicely, giving off that picture-frame look. Finally, attach the trim to the wall with finish nails. Fill any nail holes with wood putty, then paint or stain the trim any way you desire. Done! New windows have been replaced in your home. If your looking for professional window installation, look no further than Thermo-Bilt Windows & Doors. Contact us for high-quality windows that will leave your home looking brand new.
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Ontario Green Rebate: Everything You Need to Know

The Ontario Green Rebate is a new rebate program that was recently announced by the Ontario government in 2018. It will be run through a provincial agency called the Green Ontario Fund. The rebate is aimed at residential homeowners who are interested in making green choices for their home. Homeowners can claim a variety of rebates through this program, including:
  • Up to $7,200 for new insulation
  • Up to $20,000 for installing an ENERGY STAR certified ground source heat pump (home geothermal) or up to $4,500 for repairing an existing heat pump
  • Up to $5,800 off air source heat pumps that are ENERGY STAR certified or meet program requirements
  • Up to $5,000 for replacement windows that meet program standards
  • $100 for air sealing your home.
This new rebate program comes after an August commitment to provide thousands of free smart thermostats to homeowners, a promise that the environment minister acknowledged. This has rolled out more slowly than the government would have liked. Only 1,000 of the devices have been installed to date.

Who is Eligible to Receive The Rebates?

To be eligible for the rebates, you must be an Ontario resident who lives in a detached home, townhouse or semi-detached home. If you rent, you must have the written permission of your landlord to receive the rebate. The major part of this program is that the renovations done to your home need to be done by contractors who meet the proper criteria, which includes:
  • They must have an HST registration number and either a Master Business Licence or Articles of Incorporation valid for at least two years.
  • $2 million dollars in liability insurance.
  • $1 million dollars in auto insurance.
  • A letter of clearance from WSIB.
To find out more about this program, if your contractor is qualified, and if you’re eligible to receive these rebates, visit GreenOn.ca.

The Rebate that Keeps on Giving

Getting a rebate will help homeowners fund their next home renovation project. This is a great benefit of the program, but there are other reasons to get involved in the new Ontario Green Rebate. You’ll also be able to:
  • Reduce your heating and cooling costs.
  • Decrease your carbon footprint.
  • Increase your home’s resale value by upgrading to high-performance windows.
  • Upgrading your insulation can help you save 15 percent on heating and cooling costs.

The Green Ontario Fund & Ontario’s Pledge to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The Green Ontario Fund is a not-for-profit provincial agency that invests proceeds from Ontario’s carbon market into climate change actions to help people and businesses reduce greenhouse gas emissions and use cleaner technology when powering their homes and workplaces. Ontario has pledged to cut greenhouse gas pollution to 15 percent by 2020, 37 percent by 2030 and 80 percent by 2050. The Ontario Green Rebate is a key part of the province’s Climate Change Action Plan and will help the province meet these targets. This not-for-profit agency takes consumer protection very seriously, which means that their agents will never come to your door without consent. To claim your rebate, you also need to ensure your contractor is qualified and screened, and they have signed up with GreenON.ca – check before you begin your project.
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