How to Measure for Replacement Windows in New Jersey & New York?

window measuring new jersey new york

If you have exceptional carpentry skills, and access to all the tools and equipment you need, you may be considering installing replacement windows in your New Jersey or New York Metro home yourself. Even if you’re planning to hire a contractor to do the job, you may want to know how to measure for replacement windows to ensure you get the right sized windows.

Because of the importance of having your windows built to the exact sizes necessary to ensure optimal performance and then have those windows installed to our exacting specifications, Renewal by Andersen does not sell windows to be installed by homeowners or non-Renewal by Andersen employed contractors.

We always recommend you hire a professional to tackle the job because more goes into the project than many people realize. And, if the custom-built replacement windows don’t fit perfectly, you’re responsible for it as well as having a new one built or for modifying the existing opening to make it fit (which defeats the purpose of having a custom window made in the first place). However, there are some basic measurements you should take if you are going to attempt the job on your own.

What to Measure for Replacement Window DIY Projects

First you have to know if you have a 2 X 4 framed wall or a 2 X 6 framed wall. If you have a 2 X 6 framed wall, you probably have a thickness (or jamb depth) that is 6.5 inches, that typically includes the 5.5 inches from the frame, a half inch for interior drywall and a half inch for exterior plywood. Don’t make assumptions on this though, the age of your home, and whether there were any additions make after the home was built could mean different interior and exterior sized materials were used. Some homes built in before the 1950s or 1960s have three-quarter inch shiplap on the outside, and possibly plaster on the inside instead of drywall. This measurement is critical in order for the window supplier to build a window that fits perfectly, or for you to find an off-the-shelf window you know will work as a replacement. If you aren’t sure about the original construction, you can measure from the place where your exterior plywood should start to the place where the backside of your interior trim begins. That should give you a fairly good starting point.

When you’re confident you have an accurate depth measurement, you can head outside to measure the width, including the frame. (You may want to subtract one-eighth inch to give you a bit of wiggle room.) Depending on what type of window you are replacing you may have to cut around the existing window and this will leave a slightly bigger opening than is required when you can simply extract the unit by removing nails and screws. Next measure from the top to bottom, again including the frame.

Making Sure Your Replacement Windows Measure Up To Expectations

The information above is generic, because there are many things that determine exactly where you measure for the width and length, including whether you have wood, aluminum, vinyl or fiberglass frames. Also, you may only want to replace the glazing, which would require you to measure without trim and frame elements.

If you’re considering replacing your home’s windows to boost energy efficiency or eliminate air and moisture leaks for comfort, we recommend you work with a reputable replacement window dealer, like Renewal by Andersen of New Jersey & New York Metro. When you allow the professionals to evaluate your existing windows, and take care of the installation, you eliminate the hassle of figuring out the best way to remove your old windows without having to do major exterior and interior construction. The peace of mind that comes from knowing the whole job – parts and labor – is guaranteed is immeasurable for many homeowners. No construction mess, no worries about getting the wrong size and no fear your windows will fail in a couple of years because they weren’t installed properly.

Another way to make sure your final project measures up to your high expectations is to install superior quality, custom-built replacement windows uniquely designed for every room. The replacement windows offered by big box stores often come in a limited number of styles, like double-hung and sliders. Knowing you can change your existing window style to a different style or shape allows you to really get the look and feel you want for your home. You can’t put a price tag on knowing you can replace your fixed windows with an awning or hopper style windows in the rooms that need a little more ventilation, or reconfigure casement windows to open from the left or right. Improving comfort, bringing in more natural light and loving the way your home looks and feels aren’t as easy to measure as the jamb depth, which is a bit tricky.

Let Renewal by Andersen Help: We Know What to Measure for Replacement Window Satisfaction

Time to upgrade your home windows? Want some help from our professional window replacement team? Just fill in the short form on this page to request a brochure or call back, or reach us immediately by call 1-888-826-2451.


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  • The Difference Between Replacement and New Construction Windows!
  • The Different Kinds of Frame Materials and What That Means to Your Windows’ Performance and Longevity!
  • How the Right Glass Can Save You Money on Your Heating & Cooling Bills!
  • The Critical Role Proper Installation Plays in the Performance, Durability and Warranty of Your New Replacement Windows!
  • What Features and Options are Important to You and What Role They Play in Your Ultimate Satisfaction Today, and for as Long As You Live in Your Home!
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