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How Much Does it Cost to Repair a Window

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You awaken one night to the sound of a crash and thud. Not knowing if an earthquake has happened or World War III has broken out, you get out of bed to see what is going on. There in your living room is a large tree limb where two of your windows used to be. Because you failed to trim the tree, your home insurance won't cover the damages. You need to fix these windows promptly. What is this kind of repair going to cost you? Let's look at issues related to window repair, including costs.

You Can Fix it Yourself or Call a Glazier?

You have the option of fixing your own window and if it is simple glass pane repair you might be able to handle the job. However, if the frame is also broken, you should think about professional help as there could be a lot of detailed work to do. For the best services, consider a glazier.

What is a Glazier?

Glaziers specialize in windows and glass structures like skylights and commercial display cases. They can perform repairs needed or replace the entire structure. Some glaziers work in the construction industry and install windows for a living. They also do work like storm door glass replacement and glass shower doors.

What Repairs Do You Need?

The cost of your repairs will depend on what needs to be done, and other factors. For instance:

  • What size is the glass pane or panes? Size determines price and this is a good time to opt for safety glass, which will make your home safer in the future.
  • Window frame material - do you have old fashion windows which require special equipment and putty? This is more time consuming than modern window frames made from aluminium or other materials and the price will be higher.
  • Additional problems - suppose your window professional removes the frame and notices wood rot or damage from insects. This can involve extensive repairs as old sash cord type windows have a lot of moving parts and the glazier may need to remove your window, take it to the shop and rebuild it.
  • With old fashion windows you have few options if you wish to keep the same type of windows. For one thing, replacement windows are simply not available. Much of the repair bill may be labour charges.

Do You Need Emergency Repairs?

If you have a broken window and you need repairs now, you should check into glaziers who perform emergency repairs. Some services are available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. In fact, some even work on holidays. However, you will pay quite a bit more for emergency services and there are some disadvantages:

  • You have no time to make price comparisons, because it can be hard to find a glazier in your area offering these kinds of services.
  • A glazier may normally charge about $40 to $80 an hour or so for labour. However, when you need after hours repairs the price could double or even triple. You are paying for the added convenience of service on demand and it is usually very expensive.
  • You may have to pay a service call fee for emergency repairs and this adds to the costs.
  • Most emergency services cannot perform extensive repairs immediately. However, they come to your home and make sure the window area is closed off from the outdoors, until they can come back and finish the job.
  • You may not be able to find a glazier who can service you right away.

Finding a Glazier

Depending on where you live, glaziers may need to be licensed. For example, licensing is a requirement in Queensland, New South Wales and South Australia. You should check with your local regulations to be sure. Check to make sure the glazier you use is properly insured and can provide you with a written estimate of the costs before beginning work. It is also a good idea to check references. Also, ask if he charges to come out and provide in home estimates.

Glass Options

Some people think you have maybe two options for glass, but in reality there are many options to consider. For example:

  • Standard glass - sometimes called sheet glass, you can see a slight green colour especially on the edges.
  • Laminate - this glass has built in fibres or material which keeps it one piece so is does not shatter when broken.
  • Float glass - to make float glass, liquid glass is poured onto molten metal. This creates a clear and transparent glass with even thickness. It is commonly used in standard windows today.
  • Tempered - by using heat or chemical treatment processes, the glass is toughened and when hit, it crumbles instead of shattering (for safety reasons).
  • Low emissions - low-e glass is made to be energy efficient.
  • Double glazed - contains two panes of glass instead of one. By placing air or gas in between the glass panes, insulation is increased.

What Can I Expect to Pay?

For a typical single pane glass replacement the cost can be about $100 total. This includes coming to the home. If you have to call a 24 hour emergency service, they might charge $150 or more to come to your home and make a temporary repair until they can return during working hours and replace your glass at their normal rate. Here are some average glass replacement costs (per square metre):

  • Float glass - around $38
  • Laminate - $300
  • Double glazed - $200
  • Low-e - $220

How Can I Save Money On Glass Repair?

  • Opt for safety or flexible glass if you have standard glass panes. This can help you avoid repairs in the future.
  • If a window breaks, inspect all windows. You may need more than one window repair and it is cheaper to have all them done at the same time.
  • If your broken window is old or seriously damaged it may be cheaper to replace it.

Figures and dollar amounts in this article are only rough estimates. Prices can vary a great deal from one area to another.

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