Install Question for Possible Wood Rot & Carpenter Ants

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JCCLG
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2024 2:20 pm

Install Question for Possible Wood Rot & Carpenter Ants

#1 Post by JCCLG »

Hello Pros. I am seeking some advice on what would be the best installation method for new windows on the rear of our house that has a northeast exposure and is mainly in the shade. It seems likely that we might have some carpenter ant damage because ants came out of the upper floor window this past fall while spraying the house with water. We have hired an exterminating company and hope to get this taken care of ASAP. We have older siding in the back of our 25 year old home and I recently found out that it is discontinued. Getting new siding at this time is not in our budget. We have a few pieces of extra siding from hail damage repair we had a few years ago, but it is limited.

We are in the Indianapolis area and are looking to get mid-priced windows. I would like to get windows that are structurally sound, but I am not particularly concerned about the thermal properties since our utility bills are fairly low and we are considering selling and downsizing in 3-5 years. We currently have double hung windows, but are considering single hung replacements in the back to save some money because we do not use the double hung tilt feature (we hire someone to clean the windows from the outside). Also of note is that we almost never open the windows due to severe allergies.

The front of our house gets the extreme weather and we replaced those windows 8 years ago with Simonton 5500 with Supercept spacer, double strength glass, and selected features to get a low SPHG since the sun beats down on the front of the house. I have only read bad reviews on Simonton since they were bought-out and have difficulty finding anyone to install this brand in this area. So we are looking for a different brand of window with different features suited to the rear of our home.

My main concern is getting a proper install as I am worried about the possibility of carpenter ant damage. I would be open to putting some kind of trim around the windows. We have cedar trim under the second story overhang and other parts of the house as well and could possibly do that around the windows if needed. I would really appreciate some guidance regarding installation method in the rear area of our home, and if anyone has recommendations on window brands/ specs for this side of the home that would be great also.

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TheWindowNerd
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Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 3:05 pm
Location: SE PA & NJ; DFW/Metroplex

Re: Install Question for Possible Wood Rot & Carpenter Ants

#2 Post by TheWindowNerd »

Interesting this post has 16 views, no replies.
I will make it short and sweet.
Use the less than mid tier 5500. Change the glazing specs if you like. One benefit of this choice is consistency.
Use your previous installer. If not available ID 2 Simonton distributors and ask the managers who they suggest for installers. Then ask them why?
Make the installers aware of your ant concern. It will need to be a contingency item in your contract.
theWindowNerd

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Windows on Washington
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Location: DC Metropolitan Area-Maryland/Virginia/DC

Re: Install Question for Possible Wood Rot & Carpenter Ants

#3 Post by Windows on Washington »

I would also look for someone to install the same window. I am not a fan of mixing brands on a single house unless the first brand was a complete dumpster fire type brand. Simonton does not fit that description as it is a decent, mid-tier window. Have you reached out to corporate to see who is a good installer in your region?

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HomeSealed
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Joined: Mon Feb 15, 2010 3:46 pm
Location: Milwaukee, Madison, SE Wisconsin

Re: Install Question for Possible Wood Rot & Carpenter Ants

#4 Post by HomeSealed »

I'd agree with the other pros. This industry is full of shysters and hacks, so if you had a decent experience last time, I'd go back to that same well unless you are looking for a higher level of performance (and the accompanying price).

Regarding the ants, it's hard to say without having eyes on it, but full frame installs would afford you the opportunity to inspect and repair any damage to the surrounding area.

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TheWindowNerd
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Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 3:05 pm
Location: SE PA & NJ; DFW/Metroplex

Re: Install Question for Possible Wood Rot & Carpenter Ants

#5 Post by TheWindowNerd »

Though an extreme example, I once was removing a large egg crate window, Carpenter ants starting pouring out. I had to reframe the whole wall. That has only happened once in my 46 years installing. I started when I was 2.
theWindowNerd

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