Home Improvement Projects: Top Home Improvement Projects for Fall

No matter which of these projects is your top priority, Universal Windows Direct, MN is here to help you . Call us today at 612-866-2888 for a free, no obligation estimate.

Fall Home Improvement Projects.   Fall.  Did I just say Fall?

It doesn’t matter if you like it or not, it’s here.    Say goodbye to summer.  Pack up your beach bags and put the sunscreen away.  I will miss the feeling of the hot sun on my face and the spontaneous trips to the beach more than anyone.  BUT…   I also love fall.   What can I say?  I am a Minnesotan through and through.

fall_leavesI love the changing leaves and the cool mornings.  I love anything cooked with apple and pumpkin.   I love sweatshirts with hoods and fall TV and decorating the house for all the holidays.   I love cooking  comfort food.   I love planning family Halloween costumes and starting to think about holiday gift giving.  But enough about me.

For lots of people fall is also the harsh reality that winter is right around the corner.  And every home improvement project that was put off during the lovely summer is now a priority once again.   So I ask you this,  what is your fall home improvement project?

  1. Attic insulation?    Stop letting all that energy escape through your attic.   If you feel like you're put off attic insulation too long already, this is your year.  It will make an amazing difference to the  comfort of your home.
  2. Gutter Topper!   Stop wasting your time cleaning the gutters!  Gutter topper is less expensive that you think and with all the time you save not cleaning your gutters, you can install even more holiday lights!
  3. If you're concerned about your roof – have someone take a look at it.  Replacingpanther with house in hands a bad roof before winter will give you peace of mind against ice dams and water leaks.
  4. Is your front door drafty?  Is the sill rotted away so you have one of those crazy draft stoppers to keep the wind out?  Let’s replace it.  We have a variety of front door styles available  - from the very basic to the very ornate.  We are confident we have the style of door and the price point that will work for your house.  Plus, with our composite threshold, it is guaranteed never to rot so you can throw that draft stopper away once and for all.
  5. Storm windows are a pain.   Replace windows with a double or triple pane glass for a higher energy efficiency rating and eliminate the need for storm windows.   Start with getting the worst windows  replaced now and do the rest in the spring.  100% of homeowners who replace their windows are amazed at what a difference the new ones make.   Rooms are instantly warmer.  The fresh look of the new windows makes the rooms look newer, too.

No matter which of these projects is your top priority, Universal Windows Direct is here to help you .   Call us today for a free, no obligation estimate.   We offer financing programs  for qualified buyers and get your home improvemnts done within 8 weeks.   Don’t delay!  Call Steve The Window Guy at Universal Windows Direct today to get started!  612-866-2888universal windows direct mn

Author:  Melissa Brager, Operations Manager

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Warranty on Windows: Why Warranty Matters on Replacement Windows

This article is a light hearted look at why warranty matters when buying replacement windows

war·ran·ty [n. wawr-uhn-tee]

"a written guarantee given to the purchaser of a new appliance, automobile, or other item by the manufacturer or dealer, usually specifying that the manufacturer will make any repairs or replace defective parts free of charge for a stated period of time.


Not too subtely subtitled “how long the manufacturer expects their product to last”

True story.  I have this friend who starts every day by having 2 pieces of toast. With peanut butter (and coffee, of course). One morning her whole morning was disrupted when she realized that her beloved toaster was no longer working.

So.. off to the store she went. She thought buying a toaster would be easy (aren’t they all the same?) but she quickly realized that there are lots of different options. What would she be toasting? 2 slices, 4 slices, or bagels? What color did she want? White, red, stainless steel? Did she want a reheat button? Confusing!! Should she spend more for a popular name brand? Should she just choose an American made product? Does warranty even matter?

Guess what?? She would be having the EXACT SAME decision process if she was buying windows. Everyone starts out thinking every window is the same. Then they start learning about glass package and construction and operation and options and ratings and pretty soon they get overwhelmed. Sometimes they throw up their hands and spend twice as much on a popular name brand. Sometimes they choose an American made product, and replacement windowsometimes (SOMETIMES) they look at warranty.


Here is the thing. Warranty matters. Every single time on every single product you ever buy. It doesn’t matter how long you shop or how hard the buying decision is for you  -  even how much you spend. Warranty matters. I believe that the bigger the investment, the more the decision should be based on the warranty.

So no surprise that I also believe that when you are looking to make an investment in your home that the warranty of the product should be high on the list of things you look at. Why would you choose to spend more money on a product that you know you will need to replace in 15 or 20 years.

Given the choice  which would you choose? 1) All the options you want, reasonable price, 30 year non pro-rated warranty. 2) All the options you want, up to twice as expensive, 15 year prorated warranty.

Don’t waste your money on a product with a poor warranty.   Get all the options you want, spend an amount of money you are comfortable with and always check the warranty!

Call Steve the Window Guy from Universal Windows Direct and have him show you our exclusive line of windows and doors. He can work with you to determine the options, color and styles that work best with your house. Give him a chance to show you how our warranty is one of the best in the business, and how our factory direct pricing model can save you hundreds of dollars on your next project.

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Universal Windows Direct at Father Hennepin Days 2013

Universal Windows Direct will be participating in the Father Hennepin Days Business Expo June 8, 2013 !

We have done so many Home Shows and Summer Events that we have preparing for them and packing down to a science.   We bring different samples for different size booths, for example.   We bring carpet to an indoor event and lots of bungee cords and weights to outdoor events so our tent doesn't blow away.   When we are done packing the back of the truck is a work of art.  Every single thing is in its place.

But that was before baby.  She is 13 months now so she is at a more "normal" place schedule wise.  This means we can take her with us to more of these summer events.  So Father Hennepin Days is officially moving into a Family Fun Day that won't even feel like work!     We can spend some time in the tent with Steve and then we can explore the rest of the Festival.   I checked the Father Hennepin Days Event Schedule today and in addition to the Business Expo there is a Craft Fair, Carnival Rides, a Petting Zoo and a Skateboard Park...  just to name a few events.  We'll just bombard her senses and then she'll take a huge nap.   Right?   The weather is supposed to be very nice and mild so she might even get to nap in the stroller outside in the fresh air.    I don't know about you, but that sounds divine to me.

That's all for now.   We'll post pictures of the fun tomorrow on our Facebook page.

Oh - PS - If you are in the area we'd love for you to stop by our booth and see Steve the Window Guy!   We'll have samples of windows, siding, doors and roofing, brochures, and even some coupons.

Enjoy your weekend!

Melissa Brager

Universal Windows Direct, MN

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Window screens  prevent mosquitoes from getting in to your home.

Nobody likes mosquitoes.   Even though people in Minnesota sort of joke about them being the "state bird" no one is really proud of that.   This past weekend my brothers and sisters and I spent a day at our parents house doing projects outside and every bugsingle time a mosquito was spotted it was disgust.  Discussed.   Whatever.   Nobody likes mosquitoes.   We were  all slightly horrified that they were buzzing around us on what felt like the first warm day we've had.

I wonder how many people consider screen options as they head down the path of window replacement.  It is easy to focus on quality of window, window ratings, window options and price .... so the screen just gets lumped in as part of the overall project.   I think most people focus on how that new window will perform when it is closed.   Will it keep your home warm enough?  Cool enough?   Will it keep you safe?  Will it drown out the outdoor noise?  Few people consider the performance of the screen on that window when its open.

Screens are just there, right?  Day and night.  365 days a year.  Screens just do their job.  Clinging to your windows like superheroes protecting your home from outdoor junk like sticks and rocks and all sorts of bugs.   But they actually do more than that.

Window screens also allow air flow into the home and depending on the weave, can even offer you a clearer view of the outdoors.    Our patio door screens even offer an pet screen that increases performance of the screen if you have a dog or an energetic cat going after it.

At Universal Windows Direct, MN we offer several different screen options for your replacement windows - including one that offers advanced protection from bugs.   In addition to our proven and reliable standard screen, we offer the following replacement window screen upgrades:

BetterVue Window Screen

  • 10% Better airflow into your home.
  • 10% Clearer view to outside
  • 10% Better protection from bugs

UltraVue Window Screen

  • 25%  Better airflow into your home
  • 25%  Clearer view to outside

Check out this picture that illustrates the differences in the view with the upgraded screen options.   Amazing, right?

So, bring on the mosquitoes because our upgrade screen options can handle it.    Mention you saw this blog post and receive a FREE upgrade to the BetterVue Screen with increased insect protection for the month of June.    Quotes are always free and we have samples of the screen we can show you in your home!

"If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito."   Dalai Lamai XIV

Thanks for reading!

Author:  Melissa Brager, Operations Manager

Universal Windows Direct, Twin Cities

PS:  After re-reading this post I am noticing all the assumptions out theree.   Nobody likes mosquitoes.  Nobody thinks about screens.   Nobody wants bugs in their house.    My apologies if I'm wrong!

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Hello Summer!: Universal Windows Direct MN is excited for Summer!

Bring out the white shoes and fire up the grill..  this weekend is the official start to Summer!  This is always cause for celebration but when you've just survived 7 months of winter and have written off spring entirely, this is even better.

funfestAs a home improvement company summer means no more indoor home shows with sensible shoes and pressed shirts.  Bring out the shorts and the sunglasses because we will be outside in parks, in tents, and even on the side of the road.    Instead of being flanked by window and siding companies we are likely to be flanked by a liquor store, a local gym or a real estate agent.   We say goodbye to packing sensible "home show"  lunches and say hello to packing gallons of water and  enjoying yummy food truck food.  Can you say "deep fried apple pie?" I can.   With a side of cinnamon ice cream, please.   This year we look forward to bringing our baby to these fun summer events so she can enjoy the action and energy of the midway,  and maybe even a few rides or a taste of cotton candy.   And who knows, if she can help us pull in an extra lead or two all the better!

Ask any window replacement company and they will gladly tell you their installers LOVE working in the summer.   Winters get slow and winters get rough and all summer does is get sunny!  Yeah!!

Steve The Window Guy sells more than just windows in MN! Steve The Window Guy sells more than just windows in MN!

When we're not outside work/playing at events we've got new marketing campaigns to work on,  new products to share with you, enhancements to our existing products and a new salesman to introduce to you.

On a personal note we are looking forward to being outside.   I plan on  going to the park, enjoying hot afternoons in the pool, and drinking lemonade with friends and watching some baseball games.  I have always dreamed of having an outdoor living space... totally not practical in MN..  but I do have my outside furniture out and my grill cleaned.   What else?  Burger Friday is Back!    Check our Facebook page every Friday for awesome and yummy burger recipes.   We don't just stick to beef.  You'll see some great chicken, pork, turkey and meat-free burger recipes too.

I. Am. Ready.  How do YOU celebrate the beginning of Summer?

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Universal Windows Direct, Twin Cities works home improvement shows and expos throughout the Minneapolis and St. Paul Metro area.   It doesn't matter if we are in a huge convention hall, driving in a parade, or sitting in a tent at an outdoor event.   We love to display our great product!

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Wave at us in a local parade!



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