Smart Home Updates

House before adding entry arbor and replacing windows and shutters.
House before adding entry arbor and replacing windows and shutters.

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Ken and Stacie Frahm loved the location and interior of the house they purchased in Pensacola, Florida; but the front of the house lacked curb appeal, and the 50-year-old windows needed replacing.

Window and Shutter Replacement

The first step in our exterior makeover was to remove the old single-pane, metal windows and replace them with low maintenance, double pane, vinyl replacement windows from Window World. The new windows are not only much more energy efficient than the old ones, but they also reduce outside noise.

Installing replacement windows.
Installing replacement windows.

In addition to the insulated glass, the windows have a Low-E coating that makes them even more energy efficient. The coating reduces solar heat gain by over 50% and blocks 97% of UV rays to protect fabrics and furniture from fading.

Window World replacement windows come with an all inclusive, lifetime warranty that covers both labor and materials on the vinyl frame, glass, and hardware of the replacement windows.

Since the house is located near the coast, building codes require storm protection from wind damage to windows if more than 25% of a home’s windows are replaced.

To satisfy this requirement, plywood was cut to size and stored for use during a hurricane for the smaller windows, and threaded studs were installed around the larger windows to attach fabric storm panels in case severe weather strikes.

Read Hurricane Storm Panels and Fabric Storm Panels to find out more.

The dated wood shutters on the house were also removed and replaced with low maintenance, vinyl shutters from Window World.

Replacement windows and shutters installed.
Replacement windows and shutters installed.

Entry Door Arbor

To improve the curb appeal of the house, the existing railings on the front steps were removed, and the concrete steps and walk were cleaned using a pressure washer.

Next, a wood arbor was constructed from select grade, pressure treated pine from YellaWood. Flood CWF-UV stain in a redwood tint was applied to the wood before the arbor was assembled to protect it from moisture and UV rays as well as to give a finished appearance to the wood.

Completed entry door arbor.
Completed entry door arbor.

A masonry bit was used to drill holes in the brick wall above the door for lead anchors. The 2×6 ledger board for the arbor was then attached to the wall using lag bolts, with construction adhesive and epoxy glue applied for added security.

The sides and front of the arbor frame were then attached to the ledger board with decking screws.

To support the arbor, pressure treated columns from YellaWood were cut to length and secured to the concrete stoop using metal brackets and lead anchors coated with epoxy glue.

Mitered 1” boards were installed around the base and top of each column to give a finished look.

The ends of the 2×6 lumber for the arbor were cut at an angle and installed on top of the frame. Pressure treated wood was also used for the newel posts and railings on the sides of the stoop and down the steps.

Watch our video on How to Build a Backyard Arbor Swing to find out more.

House after adding wood entry and replacing windows and shutters.
House after adding wood entry and replacing windows and shutters.

Adding the entry door arbor and replacing the windows and shutters really improved the look of the front of the house, and the insulated windows will also make a big difference in the noise level and utility bills for heating and cooling the house.

Paint can screwed to wall with cords and hoses draped over it.

Simple Solutions with Joe Truini:
Paint Can Storage Solution

To keep extension cords and hoses neatly stored in a workshop, screw an empty paint can to the wall and drape the coiled cords over it. The inside of the can is great for holding small tools or caulking tubes. For even more storage space, attach a five-gallon bucket to the wall instead. (Watch Video)

HDX 10-in-1 Plumbing Multi-Tool

Best New Products with Jodi Marks:
HDX 10-in-1 Plumbing Multi-Tool

The HDX 10-in-1 Multi-Tool folding is perfect to use on plumbing and other home improvement projects around your house. It has a PVC pipe cutter, knife and saw blades, flat and Phillips head screwdrivers, flashlight, and carrying pouch. The HDX Multi-Tool is available at The Home Depot. (Watch Video)

Portable Generac generator

Ask Danny Lipford:
Portable vs. Whole House Generators

In choosing a backup generator for your home, it’s important to consider both price and convenience. While portable generators cost less than whole house generators, they require manual starting, regular refueling, and can pose a safety hazard if not used properly. (Watch Video)


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