January 2021
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The L'Enfant Trust Logo Preserving Washington's Historic Communities


Even during a mild winter with little or no snow, windows rattle and occupants worry about cold drafts and the overall efficiency of their windows.
Many homeowners erroneously believe that, for maximum efficiency, their historic windows must be replaced with new, double-paned replacements. However, the restoration of the original windows is possible far more often than not, and paired with storm windows, they guard perfectly well against the elements! 

The rehabilitation of 1518 W Street, SE included restoration of four original windows still in the house, which were then fitted with custom storm windows.

The labor and expertise of the window restoration was generously donated by The Phoenix Restoration Group, Inc. and show that even the most dilapidated, broken windows can be brought back to their former glory.

The sleek custom storm windows were generously donated by Allied Window, Inc. and show how far storms have come from the clunky iterations that have many people shuddering at their mention.  

We are so grateful for their support and for enabling us to demonstrate what is possible. Thank you, Phoenix Restoration Group and Allied Window!
Beyond the efficiency being comparable in old vs. new windows, the environmental benefits of retaining the embodied energy and durability of old-growth hardwood that is literally irreplaceable, and the designed lifecycle of windows built for routine maintenance instead of routine replacement cannot be overstated. Additionally, employing local craftspeople to make repairs keeps the economic impact of household upkeep recirculating within your own community.

The Trust will certainly work with homeowners to approve appropriate replacement windows, but we urge all stewards of historic homes to first seriously consider restoration, and to consult the many resources on the topic before making a final decision.

The Windows Bulletin on our website outlines the considerations that are important to keep in mind for window projects, and will give easemented property owners a good understanding of what we are looking for in proposals. Additionally, there are several links to useful outside articles on the subject.
The L'Enfant Trust depends on local support for the success of our programs. Donations, no matter how small, help the Trust continue to protect DC's shared cultural resources and create a strong sense of community and quality of life for all DC residents - even more important now during these uncertain times.

Please consider making a donation to the Trust.
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