Cianci Construction

Design Ideas

Window and Door Replacement - Impact vs. Standard

Many South Florida owners are replacing their old exterior windows and doors with new impact resistant glass and frames. Impact windows and door offer many benefits to standard non-impact rated. They include the following:

Cost - These new impact rated windows and doors on average cost 1.5x to 2x more than non-impact rated windows and doors but are almost the same cost when compared to the cost of installing an alternate hurricane protection device on the same opening such as storm shutters. In many cases non-impact windows and doors installed with roll-up shutters are more expensive. Additionally, the cost of time to install the hurricane shutter and the other benefits below that come with impact glass seem to outweigh the negatives of costs in the long run.

Laymen Terms:   costs more initially but headache of shutter installation and energy, noise reduction outweigh cost.


Security - Impact rated window and doors are very effective in preventing break-ins due to the PVB layer between the two layers of glass. In fact, it is very difficult to break through without proper equipment such as the fire department.

Laymen Terms:   greater security benefits, hard to break in


Appearance - Impact glass windows and doors come in various shapes and sizes to both accommodate new and existing construction installations.  They are available in single hung, casement, double hung, sliding, hinged, and fixed.

Frames colors - typically available in white and black/bronze, depending on manufacturer other custom colors may be available

Glass Tint - There are glass color tint options available, such as: grey and bronze with none to minimal upgrade costs and blue and green with more expensive upgrade costs.

Frame Materials - frames are available in wood, aluminum, vinyl, composite, and combinations of these materials. Typically in Florida we have seen and would recommend both aluminum for low to mid-range homes and wood for estate homes due to the availability of the styles and types available and costs.

Laymen Terms:   many choices, colors, costs available


Insurance Premium Discounts - Impact windows and doors are an effective hurricane protection system that is recognized by the insurance industry and the insurance companies will usually provide a discount based upon having these installed.


According to Florida Statue 627.0629 all insurance companies that provide homeowner’s insurance to Florida residents must offer some type of discount for dwellings that have an “effective” windstorm protection system installed. Each insurance company discounts and requirements vary so check prior to purchasing.

Laymen Terms:   insurance companies give better rates to homes with impact resistant glass and opening protection throughout.


Note: this discount is usually based upon an inspection of the residence and is potentially considered only if ALL of the openings are protected. Most homeowners don’t realize this includes the garage door, side service door, and front door in addition to all other exterior doors and windows. The weakest and most vulnerable is the garage door due to its size.

UV Protection - Laminated glass blocks approximately 99% of (UV) ultraviolet lighting. This prevents damage to interior drapes, blinds and other valuables located near these openings.

Laymen Terms:   furniture and artwork does not fade as fast.

Noise reduction - Impact glass windows and doors also reduce the sound transmitted due to the layers of glass on each side and polyvinyl butaryl (PVB) between the layers of glass, offering a much higher insulating rating thus reducing the noise compared to standard single-pane glass. Note: Laminated impact glass typically does not have a higher rating than insulating glass as the air space between the glass layers is the main sound deadening factor increasing the noise reduction.

Laymen terms: two pieces of glass with plastic between them reduces noise.

Note: PVB is the most common laminate interlayer procedure due to its impact absorption capabilities.

Energy Efficiency - impact glass windows are more efficient in preventing heat gain / loss than standard single pain glass windows and doors and as a result reduce energy costs. Additionally, many older window installations and assemblies such as jalousie windows and awning windows have air gaps which leak air conditioning / heat directly adding to the loss of energy and therefore causing additional air conditioning costs.

Laymen terms: Impact glass windows are more energy efficient than single pane glass

For additional information about impact resistant windows and doors goto Read More

Kitchen - Design

When completing a kitchen renovation you should Pre-plan the project as much as possible. The layout, schedule, material purchases / availability, cost analysis are the key to a successful on budget completion.

The kitchen, in comparison to other rooms, typically involves more coordination due to locations of built-in elements with rough-in requirements. All building systems; mechanical, electrical, plumbing, are involved with minimal tolerances due to typical installation requirements.


Consider some of the following before starting the project:

  1. Location, Location, Location
    a. Room (Location)

i. Location of the room in the home

ii. Location of the room near service or delivery

iii. Location of the room for views and sitting

  1. Appliance (Location)

i.    Horizontally - where are the appliances located in the room or horizontal position

ii.    Vertically - what are the heights of the appliance from the floor or counter or the vertical position. Many times this is an overlooked position that relates to conformity or standard. While standards are great for a spec home when building your dream the heights should be considered. Are you and your family tall? Do you have little kids that will need to use the appliance such as the microwave?
iii.    Proximity - the location of the appliances, counters, storage to each other and collectively in the room. This is sometimes known as the “work triangle” but I would rather call it the work distances as triangles are not always applicable or desirable as a design feature as the shape could be square or round if you have more stop points say in a Kosher kitchen.
Suggestion: layout room on floor and specifications for selected appliance to check locations and heights using cardboard or roll of paper cut-out sizes and place at locations on plans. It is much easier to change before everything is installed.

Below  questions should be viewed as start to your project and should be modified and adjusted according to your individual needs and functioning as this is the “heart” of most homes and has been, in recent times the place where the family gets together or bumps into each other more than anywhere else in the home in all size homes from cottages to estates.

  1. How will the kitchen typically be used?

    1. For serious meal preparation?
    2. For quick meal preparation?
  2. Will you eat most family meals here?
  3. Do you need a breakfast counter with stools?
  4. Which type of work area do you prefer – an island or peninsula? 
  5. What type of typical kitchen layout do you like?
    1. Galley
    2. L-shape
    3. U-Shaped
    4. Open
  6. What are the types of appliances you want and where? (See Appliances)
    1. Refrigerator
    2. Dishwasher
    3. Oven / microwave
    4. Double oven
    5. Cook-top
    6. Warming drawer
  7. What materials do you want the _______ to be?
  8. Countertop
  9. Backsplash
  10. Flooring
  11. Plumbing Fixtures
    1. Sinks
    2. Faucet
  12. Do you want a desk in or near the kitchen?
  13. Do you want a walk-in pantry?
  14. Ceiling height?
  15. Other kitchen requirements?

Notes: See Better Homes and Gardens for great additional tips


State of Florida DBPR

Why Hire a Licensed Contractor instead of a Handyman?

Who is a Handyman?

A Handyman is: 
A semi-skilled person who works under the direction of an owner. 
A person that can perform minor repairs, painting, cleaning.
The State of Florida does not issue a license for a Handyman. 
A Handyman may not perform construction work and if he/she does is in violation of Florida
license requirements and could be fined and / or go to
A Handyman is NOT insured