Did you know?

Save Energy Co. takes the old aluminum windows and screens and breaks them down so the aluminum can be recycled?
Last year we recycled over 19,780 lbs. – that’s almost 10 TONS!
Just another way we help save the planet.
Happy Earth Day!
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If it’s a window or a door…

Our experts know more! We have been providing the Bay Area with superior custom windows and doors for more than 31 years.


We’re window installation pros.

We have the tools and know-how to professionally install new windows in your home. When it comes to getting the best window installation services, you can bet that our experienced installers will get the job done in a timely and satisfactory manner. 


Save Energy Co.

If you’re looking for custom windows and doors for your home, call (415) 824-6010 today!


Another Five-Star Review:

“Apart from the great experience with this company, the windows themselves are amazing. They are Simonton windows and apparently have a lifetime guarantee (!!). They stay cool all day, and now we can leave them open to let in fresh air in the mornings and the evenings.”

(Excerpt from recent yelp.com review.)


Why Is It So Difficult to Find A Good Contractor?

Why is it so difficult to find a good contractor?

When you are finally ready to remodel your kitchen, put on a deck, replace your windows or siding, or whatever your home improvement needs might be, the hard part is always finding the right contractor to do the job.  Of course personal referrals are still the best, but not always.  The person that supplied you with the referral may have loved working with their contractor but they may have different personalities than you and you might find that while the contractor’s work is great, you just don’t get along with them personally.  That may not be a big concern if you are doing a job that takes only a few days or a week, but you may not want to hire him or her if you are doing something longer like a kitchen remodel or an addition.  The best thing to do is to interview them as you are getting an estimate from them.  Honestly, you can probably tell fairly quickly if you are going to mesh or not but, just in case, do some further research as well using third party sources.  In the San Francisco Bay Area we are lucky to have Diamond Certified in addition to Yelp and Angie’s List to help cross reference and vet your contractor.  Also check with the State Contractor’s License Board, your local BBB and any community chat rooms you have in your area.  Picking the right materials is important but even the best material will be wasted (along with your hard earned money) if they are not installed correctly.  Look beyond the sales pitch, it can save you a lot of heartache in the long run.


West Side Stories

West Side Stories

Five months ago in November I finally made it over to West Side Stories (WSS) here in Petaluma for their third anniversary show.  According to their website “WSS believes that everyone has a story” and there goal is “to give those stories a forum.”  It’s basically a room full of people and as many of those people who would like to tell a story that evening put their names in a hat and the master of ceremonies, Dave Pokony, pulls ten names out of the hat and those ten people get to tell their story on whatever the theme is that evening.  Last night the theme was “Unforgiven” and whatever that means to the storyteller their story will reflect that theme somehow.  Needless to say some people can stretch the boundaries of each theme on any given night but the general feeling I witnessed so far is the audience is pretty forgiving themselves as long as the story is a good one.  For basically just a local open mic night I have been pleasantly surprised by the level of storytelling to date.  Last night was my fifth visit, third month in a row I have presented a story and I have to say I am hooked on the whole experience.

I will freely admit I was pretty darn scared before presenting my first two times but miraculously each time I was the very first name picked so I had less time to sit there fretting and could enjoy the other nine stories knowing that mine was behind me.  Last night I was the eighth name picked (there were 11 people vying for the 10 spots so I lucked out) and I admit it was much easier to really listen to the last two speakers than it was to the seven before me.  So far the audience has been very generous to my stories and I have received nice feedback at the end of each one.  I’m not exactly sure where this is all heading but I just knew that it was time for me to do something more creative in my life and this presented itself as a good start.

So if you haven’t checked it out I would encourage you to do so.  The shows are held the first Wednesday of each month and the next one is April 2nd with the theme “Nobody’s Fool.”  Here is a link to their website, see you there!  http://www.westsidestoriespetaluma.com/


Sorry, We’re Closed

“Sorry, We’re Closed”

We’ve all had the experience at one time or another. We are trying to get to the bank, the grocery store or the dry cleaners and as we walk up we see the closed sign in the window. You think to yourself, “darn it, missed it by just a few minutes or even seconds. I wish I had gotten here sooner.” But wait, there is someone still inside and you knock on the door and put on your best puppy dog face and hope that they let you in but they only shrug and mouth “we’re closed.” Really? Can’t you just let me in, it’s only a minute after? But no, they shake their heads sympathetically but do not budge.

This most recently happened to me when I went to a local coffee shop just after it closed. In this case I realize that the machine was shut down and there really wasn’t anything they could do to help but the disappointment was still palatable for me as I walked away. I bring this up because a week ago we had three nights in a row at work here when clients and/or potential clients would keep showing up at our front door after we were closed. Of course we let them in and I must hand it to our office staff for going the extra mile and showing them around the showroom and answering their questions. Last Friday night stands out in particular because it was Valentine’s Day and Bridget had plans for the evening when a couple came and knocked on the door while she was packing to go home. She opened up and spent and additional 25 – 30 minutes with them until they understood the differences between the two different window series we had quoted and they went on their way thankful for the opportunity Bridget offered by staying late. I want to thank Bridget for her dedication to our work. She knows and understands that we are a service industry and we are here to help people in whatever way we can, and if it’s after hours and we’re still in the office when you walk up you will never hear us say “sorry, we’re closed.”

By John Gorman, Owner
Save Energy Company


Doing the Right Thing

Doing the Right Thing

I was out in the field almost all day Friday and when I returned I noticed that our weekly shipment of windows had arrived in my absence.  When I went to make sure everything came in correctly and was ready to be installed the following week, I noticed that one of the orders had the wrong installation flange on them.  This was not good news.  I went inside to check the paperwork and sure enough I had ordered them incorrectly.  What to do?

My first reaction of course was to figure out how to “make them work.”  The crew had just returned and I explained the situation to them and then we pulled up the pictures of the job to see if we could make the incorrect flanges work and it turned out we could, but was it the right way to go?  I called the window manufacturer and asked if they could resend the right frames and we could switch out the glass we had here and they said no, we’d have to order seven brand new windows costing us nearly a thousand dollars in the process.  Additionally, we would possibly have a hole in the calendar for the crew next week, which meant additional lost revenue.

At that moment I was glad that my business partner, Patricia, wasn’t there to witness this because she is keenly aware of how difficult it is to make money in this business and a loss like this could mean the difference between a profit or a loss for the month of February.  Again, what to do?  We could put the windows in and the chances were that the client would never know the difference, but I would and my crew and office staff would.  What kind of example was I setting?  I picked up the phone and called the manufacturer and asked them to please remake the windows to the proper specifications and hung up the phone.  It was a difficult decision to make but it was the right one, and I feel good about it.  The incorrectly ordered windows will be donated to Habitat for Humanity for their use in building affordable homes for those in need.

Patricia and I have always tried to run our company to the highest standards and those standards are simply based on the Golden Rule; “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”  If I ordered something to be installed in my home, I wouldn’t want the company to pull a switch on me after I had ordered them and so it stood to reason that we couldn’t do that here either.  It was a painful lesson and hopefully one I won’t repeat again anytime soon, but if I do, I know what I would do.  I’d do the right thing because, well, because it’s the right thing to do.

John Gorman
President
Save Energy Company


Constant Self-Improvement

Constant Self-Improvement:

One of the core principals that guide our company is the idea of continuous improvement.  It would be very unwise of us to think we have it all figured out and can simply keep doing what we have always done or are currently doing and the company will continue to keep rolling along without incident.  The past five to six years have taught us once again that we have to be nimble enough to see changes coming and adjust.  We certainly never could have lasted these past thirty one years if we weren’t constantly improving and changing.  If you look at our history, you’ll see that we have been continually reinventing ourselves.  We started as an insulation contractor, then adding windows, energy efficient lighting products and services, started a mail order catalog company of fun and energy efficient product, and then narrowed our focus to only doing windows and doors for our neighbors here in San Francisco, Marin and Sonoma counties.  The only thing we have not changed is our goal of being the very best contractor we can be, and to do the right thing for our clients and community.

Last night I returned home from the Certified Contractors Network’s (CCN) Winter Conference held in Orlando Florida.  CCN is a national organization that helps contractors like ourselves learn all the very best practices that are available to them.  Needless to say they attract the very best of the best and it has been our privilege to have been a member these last nine years.  They have helped us concentrate on setting up systems to help us run our company smoother and to better serve our clients.  Probably the biggest benefit aside from all the talented speakers and trainers they bring in is the opportunity to network with other company owners and learn what great things they are doing in their part of the country and then take that back and implement them in our own company.

CCN holds three conferences a year and their winter conference is their year-end awards banquet.  It is truly inspiring to see and hear how others have overcome whatever obstacles they had in their businesses to climb to the very top of the industry.  I have returned rested, inspired and ready to go back to work tomorrow morning with renewed focus and intensity, and I hope to make a difference in the lives of our employees and clients.

John Gorman

President