Many people are drawn to the windows of a home when making their purchasing decision, choosing a home with plenty of natural light and aesthetic appeal. However, when the time comes to replace them, your windows can be a source of confusion. With so many different materials and styles available, how can you narrow down the pack and find the best windows to suit your needs?
Here is a look at some of the main factors to consider when you are selecting frame materials for replacement windows.
For many homeowners, the appearance of their home is the primary consideration when choosing their frame materials. These days, there are many different materials on the market that can give you the look you desire. It is also possible to customize certain affordable window frame materials to give them the look of higher-end materials.
Homeowners who have a specific color in mind will need to choose one of the window frame materials that can be painted or stained to the shade they desire.
The biggest factor that will determine how much you spend on a window replacement project is the number of windows you need and their size. However, the material of your frame is another important consideration from a price standpoint.
While those working on historical renovations might prioritize matching the home’s original frames as much as possible, those who are simply replacing windows to improve their home’s energy efficiency or resale prospects will look toward value-oriented materials such as vinyl.
While some people enjoy spending time maintaining their home and enhancing its appearance, others wish to steer clear of materials that require a lot of upkeep. Those looking for windows that can hold up well to all types of climates and do not need much maintenance should consider vinyl or fiberglass. Wood windows tend to require significantly more maintenance.
With these crucial factors in mind, here is a look at how some of the most popular window frame materials stack up.
Vinyl is widely considered the most affordable type of window frame, making it an extremely popular choice among budget-conscious homeowners. Although higher-quality vinyl can be very sturdy, lower-quality vinyl tends to come with flimsy weather stripping and plastic parts.
It is also important to keep in mind that windows made of vinyl will contract and expand as temperatures change, which can compromise its sealing ability. Moreover, it is prone to warping when exposed to hot sunlight, making it a poor choice for extremely hot climates.
When it comes to aesthetics, vinyl is available in a range of colors and styles to suit various tastes but does not always go well with historic or wooden homes. However, it resists fading and is virtually maintenance-free.
Wood is a more expensive window frame option but remains a popular choice for people with historic homes. Prices vary depending on the species of wood, window style and manufacturer. It has natural insulating properties and loads of aesthetic appeal. Moreover, you can easily change the look of wood windows by staining or painting them.
However, it does need to be sealed with finish or paint from time to time to prevent sun damage and rotting. Nevertheless, with proper maintenance, homeowners can expect wood windows to last for more than 50 years.
In the past, aluminum was not considered a good material for window frames because it conducts heat. However, newer models have a thermal break that stops heat transference and improves energy efficiency. It is a strong, lightweight and attractive option that is very easy to maintain, and the frames are easy to clean and very resistant. However, this material is not as energy-efficient as other options.
The most energy-efficient and strongest window frame material is fiberglass, which is made up of glass fibers that have been mixed with resin and additives. Although it is low-maintenance, weather-resistant and moisture-resistant, it comes in limited color and design options and is more difficult to find in some areas.
One popular option is wood clad window frames, which are made using a wooden frame and sash that has a thin layer of aluminum wrapped around its exterior frame to protect the wood from the elements while giving homeowners a wood interior that they can stain or paint as desired. It is sold by many top brands in a range of cladding options so homeowners can get the look they want, although its price is on the higher end.
Discuss Your Window Replacement Project with Adelphia Exteriors
When choosing replacement windows, frame material is just one of many factors to keep in mind. If you are considering a window replacement project, reach out to the Northern Virginia window replacement specialists or call us at (571) 351-1685 at Adelphia Exteriors for guidance on the right windows to suit your needs and to learn more about our services.