What Homeowners Need To Know
About Window Replacement Options…
The 3 most common window types are Wood, Fiberglass, or Vinyl. Each has its strengths and weaknesses. Here is a quick guide to each type:
Wood, the traditional window frame material, is attractive and versatile; you can paint or stain it, and wood styles are generally more likely to complement the look of older homes. Wood frames require more maintenance than frames made from other materials, however, and if they are not properly maintained and sealed, they can deteriorate over time. Some wood frames are clad in aluminum or vinyl to increase their durability. This cladding can fail over time leaving the wood exposed to the elements and allowing rot to set in.
Bottom line: Beautiful interiors, but drawbacks on maintenance, durability, and cost.
Fiberglass window frames have some distinct advantages over both wood and vinyl frames. They are more dimensionally stable than wood, so they are less likely to deteriorate as they get older. They can be painted, making them more adaptable and potentially more attractive than vinyl. Fiberglass windows are typically billed as “strong.” This is true – fiberglass is a strong material. The only issue with the claim is this type of strength does not really add more value to the window or make it more durable. Many times the higher costs of fiberglass windows are justified by saying it is stronger.
Bottom Line: Fiberglass is a quality choice, but too expensive for what you get.
Vinyl frames are made from polyvinyl chloride. PVC is susceptible to damage from sunlight, so modern vinyl frames contain a component that resists ultraviolet rays so that they can withstand exposure to the elements. The quality of the PVC is the key when selection a vinyl window source. Some companies utilize reclaimed PVC as a filler to lower the cost of the product. Get the facts about the contractor and manufacturer you are selecting for your vinyl windows… otherwise that “bargain” will turn into a nightmare when the windows fail in just a few years. Vinyl is also VERY LOW maintenance, maintains its appearance, and is available with a Lifetime Warranty. Aeris vinyl windows are available with real wood interiors that provide the beauty of wood with the durability of vinyl.
Bottom Line: Vinyl is an excellent choice – low maintenance, reasonably priced, and available with beautiful interiors. Just make sure you do your due diligence and make a quality choice.