When it comes to window frames, they’re a lot more significant than you may think. Window frames exist not just for aesthetics, but to provide your window’s structural support as well. They also make a big difference in the overall energy efficiency of your home. Windows that are improperly installed or poorly constructed can lead to major issues such as higher utility costs, and even expensive damage to your home and belongings.
When it’s time to upgrade your windows, it’s important to choose your new windows carefully, but how do you know which window frames are right for your home?
Types of Window Frame Material Available
Window frames are composed of multiple different materials, but the five most common materials are aluminum, composite, vinyl, wood, and fiberglass. Each material has positive and negative aspects to consider.
Metal window frames are lightweight, strong, and require very little maintenance making them really easy to keep them looking great. Aluminum frames are also an affordable choice, but they’re not the best choice when it comes to insulation because metal conducts heat rapidly. Therefore, if energy efficiency is important to you, then aluminum frames likely aren’t the best option for your new window frames.
Composite is a mixture of wood particles and plastic. While wood alone isn’t as durable as composite, the plastic additive is what gives this material more durability. While wood frames require regular maintenance, with composite, you get the look of natural wood without all of the work. In terms of energy efficiency, composite is equal to vinyl. Composite can be costly as you’re paying for the look of natural wood but without the required maintenance.
Vinyl is one of the most popular material choices for a new window. Vinyl offers a great balance of affordability, durability, and efficiency. Vinyl is composed of UV-resistant PVC, so there’s no need to paint or sand them like other materials. Vinyl window frames are also more weather resistant and can handle temperature shifts better than some of the other window materials out there. Vinyl is a bit more limited when it comes to color choices though.
One of the best aspects of wood frames is the beauty they provide. Wood frames are easy to match to nearly any architectural style and can be painted to match any color scheme. They’re also an effective choice when it comes to energy efficiency. The downside to wood frames is the maintenance, as wood frames are prone to wood rot and surface splintering. These frames are also more expensive than other options, such as vinyl.
Fiberglass frames offer amazing quality, especially in terms of durability, insulation, and thermal performance, while still being easy to maintain. Fiberglass frames are more expensive but have many great benefits that are worth the extra expense for many homeowners installing replacement windows.
How to Select a Window Material?
When it comes to selecting window frames for your new window installation, how do you know which material to choose?
While aesthetics are important, you’ll want to consider these important factors to ensure you’re making the best choice to fit your needs.
How long will the material last?
How will the material affect resale value?
How will the material perform in your specific climate?
What is required in terms of maintenance or upkeep?
Hire the Right Window Company
The most important part of a new window installation is hiring the right window professional to perform the job. Find a local, reputable company you can trust, like Armorvue Home Exteriors. We’ve been installing high quality windows in this community for decades and we’d love to talk with you about getting new windows installed in your home. Contact us today for a virtual appointment.