Common Window Materials for Your Home
Are your windows showing signs of age? Do they have bent or fogged panes, or just won’t open properly? If that is the case, you need replacement windows. But how do you know what types of windows are best for your home? The Best Exteriors team has compiled the pros and cons of most popular window materials to help you make an informed decision when planning window installation in Hayward CA.
Window Frame Materials
Windows of your home frame the view and complement your style, whether it is contemporary, traditional, or Victorian. Windows are made out of six different kinds of materials, including wood, vinyl, aluminum, fiberglass, wood-clad, and composite. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, which should be carefully considered when choosing replacement window.
You can choose wood for your windows if you’re looking for natural beauty. Wood windows give your home a traditional appearance, which is why it is a popular choice among homeowners.
In addition to its durability, wood is an environmentally friendly material that can be shaped and sized in a wide variety of ways. However, wood replaces windows with certain disadvantages as well.
- The strength of wood and its ability to harden over time make it ideal for long-term use.
- You can paint or stain it to match your decor or to complement your existing color scheme
- As compared to other materials, it does not allow for as much condensation
- Insulates homes better and keeps them warm and cool throughout the year
- Enhances the aesthetics of traditional homes, especially the older ones, and increases their value
- Creates a great sound barrier
- Weather conditions can cause it to rot and warp
- Insect- and pest-prone, especially to termites
- It is necessary to maintain them regularly, which includes painting, staining, caulking, and cleaning.
- In spite of the higher initial cost, they will last a lifetime if they are properly cared for.
Vinyl window frames are composed of PVC (polyvinyl chloride) and come in two types: pure virgin vinyl and recycled vinyl. The main difference between the two is durability and cost. Pure vinyl is stronger and lasts longer than recycled vinyl, but it is also more expensive.
The quality and durability of vinyl windows has greatly improved, making them a good choice for frames.
- It is a fact that vinyl window frames are extremely energy-efficient. This characteristic applies to windows manufactured with low-E glass as well. Vinyl window frames are also airtight, so when closed and locked, no air can escape.
- In comparison to other flooring materials, vinyl requires little to no maintenance. It can be cleaned with common household cleaners. Stains or paint aren’t needed.
- The UV resistance of vinyl prevents it from rotting and corroding.
- The average lifespan is 15 to 20 years.
- Vinyl is usually less expensive than other materials. According to the Cost vs. Value Report, vinyl offers a 74.3% return of investment as opposed to wood or fiberglass.
- Lightweight and easy-to-install
- There is less flexibility in design because vinyl cannot be painted, which limits color options.
- It is possible that darker shades will fade over time.
- In spite of advances in recycling technology, vinyl is difficult to recycle. Manufacturers have attempted to improve on this fact, but the costs are often higher than remanufacturing it from scratch.
Recently, fiberglass windows have gained popularity due to their strong durability and ease of maintenance. Fiberglass can mimic the look of wood windows, giving them a more aesthetic appeal.
- Its foam-filled core makes fiberglass an excellent insulator, making it more energy-efficient than other materials.
- No need to repaint this low maintenance material. It resists fading, flaking, and peeling.
- The presence of moisture won’t lead to rot, mold, or corrosion.
- A fiberglass window’s frame is thinner because fiber-reinforced resins are stiff.
- It can withstand hot temperatures and doesn’t expand or contract.
- It is possible to have real wood over fiberglass for a warmer aesthetic.
- Eco-friendly. There is no environmental impact associated with fiberglass frames since they are completely recyclable.
- There is a higher cost associated with fiberglass windows and window installation in Hayward CA.
- It is harder to customize due to fewer color and hardware options.
- Due to the rigid nature of fiberglass, installation takes longer than other materials.
Aluminum windows are an excellent choice for more modern homes. They provide a sleek appearance and require less upkeep than other materials. Aluminum is lightweight, but extremely strong and can support large amounts of glass. The advantage is that your home can have large windows, which allow for more natural light.
- Cheaper than wood windows.
- Due to aluminum’s easy manipulation, it can provide unique shapes and tailored fits.
- Aluminum is a lightweight, durable, and easy-to-install material.
- It comes in baked-on finishes that do not need to be repainted.
- The narrow frame provides better views and more glass area.
- It is not susceptible to insects
- Compared to other materials, aluminum is the least efficient and poorest insulator.
- Aluminum windows can develop moisture inside.
- When your home is in close proximity to saltwater and air, aluminum can corrode.
The exterior of wood-clad windows is covered with aluminum or fiberglass, providing homeowners with the look and feel of wood without the maintenance.
- It requires less maintenance
- Color options and customizations are available
- Aesthetically pleasing
- When maintained properly, this material is long-lasting and durable
- Compared to other materials, it is more expensive.
- There is a possibility of cladding separation.
Choosing composite windows allows you to enjoy the best aspects of wood, metal, and vinyl combined for stronger product features and the best qualities of various materials. Originally, composite materials were used only for the windowsills, but now they are used throughout the whole frame.
- It is more resistant to moisture, rotting, and warping
- Paints and stains can be applied to composite materials in order to mimic the look of natural wood.
- Environmentally friendly and energy-efficient
- Compared with other materials, it costs a lot more
As you can see, in recent years, window manufacturers have significantly improved the quality of their products. It is best to consult with a qualified professional who is aware of the specifics of windows and can recommend the best ones for your home.
Window Installation Hayward CA
You can count on Best Exteriors for assistance if you are still unsure of what type of replacement windows you need. Replacement windows are an important decision, one that will impact your home and family for many years to come. As part of a free consultation, we determine your preferences and functionality requirements. We will then prepare a detailed proposal to address any concerns or questions you may have. Call (866)-314-6701 to get a free quote on professional window installation in Hayward CA.