Replacement windows are made from a number of different types of materials ranging from wood to steal and even fiberglass, and may often times be made from a combination of these types of materials. Generally speaking the materials that offer the strongest protection from the elements, will cost a bit more but will pay for themselves in terms of energy efficiency and lower maintenance costs.
Here are a few of the most commonly used materials along with a little information about each:
First up there is wood – what is the most common material used and replacement windows, as wood has been used in most areas of construction for thousands of years. Wooden windows provided a unique look and feel for a home’s interior and exterior, and they can be easily painted to match the color schemes of pretty much any home or other structure. An added benefit of wood is that it will not conduct cold like metal will, and wood will also not allow condensation to the same degree as most other materials.
Next up is aluminum – when those made of aluminum has a very high durability quality and are usually lighter and thinner then there wooden counterparts. Aluminum windows will raise and lower very easily as they are not weighted down with a very heavy frame. Aluminum windows are often times filled with foam in order to provide a thermal barrier and reduce the amount of heat loss from your home; they are also sometimes coated with vinyl to enhance their looks as well as their installation quality.
Last but not least is vinyl – vinyl windows are typically made from rigid PVC, which will have a hollowed out interior that helps to make them resistant to losing heat from your home and creating condensation on the windows themselves. The downside of vinyl windows is that with the cheaper vinyl windows, you may find that there is a greater degree of difficulty with operating the Windows over time; meaning that the Windows may not close completely as they once did – providing for small leaks that will begin to allow your heat to seep out and cool air to seep in.
Hopefully this guide will help you to be able to decide which window materials will best suit you and your home. As you shop around take note of the various options offered by different manufacturers and different installation companies, and see what they have to say about the pros and cons of the various materials.