“When it comes to windows, it can be a confusing proposition to determine the best windows for your home. After all, there are many different types of glass, coatings, frames, and other features. Frame types can be even more confusing.
If you’re considering window replacement or need to undertake a window repair project, it’s a good idea to evaluate the window frame types. Aluminum, wood, and vinyl are just a few of the choices. There are many more.
In your search for the best window for your project, keep the following information in mind as you make your selection:
Aluminum window frames are very popular due to the fact that they are light, durable, and low maintenance. They come in enamel finishes which means they come in a variety of colors too. This makes them very low-maintenance which is attractive to most any home owner. The biggest issue with aluminum is that it is a high heat conductor which means it can cause problems in varying temperatures.
When it is cold, aluminum frames get very cold and condensation can become a problem.
Aluminum with Thermal Break
Even with its negative characteristic of causing condensation, aluminum remains a material of choice. That’s why the breakthrough with ‘thermal break’ was invented. This is a solution to the traditional aluminum frame. Thermal break works by splitting the frame into an interior and exterior part. The new ‘thermal break’ makes them much more effective.
Wood has been a long-time window frame choice. It is easy to shape into various sizes and shapes and it has been readily available for years. The appearance and functionality of wood is desirable. Although they are good options, wood frames are not as durable as some other products and they require more maintenance, including painting and scraping, puttying, and repainting periodically. The good news is that with careful maintenance, they can be a good investment for a long time.
Wood clad windows are simply a wooden frame with a vinyl or aluminum cover clad to the exterior. They require less maintenance than regular wood but still have the wood on the inside making them visually appealing.
Vinyl is a good choice due to its good insulation value. They require little maintenance and are also known for their good moisture resistance.
Fiberglass is an option that is very strong and they typically have air cavities like their vinyl counterparts. Their thermal performance is better than wood or vinyl.
When it comes to choosing window frames, study the available options and choose the one that is best for your home and the climate in which you live. If maintenance is a big issue to you, stay with one of the low-maintenance materials and get the windows you desire. Today’s products make it easier than ever to choose good products that will last for many years to come.