Which Window Material Should You Choose?

September 12, 2022

Credit: Nathan Fertig via Unsplash

It seems there are endless decisions to make when getting new windows, and they are not always easy. Replacement windows may be easier to decide on depending on the aesthetic of your home, while new construction windows can open up a whole bunch of new questions. Either way, there are many factors that go into the decision.

Windows are a long-term investment, so it’s important to consider your long-term needs. When selecting a window material, the factors to look at include aesthetics, features, function, and affordability.

To know which material is the right choice for you, you need to know the advantages and disadvantages of each. Here, we break down common window materials and how to determine which one is best for you in the long term.

Vinyl

An incredibly popular material, vinyl first came to prominence in the mid-20th century. Their popularity stems from their affordability as well as the ease of function and maintenance they bring. Kitchener homeowners looking for a window material able to stand up to cold winters often look to buy vinyl windows in Kitchener for their energy efficiency.

However, it’s important to be on the lookout for lower-quality vinyl windows. Lower quality vinyl tends to contract and expand with temperature changes, which can impact the seal and even cause it to warp.

If you’re looking for options, vinyl provides them as it comes in a variety of colors. Vinyl also doesn’t require much upkeep and is easy to clean with mild soap and a soft cloth, so if you’re looking for something that won’t require much of your time, vinyl is a great choice.

Wood

It’s hard to beat the stunning appearance of wood windows - especially if you love the cottage-core aesthetic. They certainly provide a natural look and can be stained in a variety of different finishes to match the rest of your home. If you love color, wood can be painted to give a nice splash of color.

Wood is a natural insulator and one of the best energy efficient options, so they’re a practical option for those cold Kitchener winters.

The only two downsides of wood windows are affordability and upkeep. All the wonderful benefits of wood windows come at a cost: all wood windows are the most expensive window material.

The other downside is a different kind of price you pay for gorgeous, energy efficient, versatile windows: maintenance. Wood windows easily require the most upkeep of all window materials. They need to be refinished every few years and need to be inspected for signs of insect or weather-related damage.

Clad

Another option that many people overlook is clad windows. These are windows made of wood and clad in another material, typically aluminum or vinyl. This gives the look and feel of wood windows in the interior of your home, but with vinyl or aluminum on the exterior, it protects the wood from the elements, requiring far less upkeep. They are also more affordable, typically in between vinyl and wood windows.

These are some of the most popular window materials, and whichever one is best for you will depend on your personal circumstances and preferences. Follow this guide and get the windows best suited to your lifestyle.

 

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