Once upon a time, the biggest concern homeowners faced when it came to their windows was choosing stylish window treatments that complemented their interior décor. But nowadays, when homeowners think about windows, they’re more likely to focus on features such as energy efficiency, durability, and customizability. However, with so many different kinds of replacement windows on the market today—such as vinyl, fiberglass, composite, and wood—many homeowners are unsure which option would be the best all-around choice for their homes.
Today, we’re going to look at the pros and cons of vinyl replacement windows. By the end of this post, you should have a clear idea of whether the pros outweigh the cons for your home.
The Benefits of Vinyl Windows
In terms of upkeep, vinyl windows are hard to top. While some windows need to be repainted or restained over time because their color fades or the paint chips off, vinyl windows have the color infused into them during production. This ensures that vinyl windows will retain their vibrant color for many years. And, while vinyl windows of yesteryear were often prone to chalking, technology has improved significantly and most vinyl replacement windows made nowadays are impervious to this kind of deterioration.
Vinyl has excellent insulating properties, which is one of the reasons why vinyl windows are the most popular kind of windows on homes in the U.S. nowadays. In fact, the EPA suggests that installing vinyl windows can reduce a home’s energy bills by up to 15%. Vinyl is also able to resist extreme temperature fluctuations without warping or cracking. This is important because, while practically all energy-efficient windows have features such as low-E glass and heavy-duty weather-stripping, these components won’t be able to do their job effectively if the structural integrity of the window sash is compromised.
More Style Versatility
Vinyl replacement windows are usually available in a wider range of styles than windows made from other materials. This is because vinyl is an easier material to mold than metal or wood. So, if you want specialty shapes—such as round-top windows, octagons, or even something completely unique—you’re most likely to find what you’re looking for with vinyl windows.
The Drawbacks of Vinyl Windows
Some vinyl replacement windows have thicker frames and sashes than windows made from wood or aluminum. This means the borders around the glass are a bit wider, which can slightly reduce the amount of natural light that enters your home and provide a smaller viewing area.
Some homeowners don’t like vinyl windows because…well…they’re made of vinyl. If you want to retain the historical accuracy of an older home, wood windows would be a more suitable choice. Even fiberglass or wood-composite windows can be more easily made to resemble natural wood. So, if you’re a purist trying to achieve a particular aesthetic, vinyl windows may not fit the bill.
They’re Not Indestructible
While vinyl windows are very durable, they’re not as indestructible as metal. They’re not flammable in the same way that wood is, but vinyl windows can melt or warp when exposed to fire. Fortunately, this isn’t a problem for most people, as it’s not very common (or safe) to have any kind of fire near windows, but still may be something to consider when shopping for windows.
Overall, vinyl is a great choice if you’re considering a window replacement. Their energy efficiency, durability, weather resistance, and low maintenance requirements make them the ideal candidate for the vast majority of homeowners who are looking for replacement windows.
Contact West Shore Home Today
To learn more about having vinyl replacement windows installed at your home, contact the home improvement professionals at West Shore Home to schedule a complimentary consultation today.