Deciding between wood vs. vinyl windows? You might be looking to replace your old windows in order to improve your home’s energy efficiency, update the appearance or add value. However, it is just as important to identify the type of window that best fits your home and personal needs.
Choosing what window material to go with can be a tough and overwhelming task without proper research and knowledge. Two of the most common materials used in windows are wood and vinyl. While wood windows have their benefits, learn why vinyl windows are the better option overall.
1. Wood vs. Vinyl Windows: Affordability
Vinyl windows are a popular choice among homeowners looking for an inexpensive alternative to other more expensive materials like solid wood and fiberglass windows without compromising on quality. The long-term savings from replacing old windows with new vinyl windows are considerable and make vinyl windows worth the cost.
Higher-quality woods such as mahogany and alder are expensive. In addition to this, wood windows require frequent maintenance, such as painting, staining, and refurbishing, which can get costly over time.
2. Vinyl Windows are Just as Energy-Efficient as Wood Windows
One of the most recognized benefits of vinyl windows is their insulating properties. Vinyl windows are made from a plastic called polyvinyl chloride, also known as PVC. PVC has a high R-value, which is a numerical value assigned to the amount of insulation a material has. When compared with aluminum, vinyl keeps your heat from escaping during the winter but protects your home from heat entering during the summer.
Combine vinyl windows with double pane glass that is glazed with four layers of Low-E and filled with Argon gas for even more insulation. The Low-E prevents harmful UV rays from entering your home, and non-toxic argon gas is pumped between the panes to act as another cushion of insulation.
The biggest advantage of a properly insulated window is an overall reduction in energy costs. Even though a window replacement project may seem financially off-putting, you can likely make up this cost in energy bills in a few years with vinyl windows.
Wood windows also provide great insulation since wood is a natural insulator. However, since wood windows can be susceptible to rotting and warping, their insulating properties can be negatively affected.
3. Wood vs. Vinyl Windows: Maintenance
Another added benefit of vinyl windows is that they require virtually no maintenance after they’re installed. The vinyl frame comes manufactured in your desired color or finish, so there is no need to paint or stain them yourself. You can also pre-select a designer exterior color for your windows that will be professionally applied for you by a window manufacturer. The color is UV resistant, won’t fade over time, and does not require maintenance.
Vinyl windows are less porous than wood. Therefore it is harder for dirt and grime to get trapped. This makes the frame easy to clean with soap and water. If you are looking for minimal upkeep, vinyl windows are a good choice.
Wood windows require a lot of maintenance and preservation. It is recommended to stain and finish wood windows every few years to keep up the elegant and vibrant appearance. Many homeowners refurbish wood windows regularly to get rid of bumps, dents, and scratches.
4. Vinyl Windows are More Durable than Wood Windows
Many homeowners find that vinyl windows are very durable and can last a lifetime. These windows can resist dirt, mold, scratches, and dents. Rest assured that the exterior frame won’t rot or warp over time, even when exposed to the elements and harsh ultraviolet sunlight. Since this is the case, vinyl windows will last far longer than other materials.
Since wood was once a living material, if it is not properly taken care of and treated, it can experience rotting and swelling due to the moisture that is in the air. Another frequent issue in choosing wood is the threat of termites, which can destroy the wood in your window and any wood that resides in your home.
5. Vinyl Windows Improve Your Home’s Value
Any new window purchase can improve your home’s value, including the purchase of new vinyl windows. Vinyl windows are available in many colors, shapes, and sizes, so they can be customized to fit the style and design needs of any home. Many homeowners prefer wood’s visual appeal over vinyl. However, vinyl windows can be customized to have the look and feel of wood. Many homeowners can’t even tell the difference and even prefer all of the benefits that vinyl windows provide.
Through and through, vinyl windows are the best option for homeowners that want windows that look great, are energy efficient, low-maintenance, and inexpensive.
If you’re deciding between wood vs. vinyl windows, hopefully, this information makes your choice easier. Over the last several years, vinyl windows have been the most common replacement window, and with all of the vinyl’s benefits, that will continue for years to come. If you’re set to install vinyl windows in your home, the skilled team at California Energy Contractors can help! Give us a call at (866) 963-0316, or click here for a FREE estimate!