There are many different types of replacement windows made with all kinds of different materials, but what is best for your San Diego home, and what is the difference between the most common types of materials used in replacement windows? Read on to learn more about the advantages and disadvantages associated with some of the materials used in replacement windows so you can make an informed decision when purchasing.
Vinyl replacement windows are popular with many San Diego homeowners because they are cost-effective, energy-efficient and virtually maintenance-free. They have the ability to withstand the elements very well, including the salt air experienced in San Diego’s coastal areas. Vinyl windows won’t rot, splinter, rust, or corrode. Vinyl frames are available in multiple colors, but cannot be painted. If you want to change the color of vinyl windows, they must be replaced. They are readily available from almost any replacement window dealer, as well as from big box home improvement stores.
Replacement windows made with fiberglass frames are extremely durable—lasting 40 years or more with proper maintenance. They are extremely strong and resistant to both expansion and corrosion. They also resist the transfer of heat and cold, making them very energy efficient. The exterior frames are often made to mimic the look of wood frames, and can even be painted if properly prepared. The disadvantages associated with fiberglass replacement windows are that they are more expensive than vinyl replacement windows, and not all replacement window dealers sell them.
Wood windows are an attractive choice because they give a home a more classic and traditional look. Diego homeowners can stain or paint interior and exterior frames to their liking, giving their home a truly custom look. Wood replacement windows also provide excellent insulation, and with proper care, can last a lifetime. Also available are wood clad windows, in which the exterior frames are covered with vinyl or aluminum. This allows San Diego homeowners to have paintable and stainable wood frames on the interior of the home, while protecting the exterior frames from the elements. You’ll pay extra for wood windows, but many homeowners find that the benefits of wood windows justify the price. Wood windows also require maintenance on the exterior frames.
Aluminum frames are great for very large windows, as aluminum is an extremely strong material. Aluminum is also a good choice if you are looking for windows with a slim profile for a home with a more modern style. However, aluminum is not the most energy-efficient material, as compared to vinyl, fiberglass, or wood, which is why many homeowners replace their older aluminum windows with windows made with other, more energy-efficient materials. They also can corrode over time, which should be taken into consideration, especially if you live near the San Diego coast.
Stainless Steel Hardware
Stainless steel is a popular material for window hardware used in San Diego homes, especially those near the coast. It is durable and resistant to the corrosive effects of the moist, salty air. Stainless steel hardware is usually found in higher-end replacement windows or is considered an upgrade option by many replacement window manufacturers.