Top Clad Window Styles

October 11, 2010

Wood is a beautiful and natural window material, but is hard to maintain. For that reason, clad windows that feature wood cores and more durable cladding over the wood have grown in popularity in recent years. Windows may be clad in either aluminum or vinyl to provide many additional years of durability, comparative freedom from maintenance and superb visual appeal.

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Top clad windows styles include:

  • Double-hung windows. Twin sashes move vertically within side jams in the frame, providing moderate ventilation.
  • Double-hung tilt windows. The tilt version of double hung windows operate much like conventional ones, but the sashes tilt outward for easier cleaning.
  • Casement windows. A hinged sash opens outward using a crank or a slider bar. Hardware adds to costs, but the upsides are easy cleaning and good ventilation.
  • Slider windows. Like double-hung windows, they have twin sashes, but they operate horizontally rather than vertically.
  • Bay windows. Multiple sashes are framed within a structure that extends out from the wall. Bay windows add a striking look to the outside and inside of your home.

Top Clad Windows Styles: Choose from Aluminum, Vinyl Cladding

In vinyl clad windows, vinyl covers both sash and frames, helping ensure years of maintenance freedom. Vinyl-clad wood windows offer protection from the weather no wood window is likely to match. A palate of colors such as cream, tan, redwood and olive is offered. These colors permeate the vinyl to prevent noticeable scratches; however, these frames can't be painted. Vinyl clad windows can be comparatively higher in price than aluminum clad windows.

By contrast, aluminum is very "paint-friendly" and comes in a wide range of colors. It's also more resilient than vinyl. Aluminum cladding minimizes problems of swelling and blistering often linked with wood windows. Aluminum's downside is that it shows scratches more readily.

Bronze, copper and zinc are other metals used as cladding--all at higher cost.

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