Pros and Cons of Vinyl Replacement Windows

December 24, 2009

Vinyl windows are a popular and cost effective option for window replacement. Shopping carefully for replacement windows can help you find the best deal on windows and installation. Here are some things to keep in mind when shopping for vinyl windows:

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Window Replacement: Vinyl Advantages

  • Inexpensive: Vinyl replacement windows can be a cost-conscious option. Vinyl windows are relatively inexpensive compared to wood and other materials.
  • Durable: Vinyl is weather resistant and durable. It stands up to sun and moisture and won't warp or discolor.
  • No finishing: You don't have to finish vinyl windows, as vinyl window frames and sashes are saturated with color as part of the manufacturing process. Vinyl windows are available in a variety of colors and textures.
  • Low maintenance: Vinyl window frames and sashes don't require much more than an occasional wipe-down with a damp cloth. They don't crack, chip or fade, and don't host termites, mold, or dry rot.

Vinyl windows are typically a good choice for residential window replacement, but there are a few things that you should know before purchasing vinyl replacement windows:

New Windows: Cautionary Notes

  • Thick frames and sashes: The nature of vinyl requires thicker window frames and sashes, which can result in less glass area and some reduced light.
  • Cannot be painted: Vinyl windows cannot be repainted, so it's important to choose a color that compliments your home's interior and exterior. White, black, and neutral shades are most popular.
  • Unmistakably plastic: The texture and surface appearance of vinyl windows cannot be disguised as wood or other material; if you're refurbishing an old home and wish to maintain architectural integrity, vinyl windows may not be your best choice.

Many window dealers specialize in a specific type of windows; taking time to shop and compare window materials, qualify, and installation packages can help you find your best deal on vinyl replacement windows.

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