When you're choosing replacement windows, you usually have four popular choices: vinyl, wood, fiberglass, composite, and metal. But there's a reason why vinyl tends to be overall the most popular choice for modern replacement windows. Vinyl is a versatile material that is energy-efficient and easy to use and maintain. Here are the major advantages that vinyl has over the most popular options.
Vinyl Windows vs. Wood Windows
The original type of window frame, wood windows are still often used in many old constructions. Wood windows are very cheap and easy to install; in fact, most people can create their own window frames if they want to. But compared to vinyl, wood windows are very difficult to maintain. They can easily succumb to rot and they often need to be refinished, restored, or repainted. Wood windows are also not as well-insulated as vinyl.
Vinyl Windows vs. Fiberglass Windows
Fiberglass is a very durable option. Both more expensive and longer-lasting than vinyl, it's often placed in more expensive constructions. Fiberglass is also very well-insulated. The major issue with fiberglass is its cost. It also needs to be maintained. Fiberglass windows have to be painted, and they will need to be repainted as time passes.
Vinyl Windows vs. Composite Windows
A composite window may be made out of any of these materials -- but multiple types of material. As an example, it may be made primarily out of wood, but have a veneer of vinyl. Ideally, a composite window will have all the benefits of these materials without the drawbacks: it may be as durable as fiberglass, but more close to the affordability of vinyl. Unfortunately, composite windows can also have the downsides as well. They may be more expensive than vinyl windows, but may not be as easy to maintain.
Vinyl Windows vs. Metal Windows
Aluminum windows are the cheapest option, even cheaper than wood. They also require very little by way of maintenance. The problem with aluminum windows is that they are not well-insulated at all. Compared to vinyl, they can cost a homeowner quite a bit of money over time. They are also not as aesthetically pleasing as vinyl.
Of course, there are some areas in which vinyl may not be an optimal choice -- it's simply the best all-around choice. You can view many different types of materials at the showroom of a home renovation store. Selecting a window often means choosing between a balance of cost, maintenance, and appearance. For more information, visit a business such as Clayton Floors & More.