Updating the windows in your home could have a significant impact on the look of your property and a considerable effect on its value. Perhaps more importantly, replacing the windows in an old house could make it a much more comfortable and secure environment for you and your family. Whatever your budget, there will be a window solution for you.
Many older houses have ill-fitting windows that are single glazed. This situation could result in chilly draughts and the loss of your expensive home heating through the cracks. When you think that double glazing is over 70 % more efficient at thermal insulation, you can begin to imagine the money that you could save on heating bills if you replace your single glazed windows. The most modern double glazing has argon gas between the panes rather than air. Argon is a colorless and odorless gas, and because it is denser than air, it is super efficient at thermal insulation. Double glazing traps warm inside and keeps that cold air out. It also blocks outside noise, such as traffic noise, far more effectively than single. Triple glazing is also available with an even higher degree of insulation.
Low – E Glass
It is also worth considering low emissivity glass (Low-E glass) for your panes. Low-E glass prevents infrared and ultraviolet light from penetrating the window panes allowing illumination to your home without uncomfortable levels of heat or damaging rays. It also prevents heat from escaping through the pane of glass itself.
Newer windows are also more secure than traditional latch windows found in many older homes. These latches can quickly be snapped by opportunistic thieves, whereas modern locking mechanisms can be anchored within the frame and are far more robust, making your home much more secure.
Window Frame Materials
There are many different styles of window frames available now, and new technologies and materials mean that wood is no longer the only option. A window replacement company will be able to advise you on the correct type of frame for your home and budget, but here is a brief look at the most popular types of window frames available today.
Wood is the traditional and classic choice of material for window frames. Wood provides a superior window in both style and strength. Most modern wooden windows are made from pine or douglas fir, but a very high-end manufacturer may offer teak. Often seen as the environmentally friendly choice, wooden frames can now be engineered to resist mold and rot and strengthened to protect them from bowing or warping. Of course, the one feature of wood that none of the other available materials share is that it can be painted or stained, again and again, allowing you to customize the look of your home. Well-maintained wooden window frames will add value to your house should you wish to sell.
Vinyl window frames are a popular and modern choice. Not only can they be stunning, but they are available in a wide range of styles and colors. However, their huge advantage is that they are very long-lasting and easy to maintain. Vinyl frames are made from polyvinyl chloride, which won’t warp, rot, or be discolored by UV rays. Check out a side view of the construction of your windows – it should have multiple chambers of different sizes within the frame. This design of construction will keep the vinyl stable in the heat. Many homeowners love vinyl windows as they never need to be painted or restained!
Aluminum Window Frames
Aluminum window frames are becoming very popular in modern homes, particularly those an architect has designed. They have a strong aesthetic appeal and can be tailored to customized sizes and shapes. The manufacturer can paint the frames in a wide range of colors using hard-wearing polyester powder coat paint. A popular style twist is to have the inside of the frame painted a different color to the outside – perhaps white within and black on the outside. Aluminum frames are solid and durable and only need to be wiped down with a cloth to keep them clean.
Wood Clad Frames
A relative newcomer to the windows market is the wood-clad frame. This ingenious design combines the traditional beauty of wooden frames on the interior with durable vinyl or aluminum on the exterior. You can still have the classic look of stained wood on the window frames inside your property or even paint them to match the rest of your decor if you wish, while the exterior frames will endure whatever the elements throw at them.
Fiberglass Window Frames
Fibreglass window frames are one of the newer technologies in the windows industry and are currently quite expensive. However, the reason for the relatively high cost is that fiberglass windows are super durable. This quality has made them popular in commercial and public sector properties for some time, but now they are available for private homes too. Fiberglass is lightweight and super strong – up to eight times stronger than vinyl. This strength means that frames can be super slim, giving a discreet frame that many home designers love.
Once you have decided on the type of window frame you require, then you can think about the style of window you prefer. You may want to honor the original style of your house, choosing traditional single or double-hung windows. If you have a marvelous garden or a spectacular view, you may wish its beauty to flood into your home through an enormous picture window. Perhaps you hanker after a window seat where you can sit and watch the world go by. If so, you may like a bay window that can have a seat created in its curve.
Your window replacement company will be able to advise you on which type of frame and style will be best for you, your budget, and your home.