What You Need To Know When Considering Vinyl Windows

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What You Need To Know When Considering Vinyl Windows

8 April 2015
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Articles

Vinyl windows are a popular option for many homeowners because they are inexpensive, easy to maintain and boost energy efficiency. If you are considering replacing your old windows with vinyl ones, check out these must-know facts to determine if it is the right choice for your home.

Vinyl Windows Are One of the Least Expensive Options

Vinyl is one of the least expensive options when it's time to replace your windows. A typical vinyl sliding window costs between $575 and $775, and stylish double hung vinyl windows average about $800 for a full replacement. On top of that, vinyl lasts longer than many other window materials. On average, expect your vinyl windows to last between 20 and 40 years. So, you save even more money because you won't have to replace them as often.

They Have Great Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is another way vinyl windows help keep money in your wallet. Unlike metals, vinyl offers great insulation because it is not conductive. Conductivity refers to how much heat passes directly through the window. Vinyl impedes the flow of heat into your house on summer days and out of your house on winter days. This allows you to use less heating and cooling to keep the temperature comfortable.

They Are Durable

Vinyl windows are extremely durable. They withstand scratches and daily wear and tear quite well. Standard white vinyl windows are white all the way through, so even if they do get scratched, you can't really tell. However, if you do choose a colored vinyl, and it gets scratched, the white will show through. If you live in an area prone to hurricanes and heavy windstorms, consider vinyl impact windows to offer more durability in high wind.

Maintenance Is Minimal

Keeping your vinyl windows looking their best doesn't take much effort. Vinyl is susceptible to mold and mildew, so keeping it clean is important, but you don't have to worry about painting it or staining it. Unlike metal, vinyl isn't prone to rust, and unlike wood, it isn't prone to decay or infestation. Therefore, you don't have to worry about protecting it from the elements. On the down side, if you decide you want to paint your windows a new color, the process is difficult. Vinyl can't hold most paint, so you'll have to get specialty paint. With this paint, the colors are limited, and the work is complicated.

Vinyl Expands and Contracts

Vinyl is known to expand in warm weather and shrink in cold. If the window shifts in size too much, this can cause air leaks. Caulk is flexible, so small shifts aren't a problem; the caulk moves as the window moves. However, if the vinyl shifts too much, the caulk can detach from the window, leaving a hole for air to escape. This is why vinyl windows requires routine re-caulking and sealing.  

Vinyl Windows Don't Match Every House Style

New windows are a great way to boost the resale value of your home. However, with vinyl windows, that isn't always the case. Vinyl windows don't match every style of house. Installing vinyl windows in a craftsman style home from the 1920s or a Victorian home affects the character of the house because they just belong. Even if you get vinyl that mimics the look of wood, the vinyl windows still stick out like a sore thumb and may affect the value of the home.

Vinyl windows don't work for every style of home, but if you feel they'll work on your house, give it a shot. If you're ready to replace your windows, contact a window contractor. Call today and get an estimate. 

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