Understanding Replacement Windows
|Vinyl Windows||Aluminum Windows||Wood Windows|
|Cost||On average vinyl windows are about 30% less expensive than aluminum windows.||About 30% more than vinyl windows. Aluminum windows that meet California Title 24 Energy Efficiency Requirements more than double the cost of vinyl windows.||Wood windows are costlier. Call it the law of supply and demand, the price of beauty, or just the fact that fewer companies make wood windows–but you will pay more for wood. Typically two to three times the cost of vinyl.|
Many colors available with smooth or textured stained/dyed PVC. Shape, size, and panes are customizable. However, once you pick a color, you are stuck with it; vinyl windows cannot be painted over (unlike fiberglass windows).
Vinyl frames are more traditional in appearance than aluminum frames.
Vinyl window frames are typically thicker than aluminum frames and offer options of smooth, textured, or faux wood finishes.
Many colors available with smooth or textured with enamel powder-coating. Shape, size, and panes are customizable. Real-wood interior available.
Thinner aluminum frames are typically finished in smooth or textured powder-coated enamel for an ultimately sleeker, modern appearance that is more conducive to fitting in with contemporary architectural styles.
Excellent. The point of wood windows is usually to keep the interior natural or stained, with sealer on top, thus keeping the wood grain visible. Or, if you wish to have the look of solid colors, you can paint wood.
One chief value of wood windows is that the inside frames can remain a natural wood color, if desired. Exteriors and interiors may be painted any color.
Keep in mind that wood windows need to be maintained on a regular basis to keep their beauty.
Vinyl windows are more energy efficient than aluminum windows.
Vinyl windows regularly outperform competitive products because of the excellent thermal performance of the frame.
Vinyl windows insulate better than aluminum windows. Vinyl material minimizes heat transfer.
For aluminum window frames to insulate well, they need what is called a thermal break in which the two halves (inner and outer) are held together by a non-metal insulating material.
Aluminum windows tend to conduct heat (and cold) and, therefore, are less energy efficient. You may look for more advanced aluminum options labeled “thermally improved,” or install special “thermal breaks”—insulation within the frame to prevent thermal energy loss—which just happen to be made of vinyl.
|Excellent. Wood-framed windows are excellent at inhibiting the transmission of cold or heat from the outside. So it’s a great energy-saver.|
Durable in most climates and conditions. Good for residential applications, less suitable for commercial buildings that need more structural strength.
Both types of windows are very resistant to scratching, cracking, and marring. Vinyl windows, however, boast extra durability when it comes to dents and chips, too. Vinyl frames—which are constructed of the same material all the way through—would be less likely to show any chips or scratches than aluminum frames, where any damage to the finish will expose the raw metal underneath.
Very durable in all climates and conditions.
Aluminum can also face challenges of corrosion and color change. Over time, the steel or zinc fasteners used for aluminum windows will corrode and pit, especially in environments like coastal towns with salty air. The enamel finish on aluminum windows is more subject to fading in strong sunlight than the dyes used in vinyl construction.
Durable if properly maintained. Properly maintained wood windows are in homes 100 years old. If not maintained regularly wood windows will rot or get eaten by termites in just a few years.
Wood windows need to be maintained on a regular basis to keep their beauty.
|Installation||Professional recommended||Professional recommended||Professional recommended|
Vinyl never requires repainting.
In general, when shopping for replacement windows, it is a good idea to choose a color and finish that you can live with, whether you choose vinyl or aluminum. Many paints and coatings will not adhere well to either material and will be prone to peeling and flaking. Because vinyl is the same color throughout, there is seldom any need to repaint.
Minimal maintenance required. Aluminum windows aren’t too much more work to maintain but they are prone to condensation—which can lead to rust or mold. Aluminum should be cleaned with a special aluminum cleaner, rinsed, and dried semi-regularly. Also be proactive about lubricating the moving parts to prevent undue wear and tear on the metal mechanisms.
Scratched or chipped aluminum can be repainted or re-coated with enamel paint, but it may be difficult to exactly match the original finish.
Wood-exterior windows need painting or sealing, not just at the time of installation, but throughout their lifetime.
Painting wood windows is an exacting task and must be done frequently.
|Insulation||Excellent||Fair to good||Excellent|
Some toxicity in manufacturing, but materials can be recycled. Vinyl windows require only one-third as much energy to manufacture as aluminum windows.
Using vinyl over aluminum or steel window frames saves the United States nearly 2 trillion BTUs of energy per year – enough to meet the yearly electrical needs of 20,000 single-family homes.
|Some toxicity in manufacturing, but materials can be recycled.||Wood has long been recognized as a renewable resource and an environmentally-friendly component material for a wide variety of products. Wood is the world’s only 100 percent renewable building material and is “manufactured” with the organic power of solar energy.|
|Popularity||Very popular in home construction, less so for commercial buildings.||Extremely popular for commercial buildings, less so for home construction because of cost.||Wood has dwindled to a 16%-17% market share primarily due to cost, so manufacturers and retailers do not prioritize them.|
Benefits of Replacement Windows
- Replacement windows and doors provide greater comfort, energy efficiency, and savings on home energy bills: Many homeowners choose to get new windows to save money on their energy bills. For example, upgrading from single- to double-paned windows has the potential to save you an immense amount of money on heating and cooling your home. Other features available in replacement windows that can add up to even more energy savings are low E glass, tinted glass, and windows with argon in the space between the panes.
- Replacement windows and doors will improve your home’s appearance: Simply changing the style of your windows and doors can make a huge difference in the appearance of your home, and Metropolitan High Performance Windows offers a wide selection of styles, from traditional to contemporary. Plus, we offer window and door hardware options that can significantly improve your home’s appearance on the inside, as well.
- Replacement windows and doors can provide you with increased ventilation throughout your home: Replacing windows that don’t open with new, screened windows that do can greatly increase the comfort level in your home. Your Metropolitan High Performance Windows service representative can show you a variety of window styles that have single or multiple moving sashes to improve the ventilation in your home.
Understanding Energy Efficiency
Getting Started with Metropolitan High Performance Windows
- Once you’ve selected Metropolitan for your replacement window or patio door installation project, we’ll do a final walk-through of your home to re-measure each window and re-confirm your selections, options and preferences.
- We’ll immediately order your replacement windows and doors from our manufacturing facility, custom-measured to your home’s specifications. Production time is generally two to two and a half weeks.
- Within seven to ten days we will contact you to schedule the installation on a day and time convenient for you. We will provide you the name of the assigned crew chief and answer any additional questions.
- On installation day, our crew will arrive at the agreed upon time and begin your window and patio door replacement. Most jobs are completed in one or two days. We will never interrupt your installation to work on another customer’s project. The crew cleans up as they go and never leaves a mess or an open, unfinished window. The job isn’t done until you are completely satisfied.
- When your replacement window and patio door project is completed, you will receive a customer satisfaction survey that will allow you to rate your windows, the installers, and your experience with Metropolitan High Performance Windows. We’re confident you’ll be satisfied with your beautiful new, energy-efficient windows and patio doors!
We don’t work that way and we like to keep it simple. We look at your project, determine the labor cost, price the windows, add a modest mark-up and hand you the estimate. No crazy math, no “coupon gimmicks”, no “buy now” or the price goes up offers, no pressure. Simple, straightforward, fair prices for top quality windows and installation from the best window and door installation company in Southern California. And our quotes are good for 90 days so you can think it over.