Are Aluminum Windows the Right Choice for Your Home

Kevin Brown

Are Aluminum Windows the Right Choice for Your Home?

Aluminum windows are strong, come in many colors, and provide a modern look.

If you’re searching for a mid-priced window, aluminum is one to consider. These windows are a top choice for modern architecture and, unlike wood, are low-maintenance. Older aluminum windows have a bad rap for energy efficiency, but many of today’s models feature improved designs.

If you’re wondering if aluminum windows are a good pick for your home, here’s everything you need to know.

What are Aluminum Windows?

Are Aluminum Windows the Right Choice for Your Home

Aluminum is a lightweight and malleable metal, making it an excellent material for windows. It is also strong, allowing for a sleek and low-profile frame. Aluminum windows are powder-coated and come in various sizes and colors. There are different styles and types of aluminum frames available.

In the past, aluminum was not very energy-efficient, but improved designs now include a thermal break in the frame for better energy efficiency.

Although rare, some aluminum-clad windows have vinyl frames instead of wood.

Vinyl windows are 30% cheaper than aluminum windows, and they also have lower maintenance and higher energy efficiency. Both options are durable and come in various colors and sizes.

If you are considering purchasing aluminum windows, here are the pros and cons:

Pros:

– Strong and lightweight: Aluminum frames are strong without being bulky like vinyl frames.

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– Wide range of color options: Aluminum windows come in limitless color choices.

Pros:

  • Low maintenance – You don’t have to worry about refinishing as you do with wood.
  • Can repaint – Unlike vinyl, you can repaint an aluminum window if you choose to.

Cons:

  • Not as energy efficient – Aluminum is a heat conductor, making it less energy efficient than vinyl, fiberglass, or wood.
  • Can dent, fade, and corrode – Although unlikely for high-quality aluminum windows, they can still dent, fade, or corrode over time or when not well-maintained.
  • More expensive than vinyl – Expect to pay 30% more for an aluminum window compared to vinyl.

What Brands Sell Aluminum Windows?

If you’re interested in black aluminum windows, you can find them from any of the listed manufacturers.

When Should You Replace Aluminum Windows?

An aluminum window typically lasts 20-30 years, depending on climate and maintenance. Clean it 2-4 times a year and lubricate the hardware and hinges as needed.

Are Aluminum Windows Cheaper than Wood?

Most aluminum windows are cheaper than wood. An aluminum-clad window may be your best option.

These windows have a wood frame with an aluminum coating on the outside, and are comparable in price to wood windows.

What are the Best Alternatives to Aluminum Windows?

Not sure if aluminum windows are for you? These are the best alternatives:

– Fiberglass windows are similar in strength to aluminum, with a thin frame. They have a modern look, are energy efficient, and require no maintenance. The downside is that fiberglass comes in fewer styles and colors and is more expensive.

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– Vinyl windows are often compared to aluminum frames. They are less expensive and more energy efficient but don’t offer the same modern look as aluminum.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Should you have aluminum windows if you live by the ocean?

Standard aluminum windows are not suitable for oceanside homes as the salty air can cause corrosion. However, brands like Marvin offer aluminum products specifically designed for coastal homes.

Can you paint aluminum windows black?

Yes, you can paint aluminum windows any color, including black, but make sure to check your manufacturer’s warranty beforehand to avoid voiding it.

Do aluminum windows sweat?

Older aluminum windows may produce condensation or “sweat,” especially during cold winters when there is a significant temperature difference between the inside and outside. However, most modern aluminum windows with thermal breaks do not experience this issue.

Aluminum windows can rust – especially those without thermal breaks or protective powdered coatings. To prevent rusting, clean your aluminum windows 2-4 times a year with an aluminum cleaner.

Final Thoughts:

There is a myth that all aluminum windows are bad because the material conducts heat. However, many aluminum windows nowadays are thermally improved for better energy efficiency. Additionally, aluminum is a strong and malleable material that manufacturers can use to create thin window frames and sashes, giving them a modern appearance.

Aluminum windows are available in various colors, with some top brands still offering them. However, they are more expensive than vinyl windows and are not as energy efficient or low-maintenance.

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