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Window Material Comparison: The Best Window Type for Your Home

posted on May 27, 2022 in Global Blogs

beautiful modern house with new windows

What is the best material to use for your windows? The answer may vary based on your home’s exterior finishes, style and color scheme. Choosing the right window material comes down to personal preference, however, we do have some suggestions for helping you make that decision.   

Common Window and Siding Materials  

The most common window materials include vinyl, wood and fiberglass. Each of these materials comes in a variety of styles, colors and finishes with multiple options and price points. The best window material for your home will depend on your style, budget, climate and home exterior. 

Before choosing your material, carefully consider different window materials and how they work within your existing home exterior as well as their performance in your area’s climate.

wood windows comparison

Wood Windows

Since it’s the original window material, wood is a more traditional choice. Homeowners prefer wood for its natural beauty, warmth and versatility. You can stain it to match other woodwork in your home, and paint it any color. Wood also naturally insulates your home, making it a more energy-efficient option. Wood windows fit into traditional and modern styles but are an almost imperative choice for certain house styles like craftsman and many historic homes.

fiberglass windows in a well-lit room

Fiberglass Windows

Fiberglass is a composite material that is both strong and durable. It protects your home against extreme heat and cold, and has the insulating qualities of wood, making them a great fit for very hot and humid climates or areas with extreme temperature changes. With fiberglass windows, you get a natural look that can last for years without having to pick up a paintbrush.

vinyl window material comparison

Vinyl Windows

Vinyl is popular for its affordability and energy efficiency. It’s made of plastics that provide natural insulation and withstand the elements for years. Scratch-resistant vinyl window frames are low maintenance. They are easy to clean and don't typically have to be painted, stained or refinished. Vinyl is a material that has become common in many regions and is often found in ranch-style homes and areas where the climate tends to be humid or rainy.

Best Replacement Windows for a Stucco House

Stucco homes are extremely popular in seaside areas because they withstand exposure to salt air, making fiberglass a great choice for these homes. Fiberglass windows complement stucco exteriors nicely, as fiberglass is known for its resistance to extreme temperatures and durability.  

Replacing windows in a stucco exterior can add an element of complexity. Once the windows are set, you’ll need to opt for either wider trim to cover the opening or have the stucco patched or repaired by a professional. 

the best windows for a house with vinyl siding

Best Replacement Windows for Vinyl Siding

Vinyl windows are a natural choice for homes with vinyl siding, creating a cohesive exterior. Vinyl windows tend to be competitively priced and hold up well in varied climates with few maintenance requirements.

Replacement windows on homes with vinyl siding are perhaps the least complex to install. Due to vinyl siding’s flexibility, experienced installers are able to remove areas necessary for the window replacement and reposition the existing vinyl siding pieces without disturbing the façade. 

the best windows for a home with brick exterior

Best Replacement Windows for a Brick House 

Wood is a classic window material, which makes it a great fit for traditional style brick homes. Wood windows also allow you to customize the color to fit your exterior color scheme. This is key, as many homeowners  find that white is too stark against a traditional red brick. 

Window installation in brick homes can sometimes be more complicated, making precise measurements is imperative. Whatever material you choose for your brick home, ensure that the installers complete accurate and precise measurements for custom, made-to-order windows that fit your exact needs.

Finding the Best Fit

 Remember that you don’t have to face this choice alone! Visit your local showroom or schedule an in-home consultation and talk over your window material options with an expert.

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*Study of homeowner perceptions of leading national brands. Study commissioned by Pella, 2021.