Planning on buying new windows for your home or commercial building? There are a range of options available on the market with different designs, sizes, shapes and cost among others. This essentially means that you’re sure to find one suited to your needs. If you’re considering getting aluminium windows or UPVC (unplasticised polyvinyl chloride) windows, it’s important to weigh in the various pros and cons of each before making your decision. That way, you can be able to find a window type that suits your needs as well as specifications.
Pros & Cons of Aluminium Windows
Pros of Aluminium Windows
1. Very Durable
One of the key pros of these types of windows is that they have a relatively long lifespan. The material is typically very strong and hardy, making it ideal for areas with very severe weather. This particular feature makes aluminium windows a cost-effective option as they’ll serve the purpose for a considerable amount of time without needing to be replaced.
2. Easy Installation
Being relatively lightweight, aluminium windows are easier to install compared to UPVC and some other window types. This can help save some money as one does not have to hire the services of an expert. Most importantly, it can help minimize the chances of mistakes or errors in installation, in turn ensuring that there’s no damage to the windows as well as your home, and that they also last longer.
The material is 100% recyclable and therefore friendly to our environment. In general, the process of reusing melted aluminium consumes only about 5% of the amount of energy that would be required to remove the metal from the ore. Further, less material is wasted compared to the process of extracting virgin aluminium material. That way, energy is saved, and most importantly, there’s less impact on the environment.
4. Cost Effective
These types of windows are not only cheaper but are also the standard with the majority of mainstream builders of a range of buildings. This means that it’s cheaper, easier and quicker to get replacements parts or other needed glass repairs. In fact, most local window firms can repair these windows.
5. Little Maintenance
Another top benefit of aluminium windows is that they require little maintenance, if any. If necessary, you can paint your windows or coat with a finish to match your décor. This can stand up severe conditions and elements for years without needing any repainting.
6. Wide Variety
These types of windows are available in a range of different sizes on the market. As such, you have a wide range of options to select from based on your needs.
Cons of Aluminium Windows
1. Poor Thermal Performance
Being a metal, aluminium conducts heat which can in turn increase the U-value of the window unit. This particular feature makes aluminium windows less ideal for hot climates as they will conduct excessive/unwanted heat via the frame, making the environment within a building very hot and unbearable. While there are certain models that come installed with a thermal break (or similar device) between the outside & inside aluminium, their overall thermal performance is poor compared to UPVC.
2. Prone To Condensation
In very cold climates, the material can become cold to the point that it allows condensation and/or frost to form especially on the inside surfaces. What this means is that you need to wipe them each and every cold morning in order to minimize the risk of mould as well as water damage to your curtains, blinds or even paintwork. If this is not done, costly damage might occur. It’s important to note that this problem has been given attention over the years by various manufactures, but the cheaper models will often have the issue.
Pros and Cons of UPVC Windows
Various Pros of UPVC
1. Low Cost
In general, UPVC costs significantly less aluminium, so it’s little surprise that it’s often a popular choice for people who prioritize cost when making a buying decision. Despite its low cost, it can serve the purpose almost equally as the metal.
2. Insulating Abilities
The material is known for its strong insulation abilities, and as such may be more energy-efficient than metals. So, by installing UPVC windows or doors, you will have a highly energy-efficient home. They will keep the cold out & the warmth in. This makes them ideal especially for cold climates.
3. No Warping
UPVC windows will keep their original structure and shape up to the end of their lifespan. This is because of their strong resistant abilities.
4. Improved Security
Being resilient and very robust, the material is reliable & trustworthy with regards to matters security. Their frames are built to the highest hardness which makes them very difficult to cut, breakthrough or damage.
5. Low Maintenance
Another advantage of UPVC windows is they are quite easy to maintain. One doesn’t need to spend significant amount of time cleaning things up. In fact, a simple wipe with a warm, damp piece of cloth is enough to make them clean and sparkling again.
Cons of UPVC
1. Less Visually Appealing
One of the major shortcomings of UPVC windows is that they have less aesthetic value. Its simple, white plastic appearance can be far from attractive , and many people consider the frames to look unstylish especially when compared to aluminium. Although different colours are now available thanks to some larger manufactures, the material may not be ideal when replacing especially if you’re trying to maintain the character of your home.
2. Becomes Brittle
These windows may become brittle with time and lose their original colour. They tend to become murkier shades of what they once were and will completely break down to a point where they are unfixable. The only option is to replace the whole unit instead of trying to repair it.
3. Size Limitations
Buyers may have less variety to choose from in terms of size. UPVC products are also less customizable compared to aluminium windows, meaning that you have to carefully select a model that fits with your decor. However, they offer extra options that are not in aluminium including French windows.
Finding the right type of window for your replacement or installation project should not be as daunting as it may seem. By considering the merits and demerits of different options, you can be able to find and buy the best type for your needs.