Window considerationsThe Clear Reality About Windows

Windows come in all shapes, sizes and colors. Their frames can be manufactured from aluminum, vinyl, fiberglass or wood. While all glass is manufactured from silicon (sand) the final product can be tinted, heat tempered and even bullet or bomb proof. Most, if not all, windows manufactured today are “dual glazed” or are made as a sealed unit of two pieces of glass with the air in the module replaced with argon gas.

So what’s the best product for my home?

Well, that depends on your budget, home’s design and insulation needs. Aluminum frames transfer heat and cold causing condensation which can be corrosive and cause damage over time. While wood frames are very elegant, they do require routine maintenance to remain sealed from destructive elements. Fiberglass is very strong but is susceptible to UV rays from the sun. Vinyl frames don’t transfer energy, are UV resistant and don’t require much maintenance. However, they require a wider frame design around the window glass in order to be structurally sound.

Window functionality, too, can make or break a room’s feel. Single or double hung windows allow you to create ambient refreshing air flow that will help save money when cooling your home. XO XOX or OX are sliding windows with at least one fixed panel. Sometimes it is nessacerry to mull a large fixed panel of glass to two double or single hung side vents in order to create air flow, but not obstruct a view.

The window’s hardware will give you a clue as to how well a window is made. Inspect the window guides and rollers, handles as well as the locking mechanisms to see how they are designed and if they are solid. If there is movement and the unit does not seem to function properly, then you might want to keep looking for another manufacturer.

Window tints can be chemically applied at the manufacturing plant. Low E is a standard treatment that drastically reduces heat transference from both the sun and an inside heating or cooling source. Reflective tints as well as obscure glass can be used for privacy when it is desired.