What You Need To Know Before Replacing Your Windows
Replacing windows can have a dramatic impact on the aesthetic of your home. Newer windows are also more likely to conserve energy better, reduce outside noise, and provide better home security.
But, when it comes to choosing a window type, not only do you have to consider the material of the frame but the glass itself too. Each has different properties that can make it more suitable than others, depending on your building and usage requirements.
Here’s an overview of what to look out for when replacing your windows, including the most popular designs and types to choose from.
Signs It’s Time To Replace Your Windows
There can be many reasons for replacing the windows in your home. In some cases, it can be a lack of insulation from the natural elements outside. In other cases, you may not be happy with the look and feel of the windows compared to the rest of your home.
Here are some of the common signs that say it’s time for you to replace your windows:
- Water is seeping in when it rains
- Inadequate draught protection
- Safety concerns
- Condensation on window panes
- You have single pane glass
- You don’t like how your windows look
- To enlarge/reduce the window size
- You want to modernize your home/increase property value
Replacing Your Windows: What To Look Out For
By looking at the above points you should already have an idea of if your windows need replacing. But what’s next?
Whether you are a homeowner or working on a commercial project, it pays to do your research. You first need to ascertain what properties you need in the window which includes the frame style, design needs, and the glass type.
When considering what type of glass to get for your home, the main types of glass are laminate, float, and toughened glass.
Here is an overview of each window glass type:
Float glass is used in high rise buildings, car windshields, and solar panels. It consists of sand (60%), dolomite lime (20%), and soda sulfate (20%). It is a smooth and low-cost option for window designs.
Toughened (also known as tempered) glass is around 5x stronger than regular glass. If broken, it will shatter evenly rather than into small pieces. It is excellent for energy efficiency.
Laminate glass is a safety glass and is used in windows where there is a possibility of human impact. It has similar shatter properties to toughened glass only forms a circular pattern rather than fracturing into small pieces. It features an internal plastic layer to increase durability and safety.
Window Styles For Your Home
Now that you know the different types of glass used for windows, it’s important to also understand the different window styles that are available for your home.
Double Glazed Windows
Glass type: Float or toughened
The typical choice for windows in a residential setting is double glazed windows. Double glazed windows have a uPVC casement and feature two panes of glass. The glass is made from either float or toughened glass. Gas (usually argon) is sandwiched between each pane of glass to provide additional energy efficiency. The low cost is the most common reason for choosing double glazing over any other window type.
In an industrial setting (such as retail) double glazing isn’t suitable. Instead, float or laminate glass is preferred due to the way it shatters differently. The thick frame is quite noticeable and can disrupt the view.
Glass type: Laminate or toughened
Aluminum windows are a stylish alternative to double glazing. They are most commonly used in luxury design, especially where the homeowner wants to let in more natural light or capture the view. While aluminum windows benefit from a wide range of styles and designs, a large pane without an opening is the most popular choice.
An example is where the window covers the majority of the wall space such as in a retail setting. Aluminum windows typically use laminate or toughened glass. Both offer superior protection and laminate, in particular, is durable against breakage. That means in the event the window is broken, the laminate glass will remain in its frame rather than shattering.
In addition to aluminum windows, residential and commercial buildings often opt for aluminum doors for the same benefits.
Aluminum windows tend to be more expensive than other window types. They are not suitable for use near coastal areas due to salt in the air acting as a corrosive. However, an architectural powder coating can be applied to aluminum windows and doors. This provides long-lasting protection against the elements (averaging 25 years). The technique can also be used to customize the color of the frame too.
Ready To Replace Your Windows?
If you are in the process of replacing your windows, you need to consider what window style and glass type will best suit your needs. Safety and practicality are two important factors to also consider.
Working with your contractor to find the right windows for your home will help keep your home safe and luxurious.
Valley Windows is a manufacturer of windows and doors. Based in Melbourne, Australia they have over 35 years of experience in creating and fitting custom solutions for their clients.