Replacement Window Options – What About Aluminum, Fiberglass, Vinyl, or Wood?

Skywalker Windows and Siding

Which Replacement Windows Are Best for You?

Whether you know it’s time for a windows replacement, or whether you’re simply considering installing some new windows to give your home an updated look, we’re here to help. Choosing the right windows is important, because windows play such a significant role in determining the curb appeal of your building. In addition, experts say that legacy windows can account for anywhere between 30% to 50% of your building’s total heating and cooling energy loss. That’s a stat you really can’t afford to ignore, especially if you’re looking for ways to improve energy efficiency and save money on monthly power bills.


Window Frame Material Options

One of the first decisions you’ll need to make is to decide which type of window frame material (or materials) you prefer. There are quite a few window products on the market these days, with more being introduced all the time. Some materials have been around for centuries, while others are more recent entries into the replacement window market. Which one is right for you? Let’s start by taking a closer look at aluminum and fiberglass, and then we’ll survey the features of some other very popular window replacement frames across America.


1. Aluminum Windows

Aluminum window framing has long been valued for being relatively strong and durable. Aluminum windows came into mainstream popularity during the post-WWII era, and there are still some things about aluminum windows that are worth mentioning. Aluminum is an adaptable material, it’s fairly easy to shape and form, and it doesn’t rust. In addition, aluminum doesn’t warp or swell, and the slimmer aluminum frames allow for more visible glass pane space. Aluminum does come with a few cons to keep in mind, however. By nature, aluminum is a conductor, meaning it allows heat to penetrate and escape easier. Aluminum is also more prone to the formation of condensation, which can also lead to some corrosion.

Aluminum Windows


Having said that, aluminum windows can still be well-suited for commercial applications. The West Prime Thermal Window from West Window Corporation is designed to handle the demanding requirements of a commercial facility, while still maintaining a more pleasant residential look and feel. And the Westco series from West Window has been used in a variety of commercial, institutional, and residential facilities including schools, hotels, restaurants, condominiums, and more. Westco window products also come in a variety of fixed picture window sizes, shapes, and configurations.


2. Fiberglass Windows

The fiberglass window frame manufacturing process involves polyester resins being pulled through a heated die, and then distributed into glass strands or mats. The result is a very durable and versatile composite material comprised of both glass fibers and plastic. Fiberglass is admittedly more expensive than aluminum, but it also happens to be a much better insulator. The end result is that fiberglass windows are some of the most energy-efficient replacement window options on the market. Fiberglass windows are also known to be strong and durable in their own right, and aren’t generally susceptible to moisture threats.

Fiberglass Windows


If you’re interested in finding a good fiberglass replacement window, Pella offers several excellent fiberglass window products which Skywalker Windows & Siding can install for you in North Carolina or Virginia. These fiberglass windows hold strong against dents, bends and breaks, while still delivering some attractive aesthetic value. Fiberglass windows can be a gorgeous addition to traditional homes, modern homes, and farmhouse-style homes alike.


3. Vinyl Windows

Vinyl siding has emerged as the most popular siding material in America for a reason. Vinyl is long-lasting, is a good insulator, and is relatively easy to clean. While vinyl isn’t generally considered to be as durable as aluminum or fiberglass, it actually works very well as a window framing material. Vinyl can be produced in any number of colors and styles, and vinyl is really one of the most cost-effective materials for both windows and patio doors.

Vinyl Windows


There are quite a few things to like about vinyl as a window material. It’s versatile, can be engineered to mimic the look of wood grain, is energy-efficient, and needs little maintenance. If you’re interested in learning more about the many vinyl window options available to you, Skywalker Windows & Siding partners with several respected vinyl window manufacturers including Pella, ProVia, VinylMax, and West Window Corporation.


4. Wood Windows

Wood-framed windows have literally been in use for centuries, and natural wood remains a popular window framing choice to this day. Wood is a naturally beautiful choice, and offers a warm, organic texture that’s hard to duplicate. Wood is known to be a natural insulator, as well. The main drawbacks with wood are its high initial cost, and the fact that wood requires more regular maintenance, including the need for periodic repainting or restaining. But if you’re willing to put in the time and effort to take good care of your wood windows, they can also take good care of you.

Wood Windows


If you’re looking for a good wooden window replacement product, Pella manufactures several that are worth a look. And as preferred windows contractors for Pella, Skywalker can install any products in Pella’s Reserve, Architect Series, or Lifestyle Series.


5. Clad Windows

Many people like the look of wood and prefer the look of wood for their home interior, but are still concerned about the amount of upkeep wood windows require on the weather-exposed exterior. If you fall into this camp, then a clad window frame could be a perfect solution. What are clad windows? They’re essentially combination frames which feature real wood on the interior, while applying the reliable performance of aluminum, fiberglass, or metal on the exterior.



Is it really possible to have the best of both worlds where replacement windows are concerned? It sure is! Clad frames from Pella and other manufacturers are actually available in a number of attractive-yet-functional material combinations. If you’re interested in exploring your many available clad window frame options, just get in touch with the pros at Skywalker!



Skywalker Installs Perfect Window Replacement Solutions in Both NC & VA

Skywalker Windows & Siding is proud to partner with top American window product manufacturers, including Pella, ProVia, West Window Corporation, and VinylMax. No matter what type of window design or material you’re looking for, Skywalker can help you to get exactly what you want and need.


And Skywalker Windows & Siding does more than just offer great window products; our team also provides the best window installation services you’ll find anywhere in NC or VA! Nobody takes better care of you than Skywalker, and we’d love to get the opportunity to prove it to you.


Skywalker is one of the highest-rated, most-awarded contractors serving the NC Piedmont Triad, NC Piedmont Triangle, Lake Norman area, and southern/southwestern VA region. In addition to windows and siding replacement, we’re happy to offer many other valuable home improvement services too, including roof replacement, gutter and gutter guard installations, and new porch & deck additions. Connect with us today by calling (336) 627-5596. Get in touch with us today, and experience the Skywalker difference!

Luke Wilson

Luke Wilson

Owner - Skywalker Windows and Siding

Luke Wilson started working on roofs with his dad when he was a teenager, and eventually launched Skywalker Roofing in 2003. Skywalker operates in 5 locations across NC & VA, and now includes windows, siding, and other exterior services. Luke also hosts the popular Roofing Mythbusters series on YouTube.


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