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What Is The Best Window Frame Material?

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What Is The Best Window Frame Material?

With so many options available on today’s market, finding the perfect window type for your Houston home can be challenging. But don’t fret; we can get you pointed in the right direction soon enough!

Energy-efficient replacement windows can make a huge difference in any home. Even if your primary reason for upgrading your windows is just to improve appearance—you still end up with some other great benefits as well, which is why it’s so important to make sure you select the best window type for your home.

If your goal is to improve energy efficiency, your options these days are more varied than ever.

Here, we go over everything you need to know about selecting windows for your home, so be sure to take note.Four different replacement window types

Modern Technology for Modern Performance

Modern window frames offer energy efficiency at levels that were unheard of 40 years ago—and window technology is still improving. When you buy replacement windows in Houston, you can expect even the low-budget models to reduce air infiltration and leakage down to immeasurable numbers.

When you opt for advanced glazings, you can shave up to nearly 42% on heating and cooling expenses. Not only that, window manufacturing processes have made additional features easily attainable for custom design and performance.

Double-hung windows, storm windows, and many other window types can all be completely customized to meet your needs now that manufacturers offer more advancements in materials, processes, machinery, and installation options.

Thankfully, we’ve way past the old process that involved ripping out the old window and installing an identical replacement. Now, you can remove your old windows and upgrade to a more custom style and performance.

Choosing The Right Window Type for Your Home Is Crucial

Once you are ready to replace your windows, you’ll need to decide on a window type. Modern window frames come in various material options, including vinyl, aluminum, composite, traditional wood, wood-clad, etc.

The critical question to ask yourself is, “What am I looking for in a window?” Once you’ve answered that question, you can determine what window type will best meet your needs.

Here are 3 Factors to Consider Before Selecting Your Window Material:

Climate – Where you live and the weather in that area will significantly impact what window material will best suit your home. For example, if you have a beach house in a sub-tropical climate—wood windows can be very fickle in high humidity and require even more maintenance. Vinyl, on the other hand, is very durable in that type of environment.

Architectural Style – The style of your home will also play a role in the window material you choose, especially if you live in a historic home. For example, in a Victorian-era house, vinyl windows would stick out like a sore thumb with all of the wood siding and intricate molding details. However, wood is a perfect frame material in this case.

Budget – Your budget is also crucial to consider, as costs vary by quite a bit from one window type to another. For example, while you may prefer the traditional look of wood—it is an expensive natural resource material. Vinyl, on the other hand, is much more budget-friendly and even offers the added perk of being low maintenance.

Popular Window Types & Material Options

Now that we’ve discussed choosing a window that fits your needs let’s review the available material options and the unique characteristics of each. From there, you should be able to hone in on your decision confidently.


Vinyl window frames are slowly becoming the dominant window type due to their affordability, superior insulator qualities, and relatively low maintenance requirements.

Vinyl window frames can be built to fit any size opening, with limitless color options and various performance-enhancing features.

When choosing vinyl frames, look for uniform color throughout the frame. Joints should be heat-welded rather than fastened or screwed together. Also, keep in mind turnaround time on custom ordered vinyl windows—it can be from two to six weeks depending on who you order from.


Aluminum window frames offer the same affordability and low maintenance as vinyl windows but add increased durability—they won’t warp in the Texas heat and can withstand Houston’s tropical storms.

If you decide to go with aluminum windows, make sure you choose a model with a thermal barrier in the frame. The thermal barrier is a strip of rubber or plastic that separates the inside and outside of the frame to help limit heat conduction and condensation.

Inexpensiveness, strength, and low maintenance are the common draws of aluminum frames.


Wood-clad window frames combine the durability of other materials with the exceptional insulation value of wood. Wood-clad window performance is accomplished by constructing the exterior portion of the frame from strong, low-maintenance materials while the interior is made with wood.

The result is a low maintenance frame with a high insulation value. Proper installation is crucial for longevity as shoddy workmanship can result in water damage to the wood interior.


Composite window frames are composed of a mixture of wood byproducts and plastic. In appearance, they come close to their wood counterparts. Performance-wise, they are structurally sound, effective insulators, and low maintenance.

Comparatively speaking, they match or surpass the thermal resistance of wood. Though they are made up of wood byproducts, composite frames handle moisture well in sub-tropical climate zones like Houston.


Wood window frames are aesthetically pleasing and are highly effective insulators. Wood window frames help keep the cool air inside while resisting the heat outside and vice versa during the winter months.

It’s important to remember that solid wood windows do require a lot of maintenance as they expand and contract in response to the weather. So sanding, painting, sealing, and maintaining the frames will be necessary.

If you are looking for a window frame that you can install and forget about— wood is not your ideal option.

Choose The Best Window Type for Your Home & We can Build It

Once you decide on the best window type for your home, the next step is to find a reputable window company.

Superior Window Company has been the leader in high-quality replacement windows in Houston for years.

All of our replacement windows are made right here in Texas and are specifically designed to meet the needs of homes within the Texas climate.

Give us a call to schedule your free consultation today!