Due to the increasing number of new homes being build in the DFW, and the high demand of existing homes needing to be renovated, there is always a common question that arises in both scenarios: “what are the best products to use when remodeling or building a home?”.
Amongst the most important materials needing to be installed or replaced on a home, are the windows. Windows provide our homes with light, warmth and beauty. They make us feel less confined, even in a small room. Most importantly, the size, material, and design of the windows play an important role in the overall structure of the house and its maintenance.
Most Homeowners, Builders and contractors have a difficult time deciding what is the best material to use for their windows, but in most cases, it comes down to these three: vinyl, wood, or steel windows in Dallas. In this article however, we will discuss the difference between the two most extremely different, and most commonly used materials used for windows.
Benefits of Steel Windows in Dallas
Steel Windows and doors in Dallas have become very popular in the design world for the last couple of years, and its no secret why- they offer a variety of beautiful designs, shapes, and finishes.
Whether you are a homeowner or a builder, you can both agree in one thing, steel doors are amazing, but let’s get the facts straight of what are the real benefits of installing steel windows in Dallas:
- Strength: Steel is the strongest material in the window and door industry. It is because of this strength that steel windows can come with very slim sightlines. They require minimal framing material needed for structural functionality and durability.
- Design: Most steel windows and doors are used in homes with modern designs, but due to their sleek lines, these are endless options of design that go well with traditional or transitional homes. They can be customized to any design or shape and can be used a solution for corner windows or full window walls and can be made in a variety of sizes.
- Durability: Due to their steel frame, they are resistant to extreme weather conditions, fire, and shifting foundation issues which is a common problem for older homes. The finish process applied on our steel windows and doors make them resistant to decay, rust or chipping. They are backed by our 10-year conditional warranty on structure and finish.
- Energy Efficiency: Steel contracts less than wood making our steel windows a stronger barrier against extreme weather conditions. They are filled with polyurethane foam a valuable form of insulation due to its thermal properties and resistance to heat flow, otherwise known as R-value. The higher the R-value, the more effective the insulation. Our steel windows also come with double pane insulated, tempered glass ranging from 5/8” to 1” overall thickness in a variety of Low E ratings. Steel can also be insulated with a thermal break, which allows for a narrower frame and higher insulation. Thermally broken steel windows and doors however, are mostly used in northern states.
- Functionality & Versatility: Steel windows can be manufactured for a variety of functionalities. They can be fixed, in-swing, out-swing, awning, or sliding. They are easily installed and repaired onsite at a low cost. They can also be refinished to a totally different color and they will still look brand new even after years of being installed. Steel windows typically 30 years or more. Operable steel windows are very easy to maneuver, they have easy use hinges and handles giving them smooth operation.
- Environmentally Friendly: Steel is a permanent material that can be infinitely recycled and is 100% recyclable without loss of quality. Steel is a durable, noncombustible, fire-resistant material.
Cons of Steel Windows in Dallas
The ugly truth, yes there is one downside to installing steel windows in Dallas – The cost. Steel windows can cost double or triple than vinyl windows. Prices depend on the project, the size of the windows, quantity and/or any special customization or function needed. Installation may also be slightly higher due to the weight of steel doors and they may require additional man power or special equipment rental.
Although steel windows in Dallas are more expensive, you have to consider the quality, functionality, and durability is much higher making it an unfair comparison.
Now that there is an understanding of why steel windows in Dallas have become so popular between builders and homeowners, lets talk about vinyl windows.
Vinyl windows have always been viewed as an inexpensive solution to be used when installing or replacing windows on homes. Although Vinyl windows may seem appealing to a builder or homeowner due to their inexpensive cost, there are many inherit problems that come with vinyl windows that will cost you or your client more money down the road. Let’s speak about the facts and disadvantages of installing vinyl windows:
- Design & Finish: Vinyl windows don’t require painting, they come in a variety of finish options, however these finishes are permanent because they can’t be painted or touched up as they can’t absorb paint, so choose your finish wisely because once installed, you are stuck with it. Additionally, you are limited in making certain shaped windows because most vinyl windows come ins standard sizes for special shaped windows. Larger vinyl windows are know for having a variety of problems due to their contraction and expansion and have to be replaced in most cases.
- Durability: Most Vinyl distributors will tell you that vinyl windows will last you for many years, this can be true, only if you live in an area where its never too hot or too cold, with little exposure to sun or moisture. Vinyl expands and contracts three times more than steel, and twice more than wood in hot or cold weather. When this happens, it causes the seal between the vinyl framework and the glass begins to fail especially with larger size windows. This may prevent your window from opening and closing properly. Contraction can also lead to warping, which can cause a poor air seal that requires periodic caulking. Additionally, this will cause the seal on the glass to break and your glass will become foggy. In most cases, you will need to replace the window completely. Most importantly, Vinyl windows are not fire resistant, and melt easily releasing toxic fumes that can be harmful.
- Energy efficiency: This excessive expansion and contraction will also increase the amount or air filtration allowing heat and cold to enter your home. This will require an increased daily use of your AC in the summer and heater in the winter causing you to have high electricity bills in addition of the cost to replace the window.
- Functionality: New vinyl windows open and close with a little effort, but over time, their operation becomes difficult. Vinyl windows require some maintenance. If the desired maintenance is not received, they may not work properly. Cleaning and lubricating vinyl windows periodically is necessary to keep them operating smoothly. Some will argue that vinyl windows can be repaired which can be true, however repairs on vinyl windows are difficult to hide because they cannot be welded on or painted on. The vinyl window frames can typically only be repaired with liquid PVC and vinyl patches which rarely match the original color.
- Not environmentally friendly: It is a fact that the process of manufacturing polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is incredibly toxic, producing a carcinogen called Dioxin. Vinyl is made through a toxic petroleum process and are harmful to the environment once they are discarded, this also means they are not recyclable.
There are many issues to consider when choosing the right material for your new windows, however, safety and quality should not be sacrificed for price. Now that you understand the downside and risk factors that come with Vinyl windows, it should be easier to decide that steel windows in Dallas, are the best choice.
Schedule a free consultation to speak to our team of steel window and door experts in Dallas.