While choosing the best types of windows to install in any home, people are faced with innumerable options. Amongst this plethora of choices vinyl windows are given a lot of consideration. When vinyl windows were first manufactured, they were marketed as alternatives to wooden windows and have managed to stay relevant to date. There is a lot of speculation about whether vinyl windows have the desired quality and durability we need. On the flip side there are lot of characteristics of vinyl windows that people are really attracted to. The question of the amount of protection they offer is also something that might need clarification.
Given below are the characteristics, pros and the cons of vinyl windows that will help you make an informed decision on whether you want to buy them for your new place or whether you want to continue using the vinyl windows you have or replace them.
What Are The Characteristics Of Vinyl Windows?
It is necessary to know the characteristics of vinyl windows in order to judge its structural integrity. Vinyl windows are made from polyvinyl chloride, referred to commonly as uPVC. PVC is a form of synthetic plastic polymer and arguably one of the most desired forms of polymers today.
PVC is usually used in plumbing and other industrial applications and has niche usage in window design. PVC has versatile structural integrity. It can be either rigid or flexible. The rigid form is called RPVC. The material used to make windows is uPVC which stands for unplasticized Polyvinyl Chloride.
Conventional PVC cannot be used for doors and windows due to their chemical composition. uPVC is the preferred material as it does not consist of phthalates or BPA, rendering it environmentally safe.
What Are The Advantages Of Vinyl Windows?
The benefits of vinyl windows are very important in considering them as candidates for your home. Amongst them, the fact that the material does not fade is probably the most important benefit of all. This quality is owed to its chemical composition. All you would have to do is wipe the window with a clean cloth and dust it once in a while and it will look as good as new.
Vinyl windows also have the inherent ability to be heat resistant. Additionally, they don’t let the heat escape from within homes as well. This makes vinyl windows a good option for homes in places with extreme weather conditions and can be used all year round. This ability to regulate temperature also means that the windows are also energy efficient, saving you some money for not having to use artificial cooling or heating.
They are also practical choices in the sense that they are good insulators of noise. With the curtains or blinds drawn, the affairs of your home remain inside while you are not privy to what happens outside. The cost of maintenance is fairly low.
They last long and are durable enough to face harsh weather conditions. Vinyl windows do not crack, warp or peel when subjected to harsh sunlight. Vinyl windows also have the reputation of being environmentally friendly, termite resistant and fungi resistant.
The most exciting benefit of all is the different types of designs you have to choose from. They can adapt to almost any home and style of home décor while enhancing and supplementing your style to the next level.
What Is The Controversy With Vinyl Windows And Blocking UV Rays?
Despite these apparent benefits, people might shy away from vinyl windows under the notion that they are not UV resistant. This is because vinyl windows are often associated with ‘plastic’ which usually melts or peels off due to exposure to UV rays. UV rays from the sunlight is can damage homes, cause health concerns to people and is a contributor to rotting of furniture. UV-A, UV-B and UV-C are some the harmful types of UV rays, UV-C being the most threatening of all.
However, the notion that Vinyl windows are not UV resistant is a misconception. uPVC windows usually have a coating of certain chemicals that give it protection from UV rays. Most often, this is a coating of titanium oxide. This coating is a dual feature, it not only protects the occupants form exposure to sunlight but also gives the windows that fresh and unstained look. The coating is part of the manufacturing process, keeping in mind health concerns of users.
What Are The Basic Options I Have If I Want To Install Vinyl Windows In My Home?
- Vertical slider windows slide vertically and open vertically. They serve as a good example of energy efficient windows and an elegant design.
- On the flip side, you also have horizontal sliders that open up horizontally. They can be witnessed quite often as openings to basements.
- Casements and awnings are also good options. Casements open outward and make them interesting options as windows in multi-storey buildings. Awnings provide a compact window option for basements and attics.
- Garden Windows make rooms seem larger by extending outward. Garden windows installed in kitchens add a fancy and dreamy look if you have a nice view outside too. Given that vinyl windows are UV resistant, vinyl garden windows are also safe options from a health perspective.
- You can also explore your options by checking the different shapes and sizes that vinyl windows come in. You can customize it to fit the theme of a room, give the home an air of mystery or even use it as a design tool or inside joke.
- Bay and Bow windows are also unique designs you can check out. They project outward like garden windows, but from different angles rather than the conventional way.
Vinyl windows are wonderful options for your home and you might only encounter rare, case-to-case issues if ever. Now that the confusion regarding their ability to protect you from UV rays it is abundantly clear that they are reasonable safe options. Depending on the size of the window you can add different window treatments such as vertical or horizontal blinds, curtains, valances and even roman shades to enhance the look of the room.
Vinyl windows are also more generally affordable options. The only problem with them is the question of whether they are environment friendly. Although they are energy efficient, the manufacturing of these windows involves off-gassing which is not necessarily a sound practise from the perspective of the environment. Further, in the event of a fire, the emission of toxic fumes is a possibility. This means that the environmental friendliness of vinyl windows is a double-edged sword. Overall, they make for a solid option to buy.