Choosing the right windows and doors for your home may not be an open-and-shut experience. But it doesn’t have to be a backbreaking chore either.
Thorough knowledge of options in materials and price levels will help any owner create a stylish and sturdy improvement to the home.
Here’s a guide to help homeowners navigate the common types of doors and windows available and how to get them installed quickly and affordable.
Before selecting new door and window units, it’s necessary to know why the improvements are being made.
Are the windows cracked? Are the doors tough to open or close? Improving them may be as simple as replacing a pane or door panel. Even if an entire door or window unit needs replacing, a homeowner doesn’t have to break the bank if the goal is limited to replacing worn parts.
If the goal is to increase home security, a homeowner might want to pay extra for door and window units that can stand up to abuse, regardless of who or what is dishing it out.
If the goal is an esoteric improvement, a homeowner should plan to spend more for top-of-the-line materials.
It’s possible to find units that can address more than one of these goals. Homeowners should have at least one primary goal in mind before a search, however; doing so will make it much easier to find the right unit.
After determining the reason for the improvement, it’s time to research materials.
The most popular types of window frame materials on the market today are vinyl, wood and composite.
Vinyl frames are durable, energy efficient, easy to maintain and economical. Vinyl is a good choice for homeowners seeking to keep out the elements and is best for more functional window styles.
Wood frames are energy efficient but offer a more traditional look. Wood is best for classic styles, which boost a home’s overall value. Wood is the most expensive material and requires the most maintenance.
Composite frames are a mixture of vinyl and wood. It is both durable and attractive.
Doors come in three types of materials as well: wood, fiberglass and steel.
Wood doors are heavy and durable, usually made from excellent hardwoods or pine. Wood’s classic look is the best choice for traditional-style homes. It can be costly.
Fiberglass doors are durable, energy efficient and they can be painted to match a home’s color. Fiberglass is in the middle price range.
Steel doors are the best choice for weather protection and are the best choice for security. Steel is usually the most affordable style.
Making the improvements
After choosing materials and styles, a homeowner must decide on installation. Before hiring an independent installer, make sure the firm is licensed and insured.
Door and window unit retailers often offer installation service, at extra cost.