Vinyl Vs Fibreglass: Which Is Better For You?

  • Canglow
  • January 23, 2017
  • Fiberglass Windows

When it comes to improving the energy efficiency of your home, one of the most common upgrades is installing new windows. Replacement windows come in a wide range of styles, materials, glazing options, and efficiency levels, plus many manufacturers offer the option for customized windows to maximize the returns on your investment.

Among the common materials used for replacement windows, vinyl and fibreglass are the most popular options for homeowners. But which one is better for you? Here are some factors to consider:

Strength

Fibreglass is about nine times stronger than vinyl; plus, it features a narrow frame that maximizes sunlight and the outside view. This does not necessarily mean that vinyl is weak. If properly framed, vinyl windows perform fairly well.

Durability

While fibreglass and vinyl are fabricated from inert materials that do not attract insects and are resistant to the elements, they are both pretty durable. But the fact that fibreglass is a stronger material gives it a 38 per cent longer lifespan than vinyl.

In addition, vinyl windows tend to expand and contract with temperature change, which causes them to warp, crack, bow, and shrink, ultimately destroying the seal between the glass and vinyl framework. Fibreglass, on the other hand, is made from resins (silica sand) and glass fibres that are better able to withstand expansion and contraction forces without losing their integrity.

Energy Efficiency

Both options are highly energy efficient. That said, vinyl windows are designed with a number of chambers that trap air and improve the insulation properties of the frame.

Eco-Friendly

Fibreglass is made from an abundant natural resource, silica sand, that consumes much less energy during fabrication of the windows compared to vinyl windows that are fabricated from a petroleum-based plastic.

Design Customization

Vinyl windows are fairly easy to manufacture to very specific measurements, and offer a high degree of flexibility during installation so you can get an exact fit. Fibreglass, on the other hand, offers a wider range of colour options and customizable features, but it is also more labour intensive during fabrication and installation due to its rigidity, plus it requires greater precision when being fitted.

Maintenance

Vinyl windows require minimal maintenance, as they do not require painting once installed. Their corners are also welded, which reduces the risk of air leaks around the sash and frame, allowing them to maintain their efficiency for longer. But if worn or damaged, vinyl cannot be repaired; it has to replaced. Fibreglass, on the other hand, will need to be repainted, sometimes as soon as it is installed, in case the paint scratched or chipped during installation.

Verdict

Many homeowners prefer fibreglass windows for the obvious reasons – strength, durability, ability to withstand the elements, more glass real estate to let in more light, more colour options, etc. And while it costs about 10 to 30 per cent more than vinyl, a home with fibreglass windows tends to have a higher resale value than one with vinyl windows.

Recent Posts

conservatory
Everything You Need To Know About Conservatory Design

When it comes to conservatory design, a lot of people tend to bail out because of how significant and complex the entire process is. And to be honest, a conservatory is quite significant indeed. It costs a decent amount of money, it takes lots of time to build, and it of course is quite an […]

Read More
Everything You Need To Know About Draft Proofing Windows

Canadian winters are really tough. One second it looks like it might be clearing up, and the next we have snow falling faster than rain in the spring. Considering our winters get very cold, it’s very common for homeowners to simply crank up the heat. Sure, this may work, but if you don’t take draft […]

Read More
Tan
Can You Tan Through Glass? An Age-Old Question, Answered

Whether or not the answer to “can you tan through glass?” is yes or no is important, but a lot of people also want to know whether or not the sun can harm you if there’s glass in between the two of you. Frankly, UV rays can be harmful, and through direct exposure, you may […]

Read More
How Much Should I Spend On A Door Installation? Edmonton

If you don’t know what you should be paying, chances are you’re going to be overcharged. Working with contractors is like an art form. The majority will always try to overcharge, that’s just how the world works. But that doesn’t mean you have to pay what they want. If you know the prices you want […]

Read More

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *