If you’re not sure how long windows last, you’re not alone. As an exterior remodeling company that specializes in window replacement, our greater Indianapolis customers ask us about the longevity of windows all the time. And the answer isn’t always clear-cut! Many factors influence how long windows last, including the window materials, the weather they’ve endured, and whether they’ve spent lots of time in the sun.
If you’re interested in replacing your windows, or you’re wondering how long your current windows will last, read on. We’ve broken down how long you can expect each type of window to last, the signs it’s time for a window replacement job, and whether you need to replace them all at once.
How long do vinyl windows usually last?
Answer: Vinyl windows last for 5-10 years.
Vinyl windows aren’t the best option for Indianapolis homeowners. Vinyl windows are thermoplastic, which means they expand and contract with changing temperatures. You can expect these windows to last between 5-10 years. Vinyl windows are a great option for folks on a budget, commanding a lower price tag than wood and fiberglass. Vinyl can be a quick and relatively inexpensive replacement option.
Bear in mind that the lifespan of your vinyl windows will be affected by how much time they spend in the sun. Heat speeds up window deterioration, so windows on a sunnier side of the house won’t last as long as ones that spend more time in the shade. If vinyl windows are properly maintained, you can trust them to last for years with little maintenance.
How long do wood windows usually last?
Answer: Wood and Wood-Clad windows last 15-30 years.
If you invest in wood windows, you can anticipate a 15-30 year life expectancy. The problem with wood windows is that they collect and absorb moisture, which leads to warping, rotting, and even mold. With a yearly state average of 72% humidity, wood windows in Indiana will accumulate moisture very quickly.
Wood and wood-clad windows are a great combination of looks, cost, and lifespan. These windows do require some maintenance with touching up, but can be an easy change to your curb appeal with a new coat of paint or stain. Wood windows are a quality window option to consider.
How long do fiberglass windows usually last?
Answer: Fiberglass windows can last for 50+ years.
Fiberglass is the hardiest window material on the market. Although fiberglass windows are more expensive than vinyl, don’t balk at the price tag. You can expect fiberglass windows to last over 50 years!
Fiberglass is so durable because its glass base holds up throughout extreme temperatures. Wood and vinyl expand and contract throughout the changing seasons as the temperature rises and falls. Fiberglass remains stable.
Another point for fiberglass windows: they’re the most energy-efficient windows you can buy, and increase your home’s insulation capacity. Who wouldn’t appreciate a lower energy bill each month?
If you’re looking to invest in your home fiberglass windows are the way to go. With the typical fiberglass window lasting over 50 years, this investment pays off in the long run.
Is it time to replace my windows?
If you suspect that you’re due for a window replacement, an inspection can help you make a decision. Many homeowners aren’t sure how old their windows are, especially if their house was previously owned by someone else. If you find the following issues with your windows, it’s probably time to replace your windows.
Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Windows
- Drafts: If your home has felt a little drafty lately, it’s time to replace your windows. A little breeze isn’t just a minor inconvenience; it’s a sign that the air you’re paying to heat and cool is escaping your home. If your windows aren’t properly insulating your home, you’ll pay a higher energy bill each month. Time to replace!
- Cracked Windowpanes or Frames: Cracked windowpanes are an obvious sign that your windows need to be replaced, but don’t overlook your frames, either. If you catch a small crack early, you can easily fill it in. Lots of cracks are a sign that your windows are deteriorating as they accumulate moisture.
- Condensation: If you notice condensation in between your windowpanes, that means your seals are fading fast- and unfortunately, it’s not an easy fix. Seals have to be airtight to prevent heat transfer. If the seal breaks, your window will quickly collect moisture- that’s when you see condensation- and rapidly decay.
- Hot (Or Cold!) to the Touch: If your windows are hot to the touch in the summer and cold to the touch in the winter, it means they’re failing to insulate your home. Time to call a window replacement contractor.
Will I Need to Replace My Windows All At Once?
You don’t have to replace all of your windows at the same time, although there are benefits to doing so. If the windows on only one side of your house- probably the sunny side- are deteriorating, you may be able to get away with only replacing those windows. For those with budget concerns, this can be a nice compromise.
If you choose to replace your windows all at once, it helps to maintain a consistent look and feel in your home. For owners of historic homes looking for windows that respect the architectural integrity of their house, this is a great option. And, if you replace all of your windows at once, you won’t have to worry about replacing them again for many years.
Replace Your Windows with UHQ
If you’re ready to replace the windows in your greater Indianapolis home, we’re here for you. We’ve replaced and repaired windows with our signature care and craftsmanship since 2014. Consider your options when it’s time to replace your windows. Go with a quality option that is worth the investment. UHQ highly recommends replacing your windows with wood, wood-clad, or fiberglass.