Replacement windows are a popular home improvement project. In many cases, the homeowner would like to get rid of outdated and non-insulating windows that came with the house built before energy-efficient options were available. In some cases, however, even modern windows can become candidates for replacement. One common problem is warping.
What Materials Warp?
The two most common window frame materials are wood and vinyl. Wood offers that timeless and classy look that many homeowners desire. Vinyl, on the other hand, is PVC or polyvinyl chloride plastic that became an alternative to wood and aluminum in the 1950s.
While wood is a favorite and vinyl is an energy-efficient alternative, these materials both have their own weaknesses. One of the weaknesses they share is warping.
Why Do Windows Warp?
There are two major reasons why wood and vinyl warp: exposure to excessive heat, and mishandling. Some other factors may contribute to these reasons. In areas that experience excessive heat, for example, there is a higher chance of warping in windows. This is truer if the windows are south-facing. If the wood or vinyl frame is black, it attracts even more heat. An awning or a casement window may have this problem if the material is wood or vinyl.
The more common reason for warping, however, is misuse. When you close the window and overtighten it, then the window is exposed to excessive heat during the day, the pressure that builds up can make the window bend. When a bent window cools down, it will never go back to its original form. As for wood, exposure to moisture and intense heat can lead to deformation as the material expands and contracts.
What Can I Do to Prevent Warping?
You can avoid overtightening the lock on your windows, but there is no assurance that a wood or vinyl window won’t warp. You can, however, think about replacing your windows with those made of better materials that don’t warp. A good example would be Fibrex, the proprietary material manufactured by Renewal by Andersen. Fibrex combines wood with composite so you can enjoy the best qualities of wood and vinyl minus their weaknesses, such as warping, cracking, peeling or fading. Fibrex is also more energy-efficient than either wood or vinyl.