Posted by Manny DeMelo on September 13th, 2017

Homeowners ready to purchase and install new windows will find themselves faced with a variety of options for styles, materials, and features – some of which can impact how well your windows perform.

How do you choose what will be best?

We’ve put together this guide to help you choose the new windows that will be right for your home:

1. Confirm Your Old Windows Do Need to be Replaced

Keep in mind that not all window-related problems will require full replacements. If the issue is minor or cosmetic (like a faulty piece of hardware or chipped paint), a simple repair could do the trick. More systematic challenges (rotted wood, condensation between panes, broken glass, or compromised trim) are indicators that a more complete replacement might be in order.

Repairing or replacing – which will be right for your windows?

After confirming that your windows do need to be replaced, you next need to decide between window replacements or full-frame window replacements:

  • Provided your frames and other necessary components (trim, insulation, etc.) are in a healthy state, you can choose a window replacement, which involves re-fitting your existing frames with new, custom-fitted glass panes.

Click here to read more about window replacements.

  •  A full-frame window replacement is typically the most suitable option when the entire window (frame, trim, and other components included) are in poor condition.

 Click here to learn more about full-frame window replacements.

Choosing the right approach will ensure you can fully address all issues, maximizing your home’s energy efficiency.

2. Pick the Window Style You Prefer

  • Single or double-hung windows typically have two individual sashes. Single-hung windows open from the bottom (sliding up), whereas double-hung windows can be moved either way to open from the top or bottom.
  • Casement windows have one large sash and vertical hinges, letting them swing out to open.
  • Awning windows are hinged at the top and bottom to tilt open.
  • Slider windows are designed to slide open from side to side.

3. Select Your Preferred Material for the Window Frame

The two most popular frame types are:

  • Vinyl, which requires little to no maintenance and provides excellent insulation. Vinyl window frames can typically be found in a range of colours to suit your home’s aesthetics.
  • Wood is the classic. It’s renowned for its appearance and insulating abilities, though it does require greater care to maintain. Wooden window frames will need to be periodically painted and treated to prevent moisture penetration and rot unless you add cladding to the outside, which can make upkeep easier.

Determining what’s right for you will depend on your budget and the way you want your home to look.

4. Decide on the Extras and Features You Want for Your Windows

Popular add-ons include stylish grilles, hardware, and pre-painted interior frames. These types of features are cosmetic and generally won’t impact the performance of your windows.

Make sure you keep an eye out for the extras that do matter – like multiple panes, inert gas fillings, and warm edge spacers – to ensure your windows are as energy efficient as possible.

5. Remember – Installation Matters!

Whatever style or type of window you’re having installed; remember that choosing the right installer makes a big difference. A poor installation will lead to unexpected problems and costs for homeowners. High-quality, well installed windows will provide better results for you over the long run.

Focus on identifying experienced, professional home contractors who will be able to provide the superior workmanship that will keep your windows looking and performing their best for years to come.


At Quality Exteriors, we’re serious about windows. Our experienced full-service contractors are committed to helping you find the windows that will suit your home and installing them with precision and pride. Get in touch with us today to schedule a free in-home consultation!

Serving homeowners in St. Catharines, Niagara, Hamilton, Burlington, and Oakville.

Like this? You might also like:

Manny DeMelo

About Manny DeMelo

Manny DeMelo is the CEO and Owner of Quality Exterior Systems. His extensive knowledge in construction, gained through over 20 years in the industry, has made him an excellent mentor as well as an expert in his work.