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Understanding the Lifespan of Different Types of Replacement Windows

We know many of you want a cut-and-dried answer regarding the lifespan of replacement windows. Many homeowners want to know how long their windows will last so they can budget appropriately for a window replacement project in the future.

Approximate Lifespan of Replacement Windows

Here’s a general guideline for when you might consider replacing windows in your home.

  • Vinyl windows: 20 to 40 years
  • Wood windows: 15 to 20 years
  • Aluminum windows: 20 to 25 years
  • Fiberglass windows: 20 to 30 years
  • Composite windows: 20 to 40 years

Of course, there’s a big difference between windows lasting 15 years and those lasting 40 years. How do you get windows to last for four decades? You must choose a permanent window solution with a lifetime warranty

Also, remember that professional installation and regular maintenance play a crucial role in extending the lifespan of replacement windows. 

How To Tell It’s Time for a Window Replacement Project

Maybe your windows are between 15 and 20 years old. Does this mean that it’s time for a replacement project? Here are some signs it might be time for more modern windows.

1. You feel drafts and air leaks around your windows. 

Windows that feel drafty are no longer airtight and require an inspection to see if you need replacement windows.

2. You are using more energy to heat and cool your home. 

High energy bills will increase your home’s energy costs. Upgrading your old windows to energy efficient windows can save you money each month and reduce the strain on your HVAC system.

3. Your windows are damaged. 

Warped or cracked frames and sashes may compromise the security, structural integrity, and overall aesthetic appeal of the windows.

4. You notice condensation between panes.

Condensation between the glass panes may suggest a failed seal, which reduces insulation and energy efficiency.

Modern home with sleek, gray siding featuring large, energy-efficient replacement windows, emphasizing their contribution to the lifespan and modernization of the house's exterior.

5. Your windows don’t open, close, lock, or remain in an open position. 

If windows are difficult to open, close, or lock, it could be a sign of wear and tear, and a full window replacement could be required. 

6. You start to notice more noise pollution.

New windows will help to reduce outside noise. If you notice increased noise levels inside your home, your windows may not be providing sufficient sound insulation.

7. Your furniture fabrics are fading. 

Older windows will not offer adequate protection against UV rays, leading to faded furniture fabrics and flooring. Upgrading to newer windows with Low-E coatings can amend this issue.

8. Your windows lack curb appeal. 

If your windows look outdated or no longer match your home’s style, replacing them can enhance curb appeal and property value.

9. You still have single-pane windows. 

If your home still has single-pane windows, upgrading to double-pane may significantly improve energy efficiency.

RJW Exteriors is New Jersey’s premier window replacement company. We offer a wide range of premium windows – and an experienced crew to install them. Is it time to replace your windows or repair them? Contact RJW Exteriors. We are happy to provide valuable insights based on our more than 28 years in the window business. 

Key Takeaways

  • Windows last between 20 and 40 years – depending on the quality of the product and installation. 
  • Several signs indicate it may be time to get your windows replaced. The most obvious signs are:
    • Drafty windows
    • Damaged window frames
    • Condensation between panes 
  • Reach out to a trusted window contractor to determine if your old window needs to be replaced or repaired.