When it comes to choosing building materials for your construction, you have to consider their pros and cons before making your decision. For instance, timber framed windows are a much better option than aluminium framed windows for several reasons. Though hardwood windows are typically seen as pricey, these are, in fact, cheaper than aluminium windows of similar performance.
Here are some of the benefits of using timber, specifically for window and door frames.
Low price is often cited as a reason for choosing aluminium over timber for window and door frames. A low performance aluminium window will be cheaper than a hardwood window; additionally, its minimal maintenance requirement makes it seemingly a better choice for those looking to save on costs. However, an aluminium window with the same energy rating as a timber window will actually cost more. Timber frame windows deliver energy savings, increasing the home’s overall performance.
Timber is a highly energy efficient building material thanks to its natural insulating properties. The savings one can achieve with timber through lower energy consumption will more than compensate for the initial cost of the material. Aluminium, on the other hand, is not as energy efficient as timber. Higher quality insulated aluminium windows are typically more expensive than timber, thereby losing out on any savings.
Timber scores over aluminium in aesthetic appeal and adds value to the home. Timber is also a great way to integrate nature into the home environment. Unlike aluminium, timber has the ability to add warmth and depth to the home.
Sustainability and longevity
At a time when sustainable design is prioritised in most builds, using aluminium in construction could reduce the home’s green credentials. While aluminium is beginning to be recycled, it is not a renewable resource; besides, aluminium production creates 85 times more greenhouse gas emissions when compared to timber. On the other hand, plantation-grown trees from where timber is sourced act as a long-term storage for carbon. Through sustainable forest management, more trees are planted to replace the trees harvested, thereby increasing carbon sequestration. Timber’s natural insulating properties reduce excessive use of heating or cooling in the home.
Timber’s maintenance requirement is often perceived as a negative; however, in sheltered positions, a timber window requires similar maintenance to an aluminium alternative. Even when fully exposed to the elements, timber windows will outlast aluminium windows provided the maintenance is regular. In the event of severe degradation, timber can be restored to its original state. Conversely, aluminium can corrode over time, which cannot be corrected and will need replacement, adding to costs and greenhouse gas emissions.
Keeping all of these factors in mind, timber can actually work out to be far more cost-effective over the long term in comparison with aluminium. If your timber framed windows are installed correctly and maintained regularly, you’ll likely never have to replace them while you can continue to enjoy savings across energy bills. Timber also adds value to your home if you are considering selling it.