Timber windows may either be made from softwood or hardwood. They’re a popular choice for period homes and homes in conservation areas. Both types of wood are generally well made and can reflect whatever architectural style you want to match.
What are the benefits of hardwood window frames?
Strength and Durability
Hardwood and softwood window frames can be similar in appearance. However, the softwood will deteriorate much faster than the hardwood. That is why you want to work with a sash window company that uses quality hardwoods. The best-engineered hardwood timber will last decades if not centuries. Treated wood or engineered hardwood window frames will resemble historic wood window frames, but they will resist moisture, insects and the elements. Add the right paint, and it will be nearly impervious to moisture. The windows could have modern plastic or metal pieces at the joins to prevent leaks.
Maintains Its Appearance
Hardwood windows can be treated with colourfast coatings so that the paint itself will last ten years or more. Or you can have it stained to bring out the natural grain without having to worry about it fading over time. If the paint starts to crack, fade or peel, it can be repainted with relatively little effort. Or you could change the colour of the wood at any time by applying a new stain or repainting it.
The Return on the Investment
Maintain the wood windows, and they’ll last a very long time. And that is why wood windows offer a high return on the investment. PVC windows may last for decades, but they haven’t established the same track record as wood windows.
One reason why wood windows are making a comeback is their green credentials. You probably already know that wood windows are a green building material if the wood is sourced from responsibly managed forests. These forests are replanted as wood is harvested to maintain an endless supply. And they are generally allowed to foster wildlife, too. However, the biggest reason why wood windows are becoming popular again is their thermal efficiency. Wood is a great, natural insulator. And you can combine modern hardwood windows with double or triple-pane windows. This allows you to enjoy a historic wood window without having an insane electric or gas heating bill.
Better yet, modern wood windows have tight fits, minimizing air leakage. This makes modern wood windows the best insulators on the market today, far better than steel or aluminium window frames. And you can have the windows made with other modern features, too, like secure locking mechanisms or sound-dampening glass. On the other hand, wood windows do a decent job at muffling outdoor noises all by themselves.
One benefit of wood windows you may not know about is their relative stability. Wood windows hardly expand or contract when exposed to temperature changes. This eliminates the creaking sounds from other windows that nightly and seasonal changes can cause. And it reduces the risk of new gaps and cracks forming between the window and the wall. That stability also means wood windows are the only affordable, reliable choice for unusual window shapes like half-moon windows.