Window Material Options: Wood vs. Vinyl – PART III: The Verdict – Wood or Vinyl Windows?

Both wood and vinyl windows have something to offer homeowners. And because what is right depends on what your needs are, both materials have a fair shot of being the right choice. Still, there can only be one right for you and your home and you have a decision to make. What to consider? The primary aspects that a homeowner must look into when searching for replacement windows are appearance, maintenance, energy efficiency, and value.


Wood and vinyl windows both come in different styles and grades. When put side-by-side for comparison, the similar grades of wood and vinyl windows will look very alike. However, some of the best wood windows exude a distinctive look that vinyl windows may not always be able to mimic. However, the more good-looking a wood window is, the more expensive it will be.

It is also important to consider how your windows would look like years after installation. Wood may look great within the first few years, but to maintain its look, you’ll need to have them repainted. Vinyl windows, on the other hand, can maintain its color after 10 years or more.


While homeowners may understand that maintenance is crucial to keeping their windows in top shape, nobody actually likes doing it so opting for the replacement that is the easiest to maintain is the best way to go. And between wood and vinyl windows, the latter has a leg up over the other. You can always hire a professional to take care of maintaining your windows but getting replacements that are easy to care for will also save you money in the long run.

Energy Efficiency

Wood and vinyl both offer good insulation, making them energy-efficient materials. To determine which of your options will be right for you, check replacement window labels for NFRC ratings. These ratings break down performance levels specifically so you’ll get a clearer idea as to what will work best for you.


On its own, replacing windows already raises the value of your property because you are improving both its form and function. You don’t necessarily have to be looking to sell to appreciate this. Determining what will offer you more value between wood and vinyl windows is a matter of assessing what will give you more bang for your buck,while addressing your needs.

The Verdict

Wood may be a beautiful material but, on the overall, vinyl poses more benefits as a window framing material, considering all that it can do for you and your home. Not only is it comparable in appearance to wood windows but vinyl ones are also more affordable, a breeze to maintain (offering more savings in the long run!) and energy-efficient, making them a good investment to make.

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