Top Problems with Vinyl Replacement Windows

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When shopping for new windows, one of the first things to think about is the window frame material. Popular options for replacement windows in Carlsbad, CA include wood, aluminum, fiberglass, and vinyl—with vinyl being one of the most popular. Vinyl windows come with several benefits at the most affordable price. But still, there are some common problems that raise concerns for homeowners. Here is what you need to know about vinyl windows and the common problems to watch for.


Seal Failure

Vinyl is not as rigid as other window materials. It expands and contacts seven times as much as the window glazing, and the discrepancy can put a lot of strain on window seals. The problem is even more likely on larger window installations. That said, this is only a major concern in areas with extreme and rapid temperature fluctuations. Moderate temperature fluctuations allow the materials time to expand and contract so the seals can remain intact.



Vinyl windows will begin to soften and distort if temperatures reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit. When vinyl windows warp they start to sag and become impossible to open and close. In some areas, it is not unfeasible for temperatures between the glazing and curtains to reach 165 degrees, but it isn’t common. And high-quality vinyl can usually withstand warping for a minimum of ten years. So while it may be something to watch for in warmer climates, it is not a major concern.


Improper Maintenance

Vinyl windows do not rust, rot, fade, or scratch. As such, they do not require much in the way of maintenance. But do not mistake low-maintenance for no maintenance. It is still important to routinely inspect, clean, and maintain vinyl windows to keep them looking new and in good repair. When cleaning it is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and avoid using harsh chemicals, abrasives, and power washers on your new windows. Mild detergent, water, and a soft cloth are usually the only tools required for proper cleaning.


Stripped Cranks

Window cranks work to open and close awning and casement windows. But many homeowners often overtighten the cranks, thinking it will result in a tighter seal. What they do not realize is the locks and latches are what pull the sash tight against the frame. And tightening the window too much can strip the crank. This is a common problem on vinyl windows and something to avoid.

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Less Viewing Area

Another common problem with vinyl windows is the loss of the viewing area. Compared to other frame materials, vinyl window frames are a bit wider. And while the difference may not be noticeable on larger windows, it can make a significant impact on smaller openings. The loss is something to make note of if you would like a better view and more daylight from your new windows.


It is true, not all vinyl replacement windows in Carlsbad, CA are created equal. Higher quality material from a reliable manufacturer will hold up better, provide more insulation, and last longer than other products. For more information about vinyl windows contact our experts at Pelican Replacement Windows.

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