How to choose aluminium frame windows

Aluminium frame windows have become really popular in the last decade, with many modern renovations replacing old upvc windows with on trend aluminium windows. 

With so many things to look out for when choosing your new aluminium frame windows, we put together a simple guide to help you along the way!

Aluminium frame windows by IQ Glass

So what are the benefits of aluminium frame windows?

Aluminium is known for being strong, so narrow frames won't sag and can support a large panel of glass, which will increase sitelines and improve the view outdoors. This look is a popular choice for modern homes designed by architects.

One of the biggest benefits of aluminium frame windows is that they require little to no maintenance - you don't need to repaint them as you would with wood or they don't need to be cleaned like upvc does; they are extremely resistant to rust, moisture and fire.

Aluminium frame windows are extremely durable and can withstand harsh weather, they are such a popular choice for homes in coastal areas.

With slim frames and larger panes of glass, aluminium frames are energy efficient and should keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer. Aluminium was long thought to be less energy efficient than timber, however thermally broken technology in the frames has greatly increased the energy efficiency.

Aluminium is also an environmentally friendly option as it's sustainable and can be recycled when the windows are being replaced. 

Aluminium frame windows by Home Hub Group

What are the options in colour for aluminium frame windows?

Anthracite grey aluminium windows have long been the most popular choice and often the standard finish offered by window manufacturers, as well as white and black. However, the beauty of aluminium windows are that they are powder coated, so you can finish you aluminium frame windows in any RAL colour available. The options also extend to wood finish, matt or gloss choice. 

So go for anthracite grey or black aluminium windows for a super modern look, or a light green or beige to create a more traditional look.


What are the aluminium window design options?

Aluminium windows are popular in the standard casement style as well as sash style of frames. Gable windows are popular to give a really modern look and allow more light to flood in, particularly with the slim aluminium frames. Crittall style windows are also so popular right now, perfect in period properties.

One of the benefits of aluminium is that it is flexible and can be made to fit any shape, so you can get a bespoke window made to fit your home with a wide expanse of glass for an ultra modern look.

Aluminium frame windows by Massimmo Sky

How can I be sure of the quality of the aluminium windows?

As many of the window companies supply products from window manufacturers, then you can ask who the windows are made by. The most popular manufacturers in the UK include Origins and Schuco, although there are many other great manufacturers to choose from.

Other firms will choose to manufacture them in-house, just make sure you check the grade of the aluminium and that they are made from prime billets rather than scrap metal.


How do I choose my aluminium frame windows?

Firstly make sure you get three manufacturers to quote for your new aluminium framed windows. Then you need to consider the following:

1. What is the lead time?

Typically, aluminium frames windows can be manufactured in 6-8 weeks, so make sure you give the window manufacturer enough of a lead time so you don't have to pay more to get them express manufactured.

2. What guarantee do the aluminium frame windows have?

Look to buy from a manufacturer that will offer you a guarantee of around 20 years or more, just in case you should have an issue. Confirm the firm guarantees the windows if you have them installed by a third party.

3. What does the cost include?

Make sure that you get the quote for exactly what you want, so you can compare it across all of the quotes you receive. This would include non standard colours and finishes, locks, handles, glazing options (if you want double or triple). 

Also ask for the quote to include the cost of the fitting should you wish the window company to do this for you.

4. How secure are they?

Look out for the Secured by Design accreditation and whether the windows have been thoroughly tested to meet the security requirements of up to PAS 24.

5. Who will fit them?

Most window companies will fit your aluminium frame windows. However, you can also choose to go with an accredited fitter. Just make sure that you receive a FENSA certificate or that the fitting has been approved by building regulations.

6. What are the U-values?

Choose a window with as low Uw value as possible (it should be below 1.6W/m2K) - the lower the Uw value, the more thermally insulating. Ask for the Uw rather than the Ug. The Ug is the glass only where the Uw is the whole window unit. Many companies will quote the Ug.

Make sure the aluminium frame is fully thermally broken, this means there is a non-conductive material through the centre of the frame that separates the frame touching the cold outdoors from the internal frame

Published: July 2, 2019

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