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Comparing New Construction Windows and Replacement Windows

May 31, 2023

Comparing New Construction Windows and Replacement Windows

Comparing New Construction Windows and Replacement Windows

As homeowners, regularly maintaining your home is important in preserving a beautiful and functional living space. Because windows are essential in controlling the natural lighting and ventilation of your home, you want them to perform well and look absolutely gorgeous. But like everything else in your home, windows will eventually lose their aesthetic appeal and energetic performance. When it comes to getting a new window, understanding the differences between replacement and new construction windows will help you to make an informed purchase decision.

New Construction Windows

As the name suggests, new construction windows are most commonly used when there is a “new construction” in progress. This window type is directly installed on the frame of the new home when the studs are exposed during the building phase. Because the home itself is in construction mode, homeowners can be creative in their design by choosing window shapes and sizes that best fit the image of their dream home.

While new construction windows are great for new homes, they have some major drawbacks if you are trying to use them in your home improvement project. One of the main drawbacks is that most new construction windows have a nail fin (or a thin piece of metal) that extends from the window and wraps around the window frame. The nail fin was designed to make installation easier. It enables contractors to nail the new window directly to the home’s frame, while hiding it from public eye. This means that homeowners using new construction windows for their improvement project will need to re-expose the stud, creating a labor-intensive and destructive process that is considered “mission impossible” if you have a brick or stone wall.

Replacement Windows

Alternatively, replacement windows are an excellent option for a quick home improvement project. With a tight budget and possible time constraints, replacement windows streamline your window remodeling process with efficiency and convenience most homeowners desperately crave. Sometimes referred to as retrofit windows, replacement windows are developed for the exact purpose of installing new windows without having to remove the exterior materials of the home. The trade-off for all these benefits is that replacement windows are measured to fit the existing window opening. As a result, they can only replace the actual window and cannot be reshaped or resized in any way or manner.

Making the Final Decision

New construction windows and replacement windows both offer a plethora of color and glass options to enhance the cosmetic appeal of your home. Whereas new construction windows can be designed from scratch, the customization of replacement windows is limited to finish options. When it comes to practical application, the former is nailed directly to the stud, while the latter is a great for home improvement solution for its easy installation process.

Regardless what window option you end up choosing, just realize that a perfect window needs to be made of the best materials and craftsmanship. EnergyStar rated windows, such as fiberglass windows, improve your energy efficiency, thereby aiding you in cutting down on energy costs, giving your escalating cooling cost a generous break and a life of investment return.

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