Are you looking for a contractor?

Submit our quick form and get quotes now!

Table of Contents

Different Types of Window Frames

Different Types of Window Frames

Interior renovationsDifferent Types of Window Frames

Besides opening up to the outside world, windows in a home also help maintain that precious warmth we so desperately crave during the winter months. When it is time to replace them, it is also important to consider the appropriate type of framing that will both meet your aesthetic and thermal needs.

So what are the available options and what are their respective pros and cons?

Choosing a Window Frame: Available Options


To this day, aluminum window frames are consistently a popular choice for a variety of reasons. First of all, aluminum window frames are as easy to maintain as they are to install. Although aluminum is a relatively light material, it is still quite durable. Moreover, its resistance to corrosion makes for a material that will withstand the test of time.

As for its impact on the environment, aluminum window frames are usually recyclable. Nevertheless, keep in mind that the energy required to manufacture these is quite high, which may not please consumers concerned about the environmental impact of their choice.

Aluminum frames are less energy efficient when compared to PVC frames, and because of the conductivity, this material will get very cold in the winter, which can result in frost build-up on the inner surface of the window.  In case of damage, it will be necessary to replace the entire window frame.

Just a quick tip, it is usually best to choose a window frame model that has a thermal break to ensure a good level of insulation.


wood window frame_different types of window frames

Wood has always been known for its aesthetic qualities. Likewise, this material is available in a wide variety of finishes, making it a particularly versatile option.

Obviously, a wood window frame is a perfect choice when it comes to a heritage home. Despite the focus on the aesthetic aspect and the overall charm of this type of frame, wood requires maintenance in order to avoid premature deterioration. Applying a coat of stain or paint is a must to protect the wood from humidity. However, wood will not become cold to the touch like aluminum, thus avoiding the possibility of frost build-up or condensation forming on the glass.

As for pricing, wood costs twice as much as PVC, but durability-wise, it is much more reliable, as long as the necessary precautions are taken to maintain and preserve the material over time. Lastly, note that the wood frames have good insulating properties.

Looking for tips on how to maintain your wood window frames? Check out our article on the subject.

PVC Frames

black window frame_different types of window frames

First and foremost, PVC window frames offer the best quality-price ratio. However, it should be noted that prices may vary depending on the colour of the chosen frame.

Aside from this cost-effective advantage, this type of window frame is extremely resistant to insects, corrosion, and moisture. Given the hollow chambers in their internal structure, PVC frames are not subject to condensation problems. This is an advantage over aluminum frames, which are highly susceptible to condensation.

Interestingly enough, it is possible to opt for faux wood PVC frames and even select two colours for the frame (different interior and exterior colours). Moreover, a PVC window frame requires little maintenance and its performance in terms of insulation is adequate.

As for the cons, with PVC window frames, the first thing to note is that over time, the white material will eventually turn yellow as a result of direct sun exposure. UV rays will cause the material to gradually break down into very fine particles, which are harmful to one's health. The window frame may bend slightly if exposed to large temperature variations.

Next, it should be noted that it is difficult to repair and recycle PVC frames. In the event of damage, the entire frame will need to be replaced. Lastly, know this type of material is not as durable as the other options previously mentioned. Also, it is not recommended for bay window use.

Looking for an overview of the different types of windows currently available on the market? Check out our Guide to Different Types of Windows.

Mixed-Frame Windows

Did you know that it is actually possible to choose mixed-frame windows, therefore made from two different materials? In fact, some homeowners turn to wood and aluminum frames or a combination of wood and PVC. Why is that?

Well, aluminum and wood frames are very durable, all the while preserving the beauty and charm of the wood. As far as the PVC and aluminum frame combo, it is valued for its outstanding durability and low maintenance.

Types of Window Frames



1) Aluminum

  • Easy to install
  • Low maintenance
  • Durable
  • Good rust resistance
  • Recyclable

  • Requires lots of resources to manufacture
  • Less energy-efficient than PVC frames
  • Gets cold during winter
  • Must be replaced when damaged

2) Wood 

  • Aesthetically pleasing
  • Available in various finishes
  • Durable
  • Good insulating properties

  • Requires maintenance to preserve the durability
  • More expensive than PVC frames

3) PVC

  • Offers good quality-price
  • Good resistance to insects, corrosion, and humidity
  • Durable
  • Good insulating properties
  • Not susceptible to condensation issues
  • Low maintenance

  • Yellows as a result of direct sun exposure
  • May warp with temperature variations 
  • Material decay releases fine particles into the air
  • Hard to repair and recycle
  • Less durable than other types of frames

Time to replace your windows? Check out our article How to Know When to Replace Your Windows for more information!

Get 3 renovation quotes for your window project can help you get quotes for your door and windows project. By submitting your project, we’ll put you in contact with top-rated contractors. Fill in the form on the homepage (it only takes a few minutes), and you will get estimates from trusted professionals.

Dial 1-844 828-1588 to speak with one of our customer service representatives.

Get 3 free quotes for your project!

Submit a project and get 3 free quotes!

Last modified 2023-11-07

List of sources

Get 3 free quotes for your project!

Submit a project and get 3 free quotes!

Looking for something else?

Table of contents

Get 3 free quotes for your project!

Submit a project and get 3 free quotes!

Are you a contractor?

Join our network and receive real leads!

Download the price guide for renovations

We’ll be emailing you the latest market price guide for renovations.

Related articles

The latest industry news, interviews, technologies, and resources.

5 min read • 07 Nov 2023

4 Ways to Conserve Water

Many would love to believe that living on this earth means we have access to an endless supply of water. Of course. If you’re conscious and aware of our environmental impact, you’d know that this isn’t the case. Globally, the average household is the smallest consumer of water, yet each home still has a large impact. Finding ways to reduce water usage in your home is an excellent strategy for enacting environmental change while saving some much-needed cash on your electricity bills.

7 min read

Karine Dutemple • 07 Nov 2023

10 Amazing Before and After House Flips

Do you have lots of energy to spare and are thinking about buying a house to flip it? Take a look at these few examples of flips to find ideas for this large-scale project!

4 min read

Amanda Harvey • 11 Mar 2024

What is Self-Cleaning Glass?

Technology is being used to make daily existence more convenient. From self-driving cars to personal handheld computers to augmented reality, the technological possibilities of the world today seem endless. Thus, self-cleaning glass doesn’t fall too far off the map! A glass that cleans itself could save the homeowner countless time, energy and money.

6 min read • 07 Nov 2023

How to Paint Parking Lot Lines According to Regulations

Are you the proud owner or manager of a condo tower, institution, or business, and are mandated to create a safe parking space? Your priorities are thus to maximize the available space while still complying with the established regulations as well as the peculiar needs of users. Whether you intend on marking the area yourself or hiring a specialist in the matter, it’s still important to follow some specific guidelines!

7 min read • 07 Nov 2023

How to Prepare for a House Painting Project

Need a bit of advice on how to get started on your house painting project? We met with Antoine LeBouc, one of our painting contractors, to give out a few of his best tips. To check out the video (in French with English subtitles), click here!

Looking for a contractor?

Submit a project and get 3 free quotes now!