Alongside aluminium windows, timber windows are a popular option when choosing a window frame that will give you lots of benefits and add to the style of your home.
Wooden windows are a common choice for people who own period properties. They fit into the design and don’t distract from the home’s overall beauty. Aluminium windows are more popular with homeowners looking to give their property a more contemporary look and feel.
Since both products are pricier than uPVC windows, this article takes a look at the pros and cons of timber vs aluminium windows and their price.
Read on to find out which option provides a better price-performance ratio!
Differences Between Timber Windows and Aluminium Windows
The main and most common difference is that these windows are made for different aesthetics.
Wood windows seemingly fit better for an older farm-style home. In contrast, aluminium window frames are modern and give a contemporary aesthetic to any home where they are installed. But it’s not really the beauty of window frames that we are after. Let’s go further to understand just how these materials work and what they cost.
What Is the Cost of Timber Windows?
Wooden window frames are more costly than aluminium window frames. This is a result of the number of materials used to make wooden frames. However, the cost varies significantly depending on the size of the windows, where you want them installed, and the window types you want.
They aren’t as easy to maintain as aluminium windows. They will need sanding, varnishing or a new layer of paint after some time, which can add to the cost of installing timber windows.
When comparing timber vs aluminium windows, aluminium definitely comes out on top in the maintenance department. This is because timber-framed windows are expensive to maintain over long periods.
Depending on the weather and how often you clean your windows, wooden window frames can start rotting if not maintained properly. In this case, you would have to exchange the entire window frame, which can be quite pricey.
Timber window frames are also far easier to scratch than aluminium windows, meaning any light damage may ruin the look of the window altogether.
Not treating them with the proper varnish and treatment supplies could lead to a termite infestation. If this happens, you’ll have to remove your timber-framed windows and fork out for a costly replacement – so make sure you look after them!
The best way to prevent damage to your timber windows is to re-treat them 18-24 months after installation and then again 6-8 years later.
Since timber windows can be painted in various colours to give them a natural finish, keeping their colour is costly to maintain. Depending on the number of windows that needs repainting, the expenses are as follows:
- 4-5 windows: £700-£1,750 (5-7 days)
- 8-9 windows: £1,400-£3,150 (7-9 days)
- 10-12 windows: £1,750-£4,200 (10-12 days)
- 15-18 windows: £2 600-£6,300 (12-15 days)
Other price factors include the amount of labour required. Keep in mind that each painter has a different price. On average, painters charge between £15-£22 per hour.
The old paint on the window frames would have to be burnt off, and then two coats of primer have to be put on. Once that sets, three coats of paint have to be used to repaint the window frames. This means a lot of material, i.e. a lot of money spent.
Additional Costs of Repainting Timber Windows:
A few factors affect repainting and repairing costs when you have timber wood installed:
Number of windows and the size
The more windows that need fixing, the higher the cost is going to be.
Condition of your old frames
Some window frames need to be taken out completely as they are rotten and broken. This means you have to re-install new window frames instead of just repainting them.
Some painters work with scaffolding as it is safer than using a ladder. This is an expensive hire depending on how many stories your house/apartment building has. Scaffolding can range between £500- £1,000.
Surprisingly, depending on which part of the country you are staying in, it can be costly to have your timber windows repaired and repainted. This can be because the material first needs to be shipped to where you live.
What Is the Cost of Aluminium Windows?
Let’s jump right into it: The cost of aluminium windows is cheaper than buying timber windows. They are also basically maintenance-free. This helps reduce the cost significantly in the long term.
The deciding factor of the costs involved includes the size of the aluminium window, how many windows are being installed, and if you want them with double glazing or triple glazing.
Aluminium window frames have distinct advantages in comparison to timber windows. They are energy efficient and provide insulation that traps heat in the house. This means that you will spend a lot less money on gas bills.
They are covered in powder coating, so there is no need to give them any treatments after installation. They are low-maintenance; all you need to do is clean them with a wet cloth every now and then to keep your aluminium windows looking new.
Aluminium frames do not need extra products such as varnish or spray to keep the window frames protected, dry or waterproof. And these maintenance products can become pricey over time.
Aluminium window frames are stronger and more durable than wooden window frames. They can withstand the harshest weather elements without changing shape, buckling or breaking under pressure for long periods. This means you won’t need to worry about having to spend a lot of money to have them repaired when exposed to bad weather, unlike timber frames.
Aluminium window frames can be produced thinner than wooden window frames; they do not take up much space and can be used in the smallest of areas, using minimum materials. The fewer materials used to make the aluminium frames, the cheaper it is to buy them.
What Does It Cost To Repair Aluminium Windows?
If you have to repair your aluminium windows, here’s a look at how much it would cost:
On average, fixing aluminium frames costs between £81,68 – £286,53. The factors that are included in this price are:
- window frame size: the bigger the window frame, the more materials are needed, which increases the price.
- window type: a fixed window is cheaper than a moving window.
- window quality: these are between builders grade, midgrade and then a few high-end aluminium windows. The higher the quality, the more money you will spend.
- thermal efficiency: since this is an extra feature, they add to the cost of aluminium windows cost.
Additional costs to having aluminium windows
These factors also affect the cost of repairing or replacing your aluminium windows.
- Colour: It costs £8-£20 to add colour to your clear/bare aluminium window frames.
- Glazing: the glazing options include using speciality glass, i.e. impact-resistant, having a tint, or obscure. These are all high-priced, depending on the option you choose.
- Screens: These can be added for better visibility but costs more than the standard aluminium windows.
It’s also cheaper to install new aluminium windows than to repair the existing ones. If you are able to install them yourself, it can save you between £10-£165 instead of hiring professionals.
We also have a step-by-step guide on how to fix aluminium window handles in the event that they are damaged or broken, so you can fix them without having to spend money on a professional.
Which Is Better, Wood Or Aluminium Windows?
When comparing the price of wood vs aluminium windows, the cheaper window material is aluminium. Because it is not affected by the weather as much as timber windows and does not need to be repaired or maintained as regularly.
While aluminium windows last about 40+ years, the average lifespan of wooden windows is only 6-8 years.
Aluminium windows have thermal breaks in their frames, which keep the house warm during the winter time and cool during the summer. This saves money on energy bills, as you won’t need to use air conditioners or heaters.
If you have also been asking yourself: “Are aluminium windows better than uPVC?” Check our article to get an idea of which window type would work best for you and your budget.
Which is cheaper to buy, aluminium windows or wood windows?
Aluminium windows are a lower cost when it comes to long-term purchases. They also have better value for money as they are a low-maintenance and durable option.
Do aluminium windows last longer than timber windows?
If treated properly after installation, timber windows can last a lifetime. However, should you need to replace them, they are cost-effective and easy to do so.
Are timber windows worth the investment?
Not in the long term. It costs more to maintain timber window frames as they are affected by the elements and need replacing/repairing.
Why are aluminium windows more expensive to buy?
This is the result of the cost of materials it takes to make the aluminium frames. However, they are cheaper in the long term. They don’t require maintenance in comparison to other window frames and come with a lot of other cost-saving benefits (as we already discussed).
How much does it cost to install aluminium windows?
It costs between £150-£495 to install an aluminium window depending on the size. On average, an aluminium window costs around £340.