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Aluminum Window Frames

Average cost range:

$310 - $655

The average cost to replace aluminum frame windows in 2022 ranges from $310 to $655 per window. However, higher-end styles of aluminum frame windows, such as bay windows, can cost more than the national average. The total installation cost will also depend on the aluminum replacement window brand you choose and local average labor costs in your area, which should average around $40 to $80 per window.

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Replacement Aluminum Window Frames

For a modern homeowner, aluminum window replacements are a great option. Aluminum window frames are durable, long-lasting, easy to maintain, and have a slim profile. Thermal breaks are strategically put into different sections of the frame for a higher level of insulation, since aluminum is an effective heat conductor. These molded sections are usually screwed or welded together. You will usually spend more on aluminum frame windows in comparison to vinyl frame windows and fiberglass frame windows. However, they are sometimes still cheaper than the architecturally appealing wooden window styles.

person replacing window

Pros and Cons of Aluminum Windows

  • Pros

    • Highly weather-resistant
    • Sleek, slim design
    • Easy to maintain
  • Cons

    • Conduct heat quickly
    • Costlier than vinyl and fiberglass frames
    • Can dent if mishandled

Some benefits of installing aluminum frame windows on your home include:

  • They will not crack, peel, or warp. Aluminum windows are one of the most durable and weather resistant window installation options you’ll come across.
  • Modern style. Due to the slim design of aluminum frames, they are a sleek, attractive option for homeowners seeking a modern look. Although it requires more maintenance later on, aluminum frames can also be painted if you ever wanted to spruce them up in the future.
  • Low maintenance. Aluminum window frames are easy to maintain and clean. Thanks to their finishing, you should not need to repaint them.

However, there are some downsides to consider before installing aluminum windows:

  • Less energy efficient. With aluminum window frames, you are going to take a hit in terms of energy efficiency even with their thermal breaks. Aluminum frame windows conduct heat much faster than other options. Therefore, heat is let into your home at a much faster rate causing your home central air conditioning system to work even harder.
  • Moderate to high cost. Aluminum frames are the second most expensive window frame type behind wooden replacement windows.
  • Can dent if mishandled. Dented aluminum frame windows are difficult to repair. They often have to be replaced completely or filled and painted to mask the dent which in turn costs more for maintenance.

Aluminum Window Repair vs. Replacement

If your home’s aluminum frame windows are already double paned, you might consider repairing them versus replacing them. It will depend on the extent of the damage you can see.

If the window is intact for the most part, assess the current condition of your aluminum window’s frame, glass, and other parts of your window as a whole. Then, you can decide on repair or replacement. This is where a reliable contractor will often come in handy to help you make the decision as to what is the best option.

As a general rule of thumb, if your aluminum window frame repair is for a single pane window, then it is often best to simply replace the entire window with a higher quality energy-efficient double pane window.

In fact, when replacing windows in states like Texas, manufacturers will only install more energy efficient aluminum windows. This is due to the fact that they transfer heat easily, making it hard to control your home’s temperature in very hot climates. Many homeowners will opt to upgrade to a higher quality window frame material such as vinyl or choose a fiberglass window replacement in order to keep their home cooler and to avoid having windows that allow for air leakage overtime.

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Aluminum Window Frames vs. Other Window Frames

While aluminum frame windows are more expensive than vinyl or fiberglass replacement windows, they hold up to weathering more effectively and are aesthetically pleasing in modern homes.

They are also less expensive and more durable than replacement wooden windows. With the addition of thermal breaks, they are much more energy efficient than the aluminum frames on the market 20 years ago.

However, their energy efficiency issues (they allow heat in very easily) are the main reason homeowners will opt to replace their windows with a different frame material. All other window frame type offer more energy efficiency to help save on long-term heating and cooling bills.

best replacement windows chart

Aluminum Window Brands

There are quite a few window brands that offer aluminum, and aluminum clad wood windows (wooden exterior appearance). Picking a window brand is an important part of your window buying project as a good brand will offer quality frame materials, great warranties, multiple aluminum window types, and offer stylish designs that can’t be found elsewhere.

Some of the best brands offer different aluminum window framing such as Pella Windows’ beautiful casement window under their Architect Series. Milgard Windows also boasts an entire aluminum window series with an exclusive aluminum skylight window installation option.

Below is a list of some window brands that offer aluminum window replacement. Before choosing a top window brand, you may want to do some research to determine which brand will work best for you and is within your window installation budget.


Thermal Breaks in Aluminum Windows

When shopping for aluminum windows, it’s important to ask about the frame’s thermal breaks and to look at a cross section of the frame to compare the number of breaks between frames. A frame with more breaks will generally be more efficient overall.

aluminum window thermal break

Thermal breaks are spaces between sections of an aluminum window frame. Aluminum frames are mostly hollow on the inside, and the chambers that make up the frame are disconnected from one another. Each open section where the two sides don’t connect is a thermal break, and within these breaks, insulators and resins are inserted. This makes the frame more durable and cuts down on the pathways for heat to travel through the aluminum.