High Quality vs. Low Quality Vinyl Windows: What Differentiates Them?

Written by AnonymousMay 11, 2011

Discussing the Differences Between Low and High Quality Vinyl Windows

Vinyl is the perfect all weather material. It can be used for windows in all climates, even ones with severe heat or cold. While vinyl is a tough material, it’s also easy to manipulate into any shape or size you want, so it’s a great material for custom homes with unique configurations.

Some manufacturer’s mix vinyl with other materials to save money. When this happens, vinyl’s finer qualities may be compromised. So when searching for high quality windows, look for durability ratings, color, and heat resistance.

Safety and Durability Ratings

Many high quality vinyl windows have been rated by the American National Standards Institute, Inc., (ANSI) and/or the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) for safety and durability. The ANSI and AAMA set tough standards for windows, so you can be sure a certified window is high quality. Low quality windows are rarely certified, if ever.


The sun's ultraviolet rays cause vinyl windows to discolor over time. If the windows are white, the sun causes yellowing. A high quality window contains titanium dioxide or a tin compound that brightens the window by several shades. The compound also protects the window from the effects of the sun. If these compounds aren’t included on the label, simply ask the manufacturer what the window is made of. Some manufacturers may use a cheaper method of preserving color called tinting. A pale blue tinted vinyl window is an indication that this method has been used.

Stand Up to Heat

High quality vinyl windows can stand up to temperatures of 160 degrees and higher. This is especially useful in hot climates. A low quality vinyl window will soften at 160 degrees, which can cause sagging and cracking to the area surrounding the shutters.


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