Fibrex vs. Fiberglass (Ultrex) Replacement Windows
The advantages and disadvantages of fiberglass & fibrex® replacement windows
Both fibrex® and fiberglass (Ultrex®) have different properties that give them advantages in the replacement window market. Both are superior to standard vinyl, with better energy efficiency, durability and strength. But comparing fibrex to fiberglass isn’t always easy, with so many biased articles floating around on the internet. We sell and install fibrex (Renewal by Andersen) windows vs fiberglass (Marvin) replacement windows. To help understand the differences we’ve put together an article explaining the advantages.
Fiberglass Replacement Windows
The bestselling fiberglass window is made by Marvin. Their replacement windows are constructed using a fiberglass compound called Ultrex®. Ultrex® fiberglass offers more strength than vinyl, and better energy efficiency. Ultrex also carries some of the best energy efficiency ratings in the replacement window industry. There are other fiberglass window manufacturers in the industry, all of whom offer a substitute that compares very closely to fiberglass ultrex®.
Disadvantages of Fiberglass Replacement Windows
Fiberglass frames are painted and may need regular maintenance.
Fiberglass can only be made into straight lineals.
Fiberglass is a thermoset material and cannot be reformed into new profiles
Few color choices & optional features
Higher price compared to vinyl
Fibrex Replacement Windows
Fibrex is a composite material invented by the Andersen Window Corporation. Fibrex has advantages like narrower frames allowing for more glass space, high energy efficiency and low maintenance. Replacement windows constructed using fibrex never need to be painted. Compared to fiberglass windows, fibrex can be formed into many different profiles. Fibrex material can be extruded into any kind of window – including curved and specialty windows, unlike fiberglass that’s restricted by straight lineals and profiles. This helps to preserve the unique architecture and beauty of your home. Since fibrex is formed using real wood it also retains a more natural wood look compared to fiberglass / Ultrex.
Disadvantages of Fibrex
Fibrex is the best composite material for use in windows today. As such, fibrex-based windows tend to have a higher sticker price compared to other materials used for windows. However, the overall value can’t be beat based on energy-efficiency and long-term value of fibrex-based windows.
Another thing to note is that fiberglass in replacement windows is still a newer construction material. Only time will showcase how well it does over the next decade or two. We recommend talking with a local window contractor and have them share their opinions and experiences with the different window types.
FREE Estimate for Replacement Windows in Rochester, MN
Contact Ryan Windows & Siding to learn more about replacement window materials and the best value for your home improvement dollar. If you need help deciding which windows would be best for your home, contact us today for a free estimate. Ryan Windows & Siding is the window contractor Rochester, MN area homeowners turn to.