View the Article: http://www.mistergreen.co.uk/news/retrofitwindowswoodvsplastic-35.htm
Here in the UK we probably have the least energy efficient housing stock in the northern hemisphere. A huge number of houses over 100 years old, with solid masonry and single glazed windows. For many homeowners investment in replacement windows is a necessity when windows reach the end of life and are not economically repairable. Others make the decision to replace windows to improve energy efficiency and comfort. Replacement of old timber window frames with plastic is the most common retrofit solution, but with improved paint films and lamination techniques, wooden frames are making a comeback. Using 'engineered' wood, window frames are more dimensionally stable and it is possible to form complex stormproof cross sections with multiple draught seals. Where aesthetics are important (and where are they not?) engineered wood can provide flush casements and slimmer profiles. The question is: which is more environmentally friendly-plastic or wood? If we take issues such as: Life cycle costs Embodied energy Toxic waste/processes Recycling of waste materials and end of life recycling Maintenance costs Adhesives used in engineered wood Which is the more environmentally friendly solution for retrofit windows-plastic or wood?