If you’re shopping for windows you might hear all sorts of claims from the door to door window salesmen of the world. They may tell you that vinyl windows will warp or melt in the sun.
It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that many of these characters don’t have your best interests at heart and they may even make claims that are just plain false to get you to sign on the dotted line. (Do any contracts actually have dotted lines anymore? Maybe that’s a post for another day)
So can vinyl windows hold up in hot climates like Texas or Arizona?
The short answer is yes. Many millions of vinyl windows have been installed in Texas and Florida and Arizona without trouble and that’s been true for many years. The large window manufacturers are huge companies with engineering departments full of smart folks who make sure the products will hold up.
The products are all tested in harsh environments for a very long time before they’re sold to you. They hold up just fine.
The manufacturers typically offer very long term warranties so if your pretty new windows warped and fell out of the house that would be very expensive for them to cover. Of course this is not an issue at all so it’s really nothing to worry about.
It’s just a thing salespeople say to try to scare you into buying something more expensive.
I was told by a window salesman that fiberglass or composite windows are better in hot climates. Is this true?
Also, no. Not true at all. Sadly fiberglass and composite windows don’t offer many advantages over a nicer vinyl window other than their pretty looks. They’re not more durable, they don’t do better in high sun areas and they’re not more efficient.
Wondering why that friendly salesman would have told you that vinyl windows warp if it wasn’t true? Typically it’s because they get paid 100% commission so they want to get the sale no matter what.
Turnover in those jobs is also usually high because they’re not great jobs so the people telling you all about windows usually just came out of training class last week and they don’t really know anything about the products. They just know what their boss told them and they believe it, at first.
The friendly window salesman I met had some pictures of warped vinyl windows, how do you explain that smart guy?
Ha, I know those guys can seem very friendly and helpful. That’s their job. It is true that vinyl windows back in the 80’s were not designed for use in very high sun areas.
The manufacturers didn’t offer them in those markets and if they were installed it was by companies that shipped them from other areas. That’s an issue that has been solved for a very long time now. Fortunately you’re not buying 1980’s vintage windows so nothing to worry about there.
How can I know who to believe? I don’t want to have problems with my new windows.
Nobody wants problems with new windows and I completely understand that this business can be challenging to sort through. That’s one reason we created this site! Here’s a little story to prove that vinyl windows hold up just fine in hot climates.
One of the manufacturers that we deal with has several US plants. Shipping windows over the Rocky Mountains is expensive so large national type manufacturers will usually have east coast and west coast plants to save on shipping.
This manufacturer that we’ve dealt with for years had their west coast plant outside of Seattle. They were shipping windows from there all over the west and that was proving to be expensive too.
Quite a while ago now, they built a brand new window plant in Yuma, AZ to serve the entire southwest market.
Everyone tends to think the climate is more extreme in their city than anywhere else, but you’ll have a hard time finding a hotter climate than Yuma, AZ. They build the windows there, they test the windows there and they ship windows from there to every other large market in the southwest.
If the windows can hold up in Yuma, they’ll do just fine in Dallas or Austin or your neck of the woods.
What should I take away from this?
First, vinyl windows will hold up just fine so nothing to worry about there.
Second, the fiberglass window or composite window salesperson who tried to scare you with the idea that vinyl windows warp was lying to you. If they were lying to you about this what else were they lying to you about?
I would guess this wasn’t the only tall tale they told you. These guys can be sketchy. If they’ve lied to you once they’ll do it again so my advice is to cross them off your list and find someone else to help with your replacement window project.
Remember, for more great window company info you can find our suggestions for the best local companies in your area right here.