Whether you work on a replacement job or install completely new windows, wooden frames offer a durable solution with a material that looks good as well. There are many different types of wood in the market that you can use to make window frames. However, it can get quite confusing.
In this post, we discuss the advantages of using natural wood for window frames. We also cover what you need to look for to procure the best wood for window frames and the advantages of choosing natural wood. Then, we highlight some of the best wood for window frames.
Using the Right Approach for Making Window Frames
So, you have a major project on your hands for making window frames. Now what? You may have worked on several other woodworking projects, but window frames have a few unique aspects to consider. No issues! We will guide you on how to get started.
Here are a few primary things to consider:
The wood should be durable. Although one side will face the inside, the other will face the outside and be exposed to the elements. So, durability is an important factor.
If you live in a region of extreme climate, you need to consider the insulating properties of the wood. Choose a wood that keeps the room cool in summer but keeps the cold out in winter.
The window frames you use should be safe to install and use. For example, frames made of wood prone to warping can cause the panes to shatter, injuring people walking below the window.
The most preferred material is wood. Nowadays, aluminum frames have gained huge popularity, but wood has a few advantages that aluminum cannot meet. For example, wood has better insulation properties and is more resistant to corrosion.
Type of Wood
Choose darker woods with a grainier finish like oak, ash, or walnut. If you select softwood, less-veined woods like cypress, pine, or Douglas fir are economical and suitable for the job.
Advantages of Using Natural Wood for Window Frames
You can get different styles and textures for window frames and in various materials. But natural wood is one of the most preferred choices for the reasons outlined below:
Wood is among the most durable of materials. Today, there is a lot of technology for treating wood to enhance its longevity, whatever type of wood it might be.
You can recycle wood. By reusing wood, you contribute to optimizing energy efficiency, which results in a reduction of CO2 emissions.
The cellulose content of wood absorbs sound energy, making wood a suitable sound-proofing material.
Waterproof and Weather Resistant
Depending on the wood you use or how it is treated, wood exhibits considerable resistance to the adverse effects of rain and the sun.
Wooden window frames can add warmth to the interiors of a room like no other material. The different textures and hues of wood and the infinite grain patterns you can get from various types of wood make wood an attractive option.
Best Wood for Window Frames
Now you have an idea about the requirements of wooden window frames, let’s take a look at some of the most popular choices of wood for making window frames:
Softwood that has undergone a chemical treatment process to increase its durability is commonly alluded to as treated softwood. It will also have considerable resistance to insect attack. Generally, this variety of wood will not contain toxic substances and is suitable for making window frames.
Western Red Cedar
You will find this wood attractive in its rich mocha color. Western red cedar exhibits exceptional resistance to termites, rot, and decay, making it suitable for external window frames. It is lightweight wood and is easy to work with. Western red cedar also sands to a smooth, satiny finish, and you can get excellent results while applying stain and paint to it.
If you want untreated softwood, redwood is a good option to use for making window frames. You can get a traditional look using a modern finish. In addition, redwood is easily available and cheaper than many hardwoods.
Redwood is also a sustainable option, which means that you aren’t endangering the environment by using it. This wood has a smooth, straight grain pattern. As a result, it shows a fair degree of water resistance and is less prone to insect attack.
Although a softwood, Douglas fir is surprisingly strong for its lightweight structure., It Is easy to work with and durable enough to withstand the vagaries of nature if left outside. It also takes screws and nails quite easily, being so soft. All these features make Douglas fir highly suitable for making window frames.
Western hemlock is a softwood that is pale with a uniform grain and an attractive appearance. Not only is this wood durable, but you can carve it easily due to its softness. Therefore, with this wood, you get not only a highly workable wood but also one upon which you can carve ornate designs. All this makes western hemlock a suitable choice for making window frames.
When we talk about making window frames from cedar, another important wood to consider is yellow cedar, also known as Alaskan yellow cedar. It is a durable wood because it withstands insect attack and decay. It also holds screws and nails easily and takes stain quite well. All these properties make yellow cedar a suitable choice for making window frames.
The use of oak started in the medieval British era. It played a prominent role in making indoor and outdoor furniture and structures, including window frames, and it still does. Today oak is a popular choice for making window frames worldwide due to its strength and durability.
We also know oak well for its dimensional stability, meaning that it is less prone to warp, expand or contract. Due to the high quality of this wood and its huge popularity, oak is an expensive option.
Here is the ultimate option for making window frames, furniture, or almost anything in wood. Teak is a durable, strong type of wood that looks great with an appropriate finish. In addition, it secretes a natural oil that protects the wood from insect attack and makes it resistant to water and the harsh rays of the sun.
But teak is also an expensive option. It isn’t easily available, and you need to be careful of the source because there is so much illegally sourced teak going around.
Red Grandis comes from South America and is of the Eucalyptus family. If you procure red Grandis from FSC certified plantations, you can be sure that you have sustainable wood, which makes you a responsible user.
Red Grandis is durable, and you can machine it easily. It has a fine, tight grain structure which allows you to apply a suitable finish like varnish or paint. It enhances the look and protects the wood. Like oak, red Grandis is also dimensionally stable but is a much cheaper option.
This hardwood from West Africa also makes an excellent choice for making window frames. Sapele is reddish-brown with a smart grain pattern. You can bring out the best in it by using a transparent finish. Sapele is moderately durable and lasts for at least ten years if adequately maintained.
Here, we have featured what we feel are some of the best woods that you can use for making window frames. That is not to say that these are the only suitable woods you can get. We provided a few tips here on what goes into suitable wood for window frames.
Armed with this knowledge, even if you cannot procure the wood featured in this post, we are sure that you can find a few good alternatives. Follow the tips provided, use any of the woods featured here or similar types, and you’ll make some great window frames in your future projects.