Buyer’s Guide: Aluminum vs. Vinyl Windows in Mobile Homes

12th Sep 2022

Buyer’s Guide: Aluminum vs. Vinyl Windows in Mobile Homes

Buyer’s Guide: Aluminum vs. Vinyl Windows in Mobile Homes

Windows are the portals that connect our homes to the beauty of the outside world. We use our windows to allow light into our houses and provide us with views of nature. Many mobile homes are originally built with classic, single-pane aluminum windows. However, as manufactured housing has modernized in the past few decades, residential-style vinyl windows are becoming more and more commonplace.

Here at Mobile Home Outfitters, customers typically come to us needing to replace one or more windows in their homes. In this article, we’ll look at some of the pros and cons of both styles and help you figure out which is best for your application.

Aluminum Windows

For many years, aluminum-framed windows were the standard in the manufactured housing industry. These windows have been sought-after for their relative ease of installation and low cost. Today, however, they are not as common for a few reasons.

First, it’s important to know that aluminum windows are a “single-pane” window, meaning that they are comprised of only a single pane of glass. By default, these windows are not as durable and significantly less energy-efficient than their dual-pane vinyl counterparts.

Secondly, to compensate for their inherent lack of insulation value, exterior aluminum windows (commonly known as “prime” windows) are commonly paired with an interior counterpart known as a “storm” window. A storm window is a secondary single-pane aluminum window that mounts to the inside of the home and opens and closes in the same direction as the exterior prime window.

Aluminum storm windows have a white frame to complement the interior color of your home. They can also be removed in the summer months when ease of access to open and close the exterior window becomes more important.

Aluminum windows are also commonly used for food trucks or other mobile applications where a light-duty window is needed, and insulation value is not much of a factor.

Vinyl Windows

Nowadays, dual-pane vinyl windows are more commonly used in manufactured homes and mobile homes than aluminum—and for a good reason.

Firstly, vinyl windows come in a dual-paned construction, making them significantly better at retaining heat in the winter, and air-conditioned air in the summer.

Secondly, they are of much higher quality than aluminum windows. Along with their superior energy efficiency, they are much nicer looking and will last longer than aluminum mobile home windows.

While vinyl mobile home windows have become much more common over the years, they come at a higher price point than aluminum windows. The cost is directly associated with the quality of materials, improved functionality and energy efficiency, and the additional pane of glass.

While it may be harder for those on a strict budget to justify the additional cost, we firmly believe that upgrading the windows in your home (along with your exterior doors) is one of the best improvements you can make. We encourage these upgrades because they’ll provide you with a return in the form of lower energy costs for heating and cooling.

Maintenance Issues

Vinyl and aluminum windows have advantages and disadvantages, but at Mobile Home Outfitters, it’s our firm belief that upgrading your home to dual-pane vinyl windows is one of the best investments you can make. For any questions, comments, or concerns regarding new windows for your mobile home, you can speak with a specialist by calling us at (888) 646-7782, or emailing us at