How Much Does Window Replacement Cost? | 2024 Guide

By Tamara Jude Updated May 22, 2024

Typical costs range from $235 to $1,230 per window.

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Window replacement costs typically range from $230 to $1,230 per window, but homeowners will pay around $730 per window on average. These costs can be dependent on the window style, material, brand, and any special features. This guide covers all costs associated with this home upgrade, plus tips for finding the best replacement windows within your style and budget.

  • The least expensive types of windows are double-hung, egress, storm, and transom. The most expensive styles are bow and bay.
  • Aluminum and vinyl are typically the least expensive window materials, while fiberglass and wood increase price.
  • Enhanced energy efficiency features increase window costs but have the biggest return on investment, especially in harsh climates.
  • Window installation labor generally runs between $150 and $200 per window.

Note: Cost information in this article was calculated using RSMeans data from Gordian™. RSMeans is a construction cost database used by thousands of contractors to generate their project pricing.


Major Cost Factors of Window Replacement

Window prices vary based on the type of window material, its glazing, style, and associated labor costs. Traditional styles, such as double-hung windows in stock sizes, are generally less expensive than custom sizes or design-focused options, such as skylights. Custom windows are also pricier than standard options. In our survey of 1,000 homeowners, 51% of respondents opted for standard windows while 49% went with a custom order, so the right fit depends on your home and design tastes.

Window brand also plays a significant part in window prices. For example, a window from a reputable and high-end brand such as Renewal by Andersen will cost more than other brands.

Though windows are expensive, you should view them as an investment. “Just like cars, there are various degrees of quality of windows,” says Colin Sullivan, director of production for Renewal by Andersen’s Carolinas division. He says that while inexpensive windows may be tempting, higher-end options will help you avoid frequent window repairs or replacements.

Factor 1: Cost by Window Type

Window type refers to the window’s design. Simpler, standard-size windows such as double-hung or egress styles are the most cost-effective. The larger and more complex the design, the higher the cost. Expect higher pricing for styles such as bay, bow, and picture windows. 

Investing in a window type is a matter of preference. If you’re not set on a particular look, you can save money by choosing a simpler design, such as a double-hung style. We’ve outlined the costs for the most popular window styles in the table below.

Factor 2: Cost by Window Frame Materials

Window frames vary in durability, required maintenance, energy efficiency, and customization options. Aluminum and vinyl frames are the most cost-effective, but may not provide the efficiency or look you’re after. Fiberglass windows are highly energy-efficient, while wood windows provide classic curb appeal.

Frame material is an area where investment matters, as it directly affects your return. Some materials are more energy-efficient, durable, longer-lasting, or better suited for your climate’s weather conditions. Weight these considerations with your budget. Opt for the window material you most can afford that will hold up best in your climate while lowering your energy bills.

We’ve broken down the costs of each window material below.

  • Aluminum frames ($64-$505): Aluminum is the most affordable window material but not the most energy-efficient, especially if not thermally broken, meaning the window doesn’t have an insulated barrier within the frame. Aluminum provides long-lasting durability but is prone to rusting and can expand or contract in extreme temperatures.
  • Vinyl frames ($219-$1,150): Vinyl windows offer a good balance of energy efficiency and durability, as it requires little maintenance and lasts for years. Some vinyl windows can be customized with wood-like exteriors that make them look like traditional wood windows at a lower price tag.
  • Wood frames ($325-$1,375): Wood windows are timeless and have many customization options, such as paints and stains. However, they require the most maintenance and upkeep. Wood is prone to rotting and expands and contracts with the temperature.
  • Fiberglass frames ($423-$1,587): Fiberglass windows come at a higher price for a reason. They’re weather-resistant, provide excellent insulation, and last for many years.
  • Composite frames ($650-$1,269): Composite windows combine wood with aluminum or polyvinyl chloride (PVC) polymers. They’re more durable than vinyl or wood windows and require little maintenance.

Here’s a look at how the different materials compare. Note that not getting a check doesn’t necessarily mean the material doesn’t have this quality at all, it’s just not its strength.

Material

Durability

Energy Performance

Longevity

Customization

Ease of Maintenance

Weather Resistance

Aluminum

Composite

Fiberglass

Vinyl

Wood

Factor 3: Cost of Glazing Options and Energy Efficiency

The more panes in your windows, the more your home is protected from outside temperatures and noise. Multipane windows require a more considerable investment but go a long way toward increasing your home’s energy efficiency and reducing your monthly electric bill.

Single-pane windows offer minimal protection from external temperatures or noises but have the lowest price tag, with each window costing around $150 to $400. Double-pane windows provide more protection from external factors but start at around $450 per window on average. Triple-pane glass offers maximum protection from the environment and the best value for your home. Expect to pay several hundred dollars for triple-pane windows.

Multipane windows are another feature worth investing in. You’ll see a big bang for your buck by going with multiple panes, so compromising on areas that don’t affect energy efficiency or longevity, such as color or style, is worth it if it means you can afford even double-pane windows. 

It’s also beneficial to invest in glass coatings that make your window more efficient. Most top brands today are designed with a low-emissivity (low-e) glass coating. A low-e coating reduces the amount of infrared and ultraviolet light coming through your window. Essentially, it acts as an insulator, keeping heat out of your home in summer and in your home in winter. It’s unnoticeable to the eye and doesn’t impact the amount of natural light the window allows. 

See how much window costs vary based on the number of panes in the table below.

Factor 4: Labor Cost

When creating your window project budget, remember that you’re not just purchasing windows—you must also pay a licensed contractor to install them. Labor costs are impacted by a few factors, including the number of windows in your project and how complex or difficult the installation is. Expect to be charged around $150 to $200 to install one standard-size window.

Installing complex, labor-intensive windows such as skylights or bay windows will increase your total cost. So will adding a new frame or trim to irregular windows or replacing worn window frames. Your installer should provide you with a written estimate up-front.

While installation labor won’t be your biggest cost factor, you should still plan to spend money on a licensed, experienced installer. They will ensure your windows are properly installed and sealed so your home is as energy-efficient as possible, and you won’t run into costly issues later on. A licensed installer should also provide a labor warranty. That means if you ever have window issues due to faulty installation, you can file a claim instead of having to fix them out of pocket.

Factor 5: Cost by Window Brand

Window brands charge differently depending on material quality, design complexity, energy efficiency, years of experience, reputation, certifications, and other factors they feel set them apart. Balancing cost with return is the key to choosing the right brand for you. If a brand’s cost is comparatively high, check its certifications and customer reviews. If it has ENERGY STAR certification and mostly positive customer reviews, you’ll likely see a worthwhile return on the investment. 

Below is a breakdown of some of the best window brands’ average costs:


Other Potential Cost Factors to Consider

Though not as important as the above factors, the following things can also impact your total window cost.

Disposal of Materials

Many window installers include disposal and cleanup costs in their estimates. Installation crews will properly dispose of your old windows, installation materials, and trash. Ask your installer if these services are included. If not, you may incur additional fees for proper cleanup. Disposal fees typically cost $40 to $50.

Retrofit Replacement Cost vs. Full-Frame Replacements

Retrofit installations can reduce your replacement window costs by 15% to 20%, but this isn’t always the best route. Retrofitting a window involves installing a new window insert while preserving the existing window frame. The only parts replaced are the sashes and hardware. This means fewer materials, less intensive labor, and barely any disruption to your existing walls, making it more cost-effective. It’s a good option if you want to update the glass due to breakage, for a new look, or increased energy efficiency. Note that the replacement sashes must fit perfectly into the existing frame. If they don’t, you could end up with poor efficiency. Typically, retrofitting costs $100 to $400 per window for labor plus materials.

If your window frame and trim are severely damaged, have an irregular shape, or you want a different style, you’ll need a full-frame replacement. A full-frame window replacement includes installing a new frame, trim, casing, sashes, hardware, etc. It’s an entirely new window unit. You’ll need to go this route if there’s damage to your window beyond the glass, you want a new style or size, your home’s historic windows are no longer available, or your home has mold issues. The cost is higher for this option due to more labor and materials, but trying to save money by choosing a retrofit when it’s not appropriate for the situation can cost you more in the long run. 

Geographic Location

Your geographic location could impact your selected replacement windows. Residents in colder areas should invest in adequately insulated windows with multiple panes. For warmer climates, consider windows with adequate ventilation and a low-e coating to help reduce air conditioning (AC) use. Local ordinances sometimes dictate the best window materials to use based on the climate.

Structural Repairs

In addition to window replacement, you may need window frame, trim, or drywall repair. All structural material surrounding a window must be in good condition. If your installer says repairs are needed, your project cost will increase. Repairing drywall and trim can cost an extra $50 to $100 per square foot.

Weatherproofing and Insulation

Depending on your window choice, you may need additional insulation or weatherproofing to improve the window’s utility. These upgrades help seal off gaps, preventing air leaks or water damage, and improve your home’s overall temperature and comfort level. Low-grade insulation only costs a few extra dollars per window, but high-end choices, such as high-performance low-e coating, can raise the price a few hundred dollars. 

Window Location

Your windows’ location can impact your project cost in several ways. For example, window replacements on higher floors require special equipment and more workers, resulting in higher labor costs. Multiple windows on upper floors will increase your total and extend the installation timeline. 

Basement installations can cost $250 to $700 but increase if egress windows are installed. Window replacements in the bedroom, bathroom, or foyer are relatively affordable since those areas typically use standard windows. Your costs will increase for installations in the hallway, living room, or kitchen, where more decorative upgrades are usually made.

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Window Replacement Cost

Replacement windows on average range from $300 to $1,200.

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Windows with fixed top sash and bottom sash that slides up, sash divided by white grilles a surrounded by white elegant frame horizontal white vinyl siding on a new construction residence
Single-Hung Windows

Single-hung windows on average cost $150 to $400 per window.

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Energy Efficient Upgrades

Double-pane installation typically ranges from $450 to $1,000 per window.

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How to Reduce Window Replacement Costs

Window replacement can require a sizable budget. Here are a few saving tips.

  • Buy budget-friendly windows: One of the best ways to save is choosing low-cost replacement windows, especially for extensive projects. Simplistic styles and affordable window materials may not add the curb appeal you’re looking for, but they’ll provide long-term savings and improve energy efficiency. 
  • Get multiple quotes: We recommend getting free quotes from various companies to gauge which one offers the best savings and selection for your needs. You can also use these quotes to negotiate for a better deal with your top company. 
  • Shop in the off-season: Window companies are busiest during spring and fall. Use this to your advantage and shop for windows during the off-season. You may be able to find special deals during this time. Keep in mind that completing a replacement project during winter will expose your home to cold temperatures. 
  • Upgrade with more windows: Many window manufacturers offer better deals for bulk orders. Consider increasing the number of replacement orders in your project for a lower cost per window. This may increase your project total, but you’ll get more bang for your buck.
  • Use local incentives and rebates: Some window installation companies offer time-sensitive discounts and rebates for their products. Check for energy efficiency incentives offered by your state or local city government. Visit the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) for your state’s most up-to-date listing of energy-efficiency incentives.

What are Signs That I Need to Replace My Windows?

If you’re unsure whether you need window replacement, look for the following signs.

  • Condensation: Unless you have single-pane windows, interior condensation is a sign of failing windows. Condensation between the panes occurs when the window seal fails, causing moisture to seep in. Installing more energy-efficient windows will stop leaks or drafts and reduce your energy use.
  • Drafts and leaks: Check your windows for drafts and leaks around the frame and sash, or the part of the window that holds the glass in place. Put your hand around the frame and the windowpane. If can you feel the cold or heat, your windows are not providing a proper seal.
  • External noise: Older windows don’t offer adequate protection against external noise. Newer models with double- or triple-pane upgrades help reduce outdoor noise, creating a more comfortable environment. 
  • Higher energy bills: Poor-quality windows allow the outside temperature to seep into your home, causing your AC or heater to work harder. As your windows continue to deteriorate, you’ll notice your energy bills start to rise. New windows offer improved energy efficiency and comfort levels for your home.
  • Issues with opening and closing: Problems opening and closing your windows could indicate several issues, such as a warped or damaged frame, improper installation, or rotting. Have your windows checked to determine if you need repair or full replacement. 
  • Rotting frames: Wooden windows become less durable when exposed to moisture. Water-damaged wood frames will decay or grow mold without proper treatment or upkeep. Molding frames pose a security and health risk to you and your family.
  • Visible damage: Visible damage such as cracks, breaks, or bends are more straightforward indicators that your windows are damaged. Visible mold, rot, or mildew can lead to later health issues and indicate leaks or water damage. It’s imperative to replace these windows to protect your family’s health and safety.

Window replacement generally involves removing your old window, prepping the opening, installing the new unit, and sealing it for efficiency. Most windows can be installed within a few hours, pending the installer is familiar with the process and has the necessary equipment. Remember to factor shipping into your timeline. If you’re ordering windows, you may wait a few weeks to several months before they arrive, depending on supply chains. Keep this in mind when project planning. 

Whether you’re hiring a professional or planning to install your own windows, you can learn more about the process below to be prepared for your window installation.

  • Use the pry bar to remove the interior window stops before attempting to remove the old window. The stops are the thin wooden bands that surround the top and sides of the frame. Set them aside for reinstallation later.
  • One by one, the sashes should be able to be removed without removing the windowsill or exterior stops. You might need to cut off the inner stops with an oscillating multitool if they won’t come off.
  • Take off the sash cord pulleys, sash liners, and springs.
  • Examine the state of the frame before proceeding. If there is significant mold growth, rot, or other issues, you might need to postpone the project and replace the frame. 
  • Make sure to clean the frame before installation. 
  • To ensure a seamless fit for the new window, make sure the frame is plumb, or level. To do this, measure both diagonals of the frame from the top corner to the opposing bottom corner. 
  • The frame is plumb if these measurements are within 1/4 inch of one another. If they are not, you might need to remove the trim and use shims, or thin pieces of wood, to adjust the frame’s width. 
  • If the difference is too large, though, the frame itself may need repair or replacement.
  • Test fitting the new replacement window into the opening. Then, use the caulking gun to run a bead of silicone caulk along the inside surfaces of the exterior window stops. 
  • Center the window in the frame and press it back against the exterior stops. There will be small spaces all around the frame. Ensure they are equal on all sides.
  • Use shims and insulation material to close the gaps. A snug fit is ideal, but not so snug that it prevents the window from operating as intended.
  • Open the window and install the mounting screws through the shims and into the frame. To prevent the shims from splitting, drill a pilot hole through them with your power drill. Don’t overtighten the screws, to avoid moving the frame out of alignment.
  • Fill any remaining gaps with insulating material, such as expanding foam or backer rods. Don’t use loose insulation or fiberglass batting. 
  • Reinstall the interior window stops, or add new stops if the old ones were in poor condition. 
  • If you plan to paint the frame, you’ll need to seal any seams with paintable latex caulk to any seams. 
  • Wipe the lines with a wet fingertip to remove excess and smooth the surface. If desired, paint the interior trim.

Professional vs. DIY Window Replacement

Professional window installation companies are the best option for window replacement. Although skilled do-it-yourself (DIY) enthusiasts may want to tackle the project, a professional company offers guaranteed results. Professional installations also include warranties, which come in handy if you experience any issues. Be sure to review the full details of your warranty agreements.

Below are the top reasons to hire a qualified professional for your window installation.

Code Compliance

A licensed professional will know any required permits, inspections, ordinances, and building codes associated with the project. A professional will ensure your installation meets requirements, passes inspections, and doesn’t present an issue if you ever go to appraise or sell your home. 

Expertise

You may get into a window project and find it more complicated and labor-intensive than you expected. Professionals know what to plan for and what to do if the project has unexpected twists. This comes in handy if your project involves nontraditional windows or you run into a structural integrity issue. You want a skilled laborer to seal your windows to ensure there’s no air or moisture leakage. 

Safety

Hiring a pro helps protect both you and your home. Window installation can involve lifting heavy materials, handling sharp equipment, or being on ladders. Professionals are trained in safety precautions and handle all the work for you, so you’re not at risk. They also reduce risk to your home. They know what to look for regarding your home’s structural integrity and can spot and safely handle any mold or moisture issues. 

Warranty Compliance

Some manufacturers void their warranty terms if anyone other than a licensed window professional performs work on your windows. An inexperienced installer could damage the window or install it incorrectly, which the manufacturer isn’t willing to cover. 

Many window manufacturers have a dedicated network of installation professionals certified to install their products. We recommend working with companies that specialize in replacement windows, such as Renewal by Andersen.  Renewal by Andersen both manufactures its windows and has an in-house crew trained to install them. This simplifies the buying and installing process by removing third parties and guaranteeing your manufacturer’s warranty won’t be voided due to an issue with outside installers. 

Another option is getting local window installer recommendations from friends or neighbors, or finding certified window installers through home improvement stores such as The Home Depot and Lowe’s. However, these professionals may not be explicitly certified for your window brand.


Questions to Ask Professional Window Installers

When speaking to potential window installers, use the questions below to gauge their experience, knowledge, and credentials.

Cost Questions

Expertise Questions

Timeline Questions

Other Questions

We recommend getting quotes from at least three window companies to find the best selection and pricing. You can also check at your local big-box store for window services.


Our Recommendation

If you’re looking for a cost-effective window replacement option, stick with a standard style, such as a double- or single-hung window. From there, weigh the benefits and drawbacks of each frame material. Though aluminum is the least expensive on average, it likely won’t last as long or provide the level of energy efficiency as a pricier option, such as fiberglass. Vinyl and composite windows have a more midtier price tag while still offering durability, longevity, and efficiency. Go with the replacement windows that meet your most important priorities without exceeding your budget.

We recommend brands Champion and Milgard if you’re looking for lower-cost options. Both have great window selections and customer reviews without a high price tag. If you’re willing to spend more, Renewal by Andersen is our top pick due to the product performance, in-house installation services, and warranty coverage you get for the price.

We suggest getting a quote online or by phone from at least three window companies in your area to find the best rate. Compare companies’ product catalogs, warranty options, energy certifications, and customer reviews. Only hire licensed professionals for installation and get an itemized estimate up-front. 


Window Replacement Cost FAQ

How long does window replacement take?

A single window replacement takes about an hour. This time frame is for a simple replacement, such as a single-hung window. Replacement time increases with the number of windows, the complexity of the installation, and the window’s location. A large or whole-home window replacement can take several weeks or months.

Is it cheaper to replace all windows at once?

Yes, it’s cheaper to replace all windows at the same time. Many window companies offer volume discounts for large installation orders. You’ll reduce total labor costs by completing your window replacements in one project. Homeowners will need a more significant initial investment but will benefit from long-term savings. 

How much does it cost to replace a full-frame window?

Full-frame window replacement averages between $360 and $1,440, or about 15% to 20% higher than retrofit installations. These costs vary depending on the window material, size, and location. Opt for retrofit installation when possible to save more money.

Can I replace windows myself?

Yes, you can replace windows yourself, but you’ll need extensive DIY experience and knowledge of window installation. These projects are often labor-intensive and require costly supplies and equipment. Improper installations can lead to potential air leaks, water damage, and poor energy efficiency. It’s best to hire a professional windows installer to complete window replacements.


How We Chose the Top Window Brands

We researched and analyzed dozens of window manufacturers. We then crafted a rating system based on each brand’s standard and energy-efficient product offerings.

We spoke directly to representatives at each company to learn how the installation process works and determine how each brand personalizes its windows for each home. We also closely analyzed each company’s warranty options to ensure their product and labor guarantees match or exceed industry standards.

Finally, we assessed the manufacturer’s years of experience and customer reputation. In addition, we analyzed the 100 most recent Google Reviews for each provider across various locations and branches.