Which Window Replacement Option is the Best Full Frame or Inserts

Windows are an essential part of a home. They are not only great for extending the view to the outside and bringing in natural light but are also a good source of energy efficiency. A properly insulated window can help hold in the heat inside a house during winters, and similarly, it can protect the interior of the house against heat in summers. However, as anything cannot last forever, windows also need replacement after breakage or frame deterioration.

If you are thinking about replacing your windows, then there are two major replacement techniques available in the market: insert window replacement and full frame replacement. Whether you are familiar with these terms or not, we are here to help you choose the right replacement option for your family.

Insert Window Replacement

This type of window replacement involves replacing your windows without touching their frames, interior, or exterior trims. Insert window replacement works by adding a new window to your existing frame.

Although there are many instances where homeowners do not prefer to use this technique, it is still worth exploring since it takes far less time to fix. Below we outline the pros and cons of insert window replacement.


  • This option can minimize the costs of your replacement process. It is estimated that you can achieve a 20-25% reduction when all is said and done.
  • It doesn’t require a lot of manpower to insert a window in an existing frame.
  • The installation is efficient.


  • The frame around the replacement window reduces the exposure of the window. Meaning, you might experience a decrease in overall window size.
  • Water protection and other insulation cannot be added.
  • Although it is cost efficient, it isn’t energy efficient. This is true especially when the frame of the window is worn out. In that case, no matter how energy efficient the glass is that you add to the window, it will still be inefficient.
  • It doesn’t give many choices when it comes to styles and sizes.

Full Window Replacement

As the name indicates, full window replacement is the option which involves completely replacing the window along with the frame, inner and outer trims, and every element associated with it. You might need to overhaul the whole structure. Take a look at the pros and cons of full window replacement before making your decision.

Prosinstalling full frame windows

  • It allows a more detailed approach to window replacement.
  • You can increase or decrease the size of the windows and use any style.
  • With this technique, you can efficiently add insulation.
  • Since it doesn’t reduce the size of your window, the visibility and the energy efficiency would not decrease.
  • More light will be able to enter the window.


  • Compared to insert replacement, it is a bit higher in cost.
  • The installation takes longer than Insert Window Replacement.
  • The window sill and frames are also replaced when using this service, so you might have to match the new window with other in your house.

Which option is the best for you?

Read through the circumstances below to see which option would be best for your home.

You can choose to use the Insert Window Replacement if:

  • When your frame is intact and good in condition.
  • You have a smaller budget and can get by with the frames you have
  • When you want to decrease the energy outlet or inlet in the house.
  • When your frame is square and level.
  • When you don’t want to disturb the design of the window.

You might want to consider Full Window Replacement if:

  • When your window frame/sill, or when your interior/exterior trim is damaged.
  • When you want to increase the size of your window.
  • When you want to add a window of another style to your home’s interior.
  • When you are thinking about making your home more energy efficient.

If you’re still struggling to decide between the full frame or insert window replacements, contact Pleasanton Glass to assist in finding the best choice for your window replacements for you.


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