Vinyl windows can be kind of tricky when it comes to trim colors – they are almost always stark white and generally cannot be painted (see below). Some lean to matching trim color to the vinyl – this gives a hospital-feeling white-on-white look that lacks visual interest. It also ranks a solid “Zero” on the Warmth scale.
The other end of the spectrum is the high contrast approach. This lacks subtlety and, just like whitewall tires, isn’t suited for most homes. Both white-on-white and dark-on-white are just too harsh a contrast for most tastes.
The answer to this vexing problem? A simple compromise, of course.
An off-white trim color will soften the transition from the harsh white of the vinyl windows and add a bit of visual interest with the slight color change. This color trick also serves to add a bit of warmth to what is all-too-often a jarring color transition.
Off-white trim color helps soften the harsh appearance of white vinyl windows.
Short answer: manufacturer’s warranty. Window manufacturers are concerned that paint colors may increase heat gain and cause vinyl seams to pop, whole windows to swell out of their openings and Saturn to change it’s orbit. The darker the color the greater the possibility of planetary mis-alignment. So manufacturers opt to say “No” to any paint at all on their products.
That’s not to say it hasn’t been done – we’ve painted vinyl windows to good effect but only after informing the homeowner of the risks. A special primer, very high quality paint and – Ba-da bing! We’ve got happy homeowners, vinyl windows that blend with the rest of the house and no harm to Saturn’s orbit.
Of course, this should only be done by trained professionals – do not try this on your own home. However, if you do, give us a call and we’ll walk you through the process.