At Marvin, we approach materials differently, holding ourselves to the highest standards for material selection, sourcing, and development. Marvin’s window and door materials—wood, extruded aluminum, High-Density Fiberglass and Ultrex® fiberglass each offer unique benefits. If you’re not sure what’s best for your project or your climate, a Marvin window and door dealer can help recommend the material with the right attributes.
Offering a rich, warm look, many customization options, and design versatility, wood is a premium choice. Wood can be used on both the interior and exterior of a window or door. As a lower maintenance option, wood can also be used on only the interior with an extruded aluminum cladding exterior. Marvin offers both options, leading the industry in sourcing, processing, and utilizing high quality wood.
Benefits of Wood
- Maintains its properties throughout drastic temperature changes
- Provides exceptional insulation
- Creates a warm, natural feeling in contemporary spaces and historic buildings alike
- Handles various treatments and finishes well
- Endless customization options when you consider special shapes and profiles, staining and paint options
The Marvin Materials Difference: Wood
Marvin’s dedication to quality wood products begins with sourcing. We rely on our strong relationships with wood suppliers, many of whom have been providing Marvin’s wood for over 20 years.
We know that the key to designing products the right way means understanding how wood behaves in different situations, and how we can harness its benefits. We have committed to employing materials experts, including advanced degree wood scientists who undergo annual training and wood specification-based education to help us design effectively with wood and educate building professionals about how to best use it.
This level of expertise for assessing wood and understanding its application contributes to our ability to design and manufacture incredibly durable wood windows and doors.
Extruded aluminum is used on window exteriors to provide additional protection and minimize maintenance compared to an all-wood window. Aluminum can either be extruded or roll-formed, and the difference in strength can be compared to an industrial chair versus an inexpensive lawn chair. Extruded aluminum is preferred for cladding because of its strength and weather resistance. It’s important to remember that clad windows and doors are different from products that have all-aluminum frames, which are typically less energy-efficient than the alternatives.
A significant benefit of extruded aluminum on the exteriors of windows and doors is their low maintenance durability that doesn’t require repainting during the product’s lifetime. We are committed to meeting the highest industry standards for color retention and chalk resistance, and our extruded aluminum finish maintains its shape and stands up to the elements years after installation—protected by our 20-year warranty.
Benefits of Extruded Aluminum
- Long-lasting color and performance
- Can create custom profiles, providing flexibility in matching details without compromising on performance
- Offers a low-maintenance alternative to wood
The Marvin Materials Difference: Extruded Aluminum
Marvin’s extruded aluminum meets the highest American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) 2605 standard, which requires 10 years of color retention and chalk resistance. We also offer a 20-year warranty on clad finish against loss of adhesion, chalking, or fading.*
Marvin's aluminum cladding goes through a five-step pre-treatment process, which promotes excellent adhesion of the factory-applied, 70% PVDF fluoropolymer paint finish. Thanks to precision cutting and fabrication processes, extruded aluminum can also fit a range of profile widths, including applications that call for extremely wide casing profiles or historic profiles.
Marvin’s durable paint finish is available in 19 rich standard colors, as well as nearly unlimited custom options.
*Loss of adhesion is covered for 10 years in coastal application.
A material with a high concentration of fiberglass and a strong resin, High-Density Fiberglass is a revolutionary material that echoes the look of other modern materials but with better thermal efficiency. In our Signature Modern collection, High-Density Fiberglass is used on the exterior of the windows and doors, while the interior is finished in a strong aluminum with a low-gloss finish.
Benefits of High-Density Fiberglass
- Like pultruded fiberglass, High-Density Fiberglass expands and contracts at a rate comparable to that of glass to help maintain performance over time
- Maintains shape and thermal performance even in demanding climates
- Enables proprietary frame design that offers strength and performance even at expansive sizes
The Marvin Materials Difference: High-Density Fiberglass
We believe that modern windows and doors should perform better, so we developed a High-Density Fiberglass and patent-pending frame design for our Signature Modern collection that reimagines how products in this size and style can perform. From exterior to interior, a solid piece of High-Density Fiberglass forms our unique new frame, which requires no additional material to aid in its thermal performance–a departure from our thermally broken competitors. Finished seamlessly to the interior with aluminum, we’re able to deliver exceptional thermal performance to enable strength at large sizes while preserving desirably narrow sight lines.
Ultrex® pultruded fiberglass, a material Marvin created over 20 years ago, was one of the first premium composite materials on the market. With its very low conductivity, fiberglass is one of the best insulators among window-frame materials. It shrinks and expands at the same rate as glass, making its air-seals as durable as the rest of the unit, and its longterm stability also ensures that fiberglass windows will operate like new for decades to come. Marvin offers two options for our pultruded fiberglass windows: all fiberglass (Essential) and fiberglass-clad wood (Elevate) that offers the warm look of real wood on the interior of the home.
Benefits of Pultruded Fiberglass
- Expands and contracts at virtually the same rate as glass, so it works with glass rather than against it
- Maintains shape even in harsh climates with regular exposure to temperature variation, wind, rain, or snow
- First and only composite to achieve AAMA 624 verification, meaning that the finish has passed numerous rigorous tests
- Resists chipping, chalking, or fading, even in darker hues
- Non-conductive and non-corrosive
- Engineered to maintain its look even years after installation
The Marvin Materials Difference: Ultrex Fiberglass
Ultrex pultruded fiberglass is a low-maintenance composite material with properties that set standards in toughness and longevity.
Not all composite materials are created equal. Some companies use materials like sawdust and vinyl to produce a composite material whose components have fundamentally different properties and performance values. Others use a manufacturing process that makes the materials more vulnerable to the adverse effects of hot temperatures.
For example, most plastics and vinyls are made using thermoplastic methods, which simply melt the material, pour it into a form and allow it to harden. When thermoplastic materials are then re-heated in the sun, they begin to re-melt. When it comes to products like windows and doors, this can mean that the product, especially in hot climates, begins to misfit the opening, making it hard to open and close, or that the seals become compromised in a relatively short period of time.
On the other hand, our pultruded fiberglass is a thermoset material created through a chemical process that changes the product at the molecular level. It is fundamentally more than the sum of its parts by the end of the manufacturing process. Made by saturating cables of fiberglass with resins, heating them until the two materials become one and then allowing the new material to cure, a thermoset fiberglass composite like Ultrex won’t soften or melt when exposed to environmental temperatures.
Ultrex’s enhanced performance over time and exceptional durability make it an ideal choice for customers seeking a strong, versatile, and long-lasting window or door.