Whether you’re building a new house or renovating an existing home, the process of deciding between the best types of windows for your home doesn’t have to be intimidating. All windows fall into just a few basic categories. Let’s take a look at some of the more popular window types used in a home so you’ll be able to decide which will work best for you.
Single and Double-Hung Windows
Single and double-hung windows are by far the more common windows you’re likely to encounter in 20th and 21st-century homes built in the United States and other parts of the western hemisphere.
The windows consist of two large panels of glass stacked vertically. The panels move up and down within vertical tracks. There is a separate track of each panel of glass.
The single and double-hung windows differ only in the number of panels that you can slide open. In single-hung windows, only the bottom panel slides, while in double-hung windows, both panels move.
Naturally, single-hung windows are typically less expensive than their double-hung counterparts. Some owners opt for single-hung windows to save money for other aspects of their home build or renovation. However, even those who can afford double-hung windows see an advantage in choosing the single-hung variety.
Because the upper panel of glass in a single-hung window is stationary, it’s notably energy efficient due to the permanent seal around the window sash. So, single-hung windows can save you money upfront as well as in the long run by cutting heating and cooling costs.
Instead of moving vertically like single and double-hung windows, slider windows move horizontally. The concept is simple. Think of how patio doors slide open and closed along a horizontal track, and you’ll grasp the basic working principle of slider windows.
You may have seen slider windows in the homes of your grandparents or great-grandparents. They were common in the suburban homes built in the mid-twentieth century.
The enduring legacy of the aesthetic of that time has led many young homeowners to purchase and renovate homes from that period. To stay in line with the original vision of its architect, homeowners tend to keep their slide windows, just replacing them as necessary with more modern versions from places like https://clearmaxwindows.com/.
Among sliders, there are subcategories of different types of windows for your home. Some slider windows have two panels of glass which can both be opened. Others have three panels of glass. The outer two panels slide while the larger center panel remains fixed.
Awning windows are popular choices for areas where it isn’t practical or sometimes even possible to install a more traditional window. You can immediately recognize an awning window by the way it opens.
Often you open an awning window by turning a crank. However, you can get awning windows that open with a handle or simply by pushing them open.
They open with the bottom of the window tilted outward while the top of the window remains in place where it’s hinged. In that open position, the window bears the unmistakable shape of those awnings often seen over windows, doors, and sidewalk cafes.
Homeowners typically use awning windows in their basement. Of course, they can be used anywhere in the home where needed, such as in the kitchen or bathroom. Awning windows are wider than they are tall, so builders tend to place them where vertical space is limited but horizontal space is readily available.
The kitchen and bathroom are also where you’re likely to see casement windows. They’re suitable for areas where opening a double or single-hung window would be difficult.
Casement windows, like awning windows, often open by turning a crank but can also open with a handle. The primary difference between the two types of windows is that casement windows swing open like traditional doors. One side remains fixed and hinged while the opposite side opens outward.
Casement windows are taller than they are wide. Their shape allows you to bring sunlight and fresh air into a room where there’s little distance between walls of a room, but floor-to-ceiling space is not an issue.
A homeowner may favor the slim profile of these types of window designs for their home because their relative narrowness is less inviting to thieves than large traditional windows.
You can also make your casement windows blend in with your traditional home’s architectural details by ordering them with vertical dividers so that they’ll look more like older-style windows. In this way, you get to use all types of windows for your home without being obvious that you’re using different types of windows.
When you see those stunning pictures of the homes of celebrities, there’s often a giant picture window framing an ocean, majestic mountains, or woodland. In other words, the picture window knows how to live up to its name.
Architects typically use picture windows to make a bold statement in the living room or maybe the primary bedroom or the kitchen. But you have no doubt also seen celebrity homes with huge picture windows behind their bathtubs. Of course, celebrities aren’t generally known for their shyness.
You can also get picture windows in smaller sizes to accommodate your needs. For example, if you have a room that needs more sun but there’s no room for a standard-sized window, you might consider a series of small picture windows. In some modern homes, you can spot small picture windows high above kitchen cabinets.
Picture windows are what are known as fixed windows. They don’t open. Other fixed windows include skylights and entry windows above and to the side of the front door.
What you lose in air circulation with picture windows you could gain in energy efficiency. Since a picture window doesn’t open, it can be tightly sealed to prevent the loss of your cooled or heated indoor air.
Choosing the Preferred Types of Windows for Your Home
Which types of windows for your home do you now think you’ll choose? Are you leaning toward single-hung, casement, awning, slider, or picture windows? As you’ve seen, once you group windows by their design and functionality, they become much easier to not only identify but also select.
For more helpful tips on upgrading your home, check out additional entries on our blog.