Replacement Windows – 5 Types of Windows for Your Home
When you’re considering replacing existing windows in your home, you’ll have a number of options to choose from. The choice you make should take into account the degree of natural lighting you want to let in, the functionality you expect from your new windows, and how you will go about cleaning and maintaining them. Some windows open up very easily, while others don’t open at all, so it will be to your advantage to understand the specific characteristics and features of the most common window types, in order to make the most informed decision.
Single Hung Windows
Single hung windows look very much like double hung windows, except that the only sash which is operable is the lower one. Some types of single hung windows are also similar to double hung windows in that they tilt inward so that you can clean the exterior of the window. One big difference between the single hung window and the double hung version is that you won’t be able to take advantage of the airflow feature which double hung windows provide, because both sashes can be opened. You’ll still be able to open the lower sash, and that will allow exterior air to flow in, but you would lose the capability to have warm, interior air flowing out through the upper sash, as with a double hung window.
Double Hung Windows
These kinds of windows provide a classic look, and they are equipped with both upper and lower sashes. If you lower the top sash and raise the lower sash, the warmer air near the ceiling will be able to escape through the top portion of the window, while cooler air from the outside can come flooding in through the bottom portion of the window. Most double hung windows have sashes which incline inward, and this will make it very easy for you to clean exterior surfaces without having to go outside. This is especially important for second-story windows, because you might otherwise have to use a ladder to access them for cleaning. Double hung windows are an excellent choice for ease of maintenance, and for the functionality they provide in terms of increasing airflow in your home.
Sliding windows have one and possibly two panels which move horizontally, and which are secured to tracks on the top and bottom. This will allow you to open up half the window at any time, so that you can enjoy increased airflow. It’s also very easy to open this type of window when you’re looking for better ventilation, and it can be easy to perform cleaning and maintenance as well.
Picture windows are fixed-pane windows which are usually constructed without the use of glazing bars. The name ‘picture window’ comes from the fact that it has been purposely designed to provide a clear view of all the surroundings. With no obstructions creeping in, the window acts as a picture frame for the landscape outside your window. If there is a drawback to picture windows, it’s the fact that they are inoperable, and that they don’t provide any ventilation benefits. On the plus side, they tend to be extremely energy efficient, and are excellent at keeping conditioned air inside and unconditioned air outside. If the point of your window selection is to find a window which increases the natural lighting on the interior and provides exceptional exterior views, a picture window could be the perfect choice.
One of the identifying characteristics of the casement window is the ease with with which it can be opened and closed. Casement windows hinge at the side, so they can be opened outward to the right or left. They are sometimes also referred to as crank windows, because they can be opened using a handle which is attached to a supporting arm on the window. Casement windows are very often installed in situations where maximum ventilation is desirable, for instance in bathrooms and kitchens. Many homeowners choose to install them over the kitchen sink, which is something of an obstruction, but which can easily be overcome by using the crank handle on the casement window. You may also wish to install your crank window in a sitting room or a sunroom, because they provide excellent views of the outdoors.