What are the Different Types of Windows?Finding the perfect windows for your home isn’t as easy as it seems. There are so many different options available today that it can be pretty overwhelming to try to pick out the right one for your needs. Windows can be square, rectangular, octagonal and even triangular and that’s just the shape. Some windows open to the side, some slide up and others tip up like a canopy. Each of these diverse types of windows offer something special to a home, and only a homeowner that understands their options can make an informed decision to choose the right windows.
Choosing Windows Based on CostIf you’re trying to pick out the most affordable windows you’ll want to go with single hung over double hung. They are more affordable overall and most people are used to them since they are the more common window choice. Typically, single hung windows are about 20% more affordable than double hung windows.
Choosing Windows Based on UtilityDouble hung windows are the better option from a utility and maintenance standpoint. They are more versatile and easier to clean. You can get to each sash easily and clean both the outside and inside of the window comfortably from inside your home. You can also tilt the windows to allow a breeze in more effectively than you can with single hung windows.
The Different Types of Windows
Specialty WindowsWhile single hung and double hung windows are the standard interior options, they are not the only options available for you to adorn your home with. There are other choices that you can pick from as well when you’re looking for different styles and improvements to make.
Double Hung versus Single HungDouble Hung and single hung windows are two of the most common options that you’ll see on any home today. There is one major difference between single hung and double hung windows and that’s how the different window sections move. In single hung windows the bottom window panel or lower sash moves up and down and the upper sash remains stationary. This means that when you open the window the upper sash is covered on the inside. In a double hung window both upper and lower sash can be lowered and raised. Each one can be tilted as well.
Bay or Bow WindowsWhen you want a window that projects out of your home to add a bit of additional floor space you want either bay or bow windows. Each of these windows comes out of the exterior wall and creates a small shelf in the home. The larger the window is the larger the shelf is. The windows serve as a nice architectural accent. Bay Windows are usually a better fit for modern homes and bow windows better for older Victorian style homes. Bay windows rely on flat windows set into an angled frame that’s built out of the house. In fact a professional can construct a custom bay window using standard double or single hung windows in a row. Bow windows on the other hand rely on custom curved windows that come together to create a circular outcropping in the home. Both bay and bow windows are nice accents on a home, but it’s important to consider the cost of the window before making a decision. Consider that bay windows are much more affordable than bow windows. In fact, bow windows are 2.5 times the price of a similar sized bay window in most instances. Bay windows also provide more shelf space within the home than bow windows do and many people even create a window seat with their bay windows. In the end it really comes down to personal style preference and budget.
Skylight WindowsIf you’re interested in adding some light in the center of a home with limited options for exterior walls, a skylight is an excellent option. It’s essentially a window for your roof and it installs similarly to a roof vent. Some skylights open and close to allow ventilation, but most remain closed and simply serve the main purpose of bringing additional light into a home, but they also provide a nice way to look up at the stars, and can serve as attic ventilation in an attic-renovated bathroom. Skylights must be installed by a professional and they are one of the more expensive window types available, but when you want light from your roof coming in, they are really one of your only options.
Glass Block WindowsGlass Block Windows are typically just accents added to a section of the home to add light flow. They are most commonly purchased frosted or with designs built into the glass to provide light while also offering privacy. This makes them an ideal candidate for use in bathrooms, basements and other private spaces. When you just want a sturdy window that isn’t going to move, but you still want to be able to see out of it the windows come in clear view as well. They are a permanent solution and can’t be opened or closed. Glass block windows are around the same price as single hung windows, but they’re usually used for different projects than what single hung windows are.
Garden WindowsGarden Windows are essentially mini bay windows that are meant for plants. They’re like little tiny greenhouses that you add to the side of your home making them incredibly accessible. These windows will hold many different plants, and many will even accommodate shelves so that you can add in several plants per window. Since plants need sunlight to grow, it’s only natural to create a plant growing space in your home out of an advanced window setup like a garden window.
Round, half round, elliptical, or oval—the round window category encompasses many different shapes that add a note of architectural interest to your home. In particular, round windows allow you to give your space a nod to historical decor, such as Victorian or Gothic era structures.
Many round windows make perfect companions for glass doors or larger, square windows. Or they can be decked out with decorative grilles and stained glass to transform them into a show-stopping design focal point. However, adding these kinds of features will make your window replacement more expensive. Still, most will provide a one-of-a-kind look, imbuing historical homes with period-era accuracy.