Windows are a focal point of every home in terms of style and function. Not only does the style of window affect the overall look of your home, but it also changes factors such as ventilation, energy efficiency and maintenance.
There is a surprisingly large amount of window types to choose from when building or renovating your home and many advantages and disadvantages for each.
Continue reading Part 1 below for a good overview of some of the different types of windows available and the pros and cons of each for your new home renovations or addition in Ottawa. Also, be sure to check back next week for Part 2 of our window selections series in order to learn about some other key factors to consider when choosing your home windows in Ottawa.
Casement windows open in a similar fashion to doors, with a hinge on one side only that opens outwards. A crank on the interior of the house opens the window towards the outside and the window is held in the open position by a casement stay, which is a metal bar that extends along with the window to provide support.
Screens are found on the inside for casement windows and are therefore better protected from weather and debris and also easier to clean and remove if necessary.
Casement windows provide great ventilation as they can force air into the house due to the angle of the window. They are also very weather-tight due to the combination of the crank closure and tight seal.
There are some disadvantages to note for casement windows: the crank and casement stay are movable parts and are therefore features that can break over time and would require replacing.
In addition, since the window opens outwards, the edges can get exposed to the elements more frequently and can wear over time, especially if left open during a storm.
Single Hung and Double Hung Windows
Single hung windows have two sashes but only the bottom sash is operable. The top sash remains fixed while the bottom sash goes up and down. Often, the movable sash also has the ability to tilt inwards as well for easier cleaning.
Double hung windows have two sashes and both are operable and go up and down, with the ability to tilt the sashes inwards as well for cleaning.
Single Hung windows can be difficult to clean since the top sash is fixed and can’t be tilted. If this window is located on an upper floor, it becomes more complicated than just walking outside to clean the outer surface. Double hung windows, by contrast, are easier to clean in this regard since both sashes are movable and can be tilted inwards for cleaning from the inside.
As for ventilation, double hung windows are superior as they allow more openings for airflow, whereas single hung windows can only allow air through the bottom sash.
Slider windows operate on a track with the panes moving side to side horizontally. There are a few options when choosing a slider window: single sliders with only one movable sash, double sliders where both of the sashes move and 3-lite sliders where the middle pane is fixed and the two ends are operable.
Slider windows also come with an option for the movable sash to be tilted inwards for easier cleaning and ventilation.
One main advantage of slider windows is that they don’t open outwards and take up space that may be valuable in areas such as walkways, patios or porches. If considering basement renovations, they are also great for basement bedroom egress, allowing easy escape in case of fire as they don’t protrude outwards where they could become an obstacle to exiting the window or clearing the window well.
A main disadvantage of slider windows is that they don’t tilt inwards and therefore require a visit to the outside of the home, and potentially the use of a ladder, to clean all panes.
Come back and visit the blog next week for Part 2 of our Window Selections series as we will discuss single pane, double pane and triple pane window options, vinyl vs. aluminum windows and also U-values.