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How to Choose the Best Replacement Windows

Feb 26, 2018

Spring is on the horizon, which is when many homeowners consider home updates. This season, why not consider replacement windows? Windows are a valuable investment for several reasons: old windows let in drafts and take a toll on your energy bills, and they can be hard to clean. New windows, on the other hand, elevate a room with fresh style and let sunlight and fresh air enter. Replacement windows improve your home’s value, improve your curb appeal, reduce your carbon foot print, and much more.

While windows are always a good home improvement, some homeowners become confused about the different options and types. Here’s what you need to know about replacement windows, your budget, and choosing the perfect style for your home:

Double-Hung Windows

Double-hung windows are one of the most popular options with homeowners because they provide superior flexibility. Unlike single-hung windows, which only open from the bottom, double-hung windows open from the top or bottom while remaining inside the frame, so they don’t protrude out to the exterior of the home. Double-hung windows work in virtually any home style and blend in seamlessly with your home’s architecture.

Casement Windows

Casement windows operate by cranking a handle, so the window turns outward. They may be hinged on the right or the left, depending on your preferences. Casement windows can add character and charm to your mid-century or rustic home. They’re also commonplace in kitchens.

Awning Windows

As the name suggests, awning windows open outward to let air into your home. They’re typically installed above, below, or alongside a stationary window. You often see awning windows in beach homes or rooms that contain full panels of glass to accommodate a stunning view.

Picture Window

These are large, stationary windows that often take up an entire wall. Picture windows accommodate a panoramic view of your environment, so they’re most common in vacation homes, homes with picturesque views, and rural areas.

Transom Windows

Transom windows are positioned above doors or windows to let in existing light. Although they can be operating, many transom windows are stationary.

Slider Windows

Slider windows function much like double-hung windows, but they open horizontally instead of vertically. They’re becoming increasingly common in contemporary, modern homes.

Bay Windows

Bay windows are an architectural feature that provide more interior space, since they protrude from the outside of the house. They are often a combination of stationary and operating elements, with casements or double-hung windows flanking the sides. Bay windows make for a charming addition (and bonus space) in your bedroom, office, or library.

Stationary Windows

Modern and contemporary homes are increasingly using stationary windows to allow extra light into a home. Stationary windows can be customized to fit your unique needs and aesthetic, such as in wrap-around or corner windows.

Jalousie Windows

Jalousie windows are an American style of window that was invented by Joseph W. Walker at the turn of the 20th century. You won’t see this style of window in very many homes; in fact, they’re almost exclusive to the East Coast. Jalousie windows are made of thin, staggered glass louvres that, when opened, provide air flow like a Venetian blind. Having these in your home could certainly be a good conversation starter. Keep in mind that Jalousie windows cannot seal in heat or cool air, so it’s a suitable solution in warmer or temperate climates, and in homes without air conditioning.

Hopper Windows

Lastly, hopper windows are essentially a casement window that’s been flipped on its side. It’s most common in basements, as they flip inward to maximize airflow in a constricted area. You might require hopper windows in your basement if you’re planning to remodel or finish your basement to accommodate more living space. The angle of the window also prevents dirt and debris from entering your home; a must because of their proximity to the ground. Hopper windows are also a good choice in small areas that require ventilation, like bathrooms.

As you can see, there are many different types of window styles, each serving their own purpose. Choosing replacement windows will involve a combination of your aesthetic, your budget, and the existing architecture of your home. Some people like the idea of adding a bay window and extending their living space; others prefer maximizing energy efficiency and the simplicity of double-hung windows. No matter which style you choose, windows are a valuable investment in your home.

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