How to Choose the Right Window Style for Your Home

Windows are a vital part of how you use your home and interact with the outside environment. When choosing new windows for your home, you may be surprised to learn just how many options are available. There are different uses and styles that work in various areas of the house.

Window styles vary greatly in how they open (if at all) and how that opening affects your home. The likelihood that you’ll choose the same kind of window for each and every window opening is low. Learn more about how to choose the right window style for your home this year.

Sliding Window Style Choices

While there are many different options, these window styles are often the most used and ordered by homeowners.

Single-Hung Windows

A single-hung window has an upper and lower sash, or panes, of glass. The top glass pane is fixed and doesn’t move, while the bottom pane moves up and down. Single-hung windows have vertical tracks where the bottom sash slides up or down. This type of window is great for spaces that don’t have a lot of outside space or for a simple and clean profile.

Many newer homes have single-hung windows because they offer an easy way to open the window without the extra cost of a double-hung window. Single-hung windows are often a less expensive option with many varieties of color and materials.

Double-Hung Windows

Many classic homes, like farmhouses or bungalows, may have double-hung windows instead. This window style option is much like a single hung window, except that the upper sash can also move up or down. Double-hung windows are great for homes that want to use outside air to cool down the house instead of turning on the air conditioning. Lower sashes are opened in the morning to let in cool air, while top sashes are opened at night to provide a place for warm air to escape.

Double-hung windows can be more expensive than their single-hung counterparts because of the additional track and movement needed. The window also secures in the middle, where the sashes meet.

Sliding Windows

These windows slide along a horizontal track instead of a vertical one like single or double-hung windows. Sliding windows are often used in basements or smaller areas where the view doesn’t matter as much. Sliding windows are often quite budget-friendly, however, given their minimal mechanical components.

A sliding window seen over a dining room



Hinged Window Styles

There are a few window styles that require extra space either inside or outside of the home for the window to open correctly.

Casement Windows

When looking for excellent ventilation, a casement window may be your best bet. These windows open along a hinged edge like a door and are used to catch a breeze and direct it into the house. The window could open outward or inward, depending on the style, and they often include a crank that is needed to slowly push the window in the preferred direction. A handle lock is also used to secure the closed window in place.

While in use, casement windows can be set to multiple positions, from barely cracked to fully open. Most homeowners choose to use casement windows on the upper levels of a home as well. The window itself also may become easily damaged due to exposure if the window cranks outside.

Several casement windows looking out over a grassy yard


Awning Windows

Awning windows provide ventilation without worrying about rain getting in. Awning windows also move outward like casement windows, but they hinge at the top. When opened, the window pivots outward and acts as a cover to protect the interior from moisture.

Awning windows don’t open very much, making them a good option for lower-level windows in terms of security.

Fixed Window Styles

There are a few places in your home where you may want to access outside light but don’t need (or want) any extra ventilation.

Picture Windows

Choose a picture window for your home when you don’t want anything to obstruct the gorgeous view. Picture windows are often large and used in great rooms or sitting areas where you can enjoy the view. They don’t have any opening mechanisms and flood the space with natural light.

Bay Windows

Want to enjoy the beauty of the outdoors while still being inside? Consider a bay window that allows you to sit beyond your home’s outline. Bay windows are set into angled frames and often are accompanied by a built-in bench seat to enjoy the natural light and beauty.

A bay window showcased in a living area

Transom Windows

Often used in bathrooms or hallways, transom windows are smaller fixed windows that focus on natural light. Transom windows are usually installed toward the upper part of a wall, where they can add light while also keeping the room private from outsiders. Transom windows can also be installed above doors or another set of windows as well.

Skylights and Solar Tubes

Do you want to add natural light but don’t have access to a side wall? Consider choosing a skylight or solar tube instead. These windows are installed along the home’s roofline and provide extra natural light from above. Skylights are larger window areas set directly into the roof, while solar tubes offer a smaller amount of light from a tube that spans from the ceiling to the roofline farther above. While both of these options provide great natural light, they are prone to leaking in wet climates that see a lot of rain or snow.

There are so many options when it comes to choosing the right window style for your home. Contact California Window and Door for more information on which option is best for your home today!

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