What Replacement Window Styles Should I Buy?


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What Replacement Window Styles Should I Buy?

There are many replacement window styles to choose from - common examples include fixed frames, double hungs, single hungs, tilt turns, casements, awnings and horizontal sliders. Less common styles include chord, lancet, egress, clerestory, dormers and hoppers. So which is the right style for your home? That all depends on what you are trying to accomplish - we'll try to help you narrow down your choices so that you can make the best selection for your home.

Cost Considerations

Price is nearly always at the top of most homeowner's list. For normal sized openings, you will need to select between some of the common examples above. The least expensive style in this group is the fixed frame (non movable) and horizontal sliders, followed by the single hungs. Double hungs will be more slightly more expensive than single hungs and tilt turns slightly more than double hungs - the most expensive options in this category will be awnings and hoppers (due to the fact that fewer manufacturers produce them) and finally casements, which will be most expensive. Bays and bows are reserved for large openings, although double casements may fit in these openings and will certainly save you some money. The more specialized shapes - chords, hexagons, arched tops, etc. will frequently be custom orders and more expensive than the more standard shapes.


How a particular window looks should certainly play a role in what type of window goes into a home. Lots of homeowners opt for double hungs or casements in more prominent spots because these are often regarded as a classic, nice looking stle. Horizontal sliders are often a good choice for bedrooms because they are less often seen, less expensive and provide a lot of light and good ventilation. Bays, bows and specialty shaped windows certainly make a strong statement from an aesthetic standpoint - they can add stunning aspects to a home from both the interior and the exterior - but they come at a price.


This is also an important consideration and one that often gets overlooked. From a functional standpoint, windows do three things; they insulate a home, provide light into the room and also provide ventilation. When it comes to insulation and energy efficiency, the biggest factor is how well the window is made and installed - however, the style will also play a role (although less important). Fixed frame windows will be most energy efficient because they don't open and therefore the glazing and seals do not get tested over time. Casements, double hungs and awnings get good grades in this category and single hungs, hoppers and horizontal sliders are usually the worst performers.

Additional Factors

Rooms that tend to be dark should have larger windows to let in more light - horizontal sliders or large fixed frame windows are great for this. Some homeowners want to take advantages of afternoon breezes to cool their homes and have a nice refreshing air flow. Horizontal sliders, casements and double hungs are excellent in terms of ventilation. Awnings, hoppers and single frames do an okay job and fixed frames obviously do not let in any breeze. Decide which rooms face the prevailing directions for windows and plan accordingly.