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Selecting The Right Windows

Selecting the right windows for your home can be very difficult given that there are many styles, types of materials, and features to choose from. In addition, since this project is a major investment and new windows are expected to last up to 20 years, doing some homework before you make a decision can save you money and a possible headache later on. Here is some advice on the types of windows available.

The first things that you need to think about when deciding on the right windows:

  • Size: The properly sized windows are those windows that are well suited to the space in which they will be installed and can provide an optimal level of ventilation to the space.
  • Shape: Windows that are short and wide will let in a wide but shallow amount of light. Windows that are tall and narrow let in a narrow but deep amount of light.
  • Security: Intruders prefer windows when trying to break into homes. Therefore, windows should be locked with a key when they are not being used.
  • Placement: Try to decide where your windows should go so that they can meet your needs at various times of the day. The east-facing windows will receive sun in the morning; west-facing windows will receive sun in the afternoon, and north-facing windows will get the majority of the light. South-facing windows won't receive a lot of light but they can still be used in order to ventilate the space.
  • Ventilation needs: As the common rule, every room in the house should have at least five to ten percent ventilation.
  • Glazing: There are many different types of glazing for your windows to select from including toughened glass, tinted, patterned, reflective, low-e, and laminated glass.
  • Energy Efficiency: Selecting energy-efficient windows is one of the top ways to guarantee that your home stays comfortable throughout the year; that you are lowering the costs of your energy bills and that you are lowering your home's impact on the environment.


contractor fixing a window with a cordless drill

Photo by Ksenia Chernaya:

Window Types a Window Specialist Would Install

There are several window types that are designed to fit various styles of homes.

Here are the most common types:

  • Sliding: Sliding windows will slide along a runner, horizontally. They are very versatile and are relatively low cost. Sliding windows are excellent for the majority of styles of homes, take up only a little space, and are low maintenance. They can be locked for additional security.
  • Fixed Pane: These windows that are unable to be opened are basically a sheet of window glass that has been set into a frame. Since they are stationary, they can be moulded into any shape or size.
  • Bi-fold: These windows function in a similar manner to bi-fold doors, with the windows being opened either inwards or outwards. These windows can allow a lot of light into the home and they are excellent for entertaining. They can also be locked.
  • Double-hung: These windows are common and offer two panels that can move independently of one another. These windows can be locked, allowed to let in as much air as you desire, and will allow you to insert flyscreens. They also permit the addition of window dressings.
  • Casement: These windows can open outwardly to as much as ninety degrees. The windows are then made to remain open by using a metal rob. Because they can be opened so widely, they can provide excellent ventilation. However, flyscreens for these types of windows have to be custom-made and these windows cannot be locked.
  • Louvers: These windows are panels are slatted glass that can turn to the desired position. They allow for maximum ventilation and they can even remain open while it is raining if turned correctly.

A window specialist can help you to select the right windows and the placements for those windows.


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