Types of Windows to Consider for your Home
Windows are the eyes to the world from your home. But when you look closely, you will notice that one window design is not a fit for all homes. Windows vary in the amount of ventilation, cost, purpose, and natural light. But also, consider energy efficiency, frame materials, and glazing options when shopping for new home windows.
Some homeowners prefer a blending of different window styles in a single home unit. But it is not always wise. It may cause a disjointed appearance. You do not want your house to stand out for the wrong reasons.
Whether it is for new construction or remodeling, the ideal type of windows should meet your needs and be a good return on investment. Fiber glass windows tick all the right boxes.
Casement windows, or crank windows, will typically have hinges at the top and bottom. They open horizontally. One side of the window will crank open like a door while the other remains stationary. These windows have a solid and watertight seal with a swing function that allows good airflow into the house.
When expertly positioned, casement windows add a more modern touch to your home, especially when built-in stained fiberglass.
Consider the design of your home before you pick casement windows. The windows should match with the side style of your home when fully open. Fiber glass windows outperform others such as wood and vinyl composites.
Casement windows are as popular as double-hung windows.
Benefits of Casement Windows
- Generally has a tight window seal to keep drafts out
- Effective in catching cooling air from outside
- Relatively secure against break-ins
Shortcomings of Casement Windows
Cranking mechanisms will wear and tear depending on the material
Slider windows are side-by-side windows that slide along the top and bottom horizontal tracks. The sliding can either be for one or both windows.
This style can allow much-improved airflow into the living spaces. Slider windows don’t have mechanical components, which helps with maintenance. It is even better if the slider windows are made from lightweight fiberglass.
Typically, this type is popular with mid-century modern homes and is a good choice if you open and close the windows frequently.
Benefits of Slider Windows
- The windows are quite durable
- They tend to be more cost-friendly than other types of windows
Shortcomings of Slider Windows
- Limited sizes and shapes
- Cleaning outside may be a challenge
Double-Hung or Single-Hung
Double-hung windows are the most likely types that you are familiar with. They feature one or two large frame units enclosing glass panels and slide up and down the vertical tracks.
Double-hung style is more common in classic traditional homes. But you will still find them in homes with a traditional-modern styling.
A simple variation of this type will include subdivided sashes with smaller panes and larger frames with vertical and horizontal grids of muntin. In pricier or older windows, the muntin may hold individual glass panels.
Most of the modern muntin windows use plastic or wooden pieces to create a grill illusion. Muntin windows are not too different from the normal double-hung and will function the same way. But they have a more old-style classic touch. Fiber glass windows in this style achieve more than what the plastic or wooden pieces do to affect appeal and durability greatly.
Double-hung or single-hung windows are easy to replace and offer good access when cleaning. Give the windows proper maintenance, and they will function as desired. With double-hung, a newer material such as fiberglass will look as beautiful as wood and offer more durability.
Benefits of Double-Hung and Single-Hung Windows
- This type of windows is generally available and therefore quite affordable
- Double-hung windows are easy to operate
- Vertical tracks that don’t quickly fill up with dirt and debris
Shortcomings of Double-Hung and Single-Hung Windows
- Sash cords or counterbalance springs will eventually wear out
- They may require a bit more effort to open and close
The mechanical cranks that open and close the awning windows are much similar to casement windows. The only difference is that awning windows have a fixed top edge, open from the bottom, and pivots outwards and up.
Applications for the awning windows are basements and other level windows where there’s a need to open the windows even when it’s raining. You can pair awning windows with fixed windows at the top or below. Awning windows need strong and lightweight material to resist the abuse of elements and stand the test of time.
Benefits of Awning Windows
- You can leave the windows open even when it’s raining
- Fairly secure against intrusions
- An easy to operate the crank mechanism
Shortcomings of Awning Windows
Not effective in capturing fresh air from outside
A fixed window usually has a window frame with a glass pane that does not open or close in any way. Fixed windows mainly provide a view in spaces or add the wow factor where ventilation is not critical. There is no airflow.
With a watertight seal and no opening mechanism, the upkeep is effortless. But compared to solid walls, the fixed windows are not exactly energy efficient. Fiber glass windows provide the strength of steel while also providing the much-needed aesthetics.
Benefits of Fixed Windows
- They are permanently sealed and provide better energy savings than other types
- The windows are cheaper than other types
Shortcomings of Fixed Windows
- The windows may not be very comfortable in warmer climates
- There is no way to capture fresh air
Roof windows are installed on the roof to introduce light into upstairs or attic spaces. It can either be a fixed window or one that can easily open to let in air. Skylight or roof windows Replacement Windows and Siding in Des Moines, IA, require professional installation.
Your choice of roof windows should be fiber glass windows for their low conductivity. Homes retain more energy and reduce your energy bills.
Benefits of Roof Windows
- Are an excellent way to add ventilation and light in some spaces
- Add a unique appeal to the attic rooms
Shortcomings of Roof Windows
Their direct exposure to rain and sun significantly affect their durability
Grouped windows that extend from the house provide an exciting architectural design feature. Bay windows resemble bow windows, but the windows meet at angles for the bay, and the bow has a curved design without the angles.
The expansion and shrinking in the face of different weather patterns can break the windows. Bay windows are very exposed to the elements.
In such a case, fiberglass is the best choice as it has low thermal expansion.
Benefits of Bay Windows
- An interesting design
- Add reasonable amounts of natural light
Shortcomings of Bay Windows
Require professional installation
Why Choose Fiber Glass Windows?
Common materials for residential windows are wood, vinyl, and fiberglass. You can choose metal Clad Wood or Solid Wood for the rustic appeal, but it’s usually a bit expensive. Fiberglass windows will still give you the aesthetic wooden appeal when stained and go the distance in durability.
The high-demand fiber glass windows endure abuse from the elements and do not show age or wear. Fiberglass has the strength of steel and is several times more durable than vinyl. If you live in coastal areas characterized by high humidity, your choice of window materials is usually limited.
But fiberglass windows do not rot, corrode, or rust. They resist contracting and expanding based on temperature changes. This heat resistance and low conductivity of fiberglass optimize its energy efficiency and ensure energy savings.
In addition, fiberglass has a smooth and appealing finish that stays beautiful for longer.
With high-density fiberglass:
- The thermal performance and shape is consistent
- Numerous different finishing and color options
- Contracts and expands at the same rate as glass for consistent performance over time
- Customizable to allow different designs
If you are looking for a new window or replacement windows in Des Moines, IA, and surrounding areas, please give us a call. Learn More about our replacement window services.