Window replacement may seem pretty straightforward. All you need to do is choose the same type of windows as you’ve always had and found someone to install them, right? Well, not exactly. While smaller than other essential components of the home – like your roof or siding, for instance – windows remain an integral part of your space, and picking out the right ones for your home is more important now than ever.
Windows, after all, has gone from being just openings that let in light and air to components that contribute greatly to your home’s beauty, comfort, and energy efficiency. That’s why, if you’re looking to install new ones, you’ll need to consider several things. One thing to think about is picking out the most suitable window styles for your home, as having the right windows will make short work of improving your home’s overall look and feel.
A Matter of Style
Windows should be chosen not just for how they look, per se, but also for their function. Some window styles perform better at specific tasks than others. Here are four reasons why you should keep the style in mind when planning your window replacement:
- You’ll want new windows you can open, close, and lock with relative ease. For this reason, choose a window style that allows for smoother operation. Two excellent options come to mind – sliding and double-hung windows. Instead of swinging outward or in, these windows glide easily along their frames (horizontally for sliding, vertically for double-hung). This makes sliding and double-hung units a safe choice along walkways and patios. Because they don’t swing in or out, there’s no risk of anyone accidentally slamming into them. This allows for smoother foot traffic and uninterrupted outdoor activities.
Sliding windows combine modern aesthetics and stress-free operation.
- When space is at a premium in your home, the right window style can help make it appear larger and brighter. You can, for example, add double-hung windows to some of your small-scale rooms. This window type has a large glass area that allows copious amounts of natural light to stream in, adding the illusion of space. Because this expansive glass also helps maximize your home’s viewing area, a double-hung window can help create a stronger connection between your indoor and outdoor spaces. It’s one effective way to bring the beauty of the outdoors in.
Alternatively, sliding windows will also do the trick. Place them in strategic areas of your home for a more spacious look. Sliding windows help to open up tight corners, making them a good choice over kitchen sinks and counters, above a desk in a study, or up high along your bathroom wall.
CLEAN AND CLASSIC. You’ll usually find double-hung windows gracing traditional homes, but they’re slowly gaining traction in contemporary-modern ones as well.
- As one of your home’s most visible design elements, your windows should always make a big impression. An excellent way to do this is to make sure that they match beautifully with the home’s architecture, staying true to existing historical elements. For instance, double-hung windows are traditionally associated with vintage homes. These include Colonial, Farmhouse, Cape Cod, Craftsman, and Ranch. The clean and simple design of double-hung windows makes them a match for practically any room in your home. This type of window lends a distinctive air to your exterior, which can be enhanced further with your choice of an appropriate grille pattern. With a bit of modification in your design choices, your home can adapt the old-world charm of a Colonial or the charming, picturesque look of a Prairie home.
If you have a Contemporary-Modern home, sliding windows will be a perfect fit. The sleek frames, expansive glass, and smooth operation of this type of window are attributes that lend themselves well to the streamlined appearance of this type of architecture. A row of sliding windows, in fact, can create a “wall of light” that seamlessly blurs the line between your home and the Oklahoma outdoors.
- Providing comfort is a window’s primary function. It adds life to your home’s interior by letting in natural light and air. When investing in replacement windows, consider a style that lets you maximize this function in the best way. Both sliding and double-hung windows are good for this. The former, for one, can be opened wide to direct cooling breezes into your home on warmer days.
Keep a more comfortable home with a window style that enhances your home’s comfort level.
Double-hung windows are the best at natural ventilation due to their design. All you need to do is open both top and bottom sashes at the same time. This allows warm, stale air to exit through the top sash, and cooler fresh air to enter the home through the bottom sash. This makes for improved indoor air quality and reduces the potential for excessive humidity and its accompanying health risks. Because both sliding and double-hung windows can keep your home cooler and more comfortable, you’ll also rely less on air conditioning. This keeps energy consumption down and helps reduce your energy costs.
Other Essentials to Consider
Standard sliding and double-hung windows, as you can tell, already offer a host of benefits. Advances in window manufacturing and technology, however, can further augment these rewarding features. With the following, you can ensure that your replacement windows can deliver superior protection and lasting performance:
- Framing Material. How long your windows last and how they perform will depend on the material they’re made of. There are a variety of window framing materials available today, each with its own pros and cons. Wood, for example, is a strong material with good insulative properties, but it does require constant maintenance. Vinyl is cost-effective and practically maintenance-free but warps easily when exposed to extreme thermal changes. The most popular choice these days is composite, which combines the best features of wood and vinyl, resulting in windows that remain durable and well-performing all year round. Because composite material keeps an airtight seal, it also helps prevent significant energy loss.
PRIORITIZING EFFICIENCY. Augment your chosen window style’s performance with an energy-efficient framing material and glass package.
- Glass Technology. The idea of achieving increased energy efficiency via home improvement projects is something that continues to pique the interest of many homeowners. In fact, better energy efficiencies have become one of the top priorities of many homeowners. A strong window framing material isn’t enough – you also need to take into account the glass component.
Most windows today come with low-emissive (Low-E) glass. This advanced material reduces radiant heat transfer into your home while protecting your interiors from sun damage. In fact, Low-E glass can help you keep a more energy-efficient home by improving your spaces’ thermal comfort, minus the high energy bills. To make sure that your replacement windows meet energy performance ratings, look for the white-and-blue ENERGY STAR label.
Make the most of your window replacement by identifying your home’s specific needs and choosing the window styles that can most closely address them. You should also hire a reliable window company that can ensure superior workmanship, while also offering a solid warranty coverage.
Follow the recommendations we’ve made in this article, and you’re sure to have your home improvement project run smoothly from start to finish.
As General Manager of Oklahoma City and Tulsa, Ryan Copple understands your home improvement needs. He has been in the industry for 20 years, and takes pride in always going the extra mile in taking care of Renewal by Andersen clients. Ryan makes sure that the whole remodeling experience is one of exceptional quality and satisfaction from start to finish.