How to Choose Replacement Windows for Your Home

Bay Windows
Picture Windows
Awning Windows
Double-Hung and Single-Hung Windows
Casement Windows
Sliding Windows

 

Old, outdated windows may be letting in too much of the summer sunlight. The excess sunlight or the summer heat could cause your air conditioning to work even harder and your energy bills to skyrocket.

Heat entering or escaping through old, leaky windows is responsible for 20% to 30% of your home’s heating or cooling bill. So, if you’re planning to modernize your home this summer, having your windows replaced is a good start.

In this article, we’ll help you explore possible replacement windows for your home and make the best choice. We’ll talk about the types of windows, their pros and cons, and their functions.

 

Bay Windows

Bay Windows

Bay windows were designed to be purely ornamental, blend with any home architecture, and add elegance to the structure. However, architects found new ways to make them functional.

Some add bay window seating in the interior recess to create a cozy spot for relaxation. The space can also be used as a small indoor garden, a breakfast nook, or a mini library since bay windows allow more sunlight to enter.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Bay windows can extend the room by up to three feet. The additional space, which you can turn into anything, can add value to your home. The elegant design plus the increase in floor area may fetch a higher price when you decide to sell your home.

Allowing more natural light to enter your home during summer is both a benefit and a disadvantage. Sunlight lifts the spirit and increases happy hormones, but it can also make the home warm. You can prevent this by choosing windows with high energy ratings against solar heat gains—or dressing up your windows with curtains or shades.

Types of Bay Windows

Bay windows have a variety of design options to fit your preferences, but all designs fall into four popular types:

  • Canted Bay Windows: These have the classic shape and look you expect to see in a bay window. They have a flat front and angled sides. Canted bay windows are usually found on the first level of houses.
  • Box Bay Windows: These are structurally similar to canted bay windows, but the flanking windows on both sides meet the front window at a 90-degree angle. This angle makes the window look like a box.
  • Oriel Windows: These are the oldest form of bay windows. They are built into the side of the house without touching the ground. For structural support, there’s usually a decorative bracket, stone, or masonry underneath the windows. Oriel windows can be built at any level of the house.
  • Circle Bay Windows: These are the less common types of windows. They are defined by large panes of glass on the three sides of the bay and additional panes above the windows. Circle bay windows typically feature intricate moldings and ornamental details not often found in other types of bay windows.

How Much Do Bay Windows Cost?

The average cost for a vinyl, medium-sized bay window replacement is $1,150 to $3,550. Installation and labor costs may range from $300 to $500, depending on your area.

 

Picture Windows

Picture Windows

Picture windows are big windows with fixed panes. They are stationary and cannot be opened. The main purpose of these fixtures is to showcase outdoor views without obstruction.

Due to the lack of mullions, picture windows frame the outside scenery of summer as if they are photographs or paintings on your wall.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Aside from its panoramic view of your surroundings, a picture window can be a great source of natural light. It can brighten up your mood and reduce reliance on artificial light. Picture windows can also be good insulators due to their sealed edges. It’s an affordable window option for many homeowners.

Picture windows’ disadvantage is mostly due to their unopenable design. You can’t easily open them to let the cool breeze in and encourage air circulation, potentially resulting in poor ventilation. If you plan to use picture windows on one side of a room, it would be best to have other window types you can open on the other side.

Picture windows frame the outside scenery of summer as if they are photographs or paintings on your wall.

Types of Picture Windows

Picture windows come in various shapes and sizes like round, octagon, and even triangle. And they have different types as well:

  • Glass Blocks: These are used in bathrooms or added as an exterior feature. You may opt for clear or translucent glass to adjust the level of privacy you require.
  • Bow Window: This type of window offers a curved design and a feeling of magnified space. They are often installed in a group of four panes along with operational windows for function and aesthetics.

How Much Do Picture Windows Cost?

While picture windows tend to be cheaper than most kinds of windows, the cost depends on the type of glass you select and how energy efficient it is. The cost of picture windows may range from $65 to $700, depending on the size.

 

Awning Windows

Awning windows pivot outwards on hinges mounted at the top of their frame. You can open and close the window with a crank located at the bottom. They are conventional, stylish, and secure.

They can be a great choice for bathrooms and kitchens.

Awning windows come in different sizes. With their size flexibility, they can be used in any room that requires horizontal or vertical orientation.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Awning windows are a good choice for someone looking to weatherproof a room. The upward hinge means that it opens on a slope. This helps keep the occasional summer rain or the winter snow out of the house even when the window is open.

You can open an awning window for ventilation without worrying about any rainwater getting inside the room. When you close it, the window becomes airtight, which helps maintain the cool air inside during warm weather.

Awning windows should not be used in high-traffic areas like patios, decks, porches, and sidewalks, though. It’s easy for someone to run into it, causing damage or injury. Their “slope” design also tends to catch dirt quickly, requiring you to clean them more often.

How Much Do Awning Windows Cost?

Awning window types are relatively less expensive than other windows since they are smaller in size. On average, awning windows go for $325 to $895 per window. You can expect to pay $38 per hour for labor and installation.

 

Double-Hung and Single-Hung Windows

double hung and single hung windows

What are single-hung windows?

These are the standard windows you see in most residential constructions. The bottom panel or sash can be moved vertically while the upper sash remains fixed. When the window is raised (open window), the upper sash gets partially obstructed.

Pros and Cons of Single-Hung Windows

  • They cost less: Single-hung windows remain popular because they are relatively inexpensive and are 20% cheaper than double-hung windows.
  • Few air leaks: This type of window fits more perfectly in their frames, allowing for fewer air leaks and maintaining the cool indoor temperature.
  • Repairs can be difficult: If the upper sash breaks, it cannot be removed. You’ll need a window glazier’s services to fix the glass in the upper sash.
  • Limited ventilation: With only one moving sash, single-hung windows can’t offer much in terms of ventilation.

What are double-hung windows?

Double-hung windows work similarly to single-hung types. So what is the difference between double-hung and single-hung windows? The first type allows you to open each sash, improving airflow and ventilation within the room.

The Pros and Cons of Double-Hung Windows

  • Versatile: Both window sashes can be moved up and down their tracks. This type of window provides homeowners more options to ventilate the house.
  • Easy to maintain: It’s possible to open and tilt each window’s sash inward, making it easier to clean. You can also remove the sashes. If one breaks, you can purchase a new sash and replace the old one.
  • Not energy efficient: Double-hung windows tend to lose energy efficiency over time, especially if both sashes and surrounding parts are not properly insulated.
  • Costs more: Double-hung windows have more functionality than most window types, so they usually cost more than your average window.

What is the Cost of Double-Hung And Single-Hung Windows?

The average cost of a single-hung window installation is $170 to $360 per window. Installation costs vary depending on the window’s brand, frame types, and local labor costs.

 

Casement Windows

Casement windows

Casement windows are hinged windows with a sash that opens or swings outwards either to the left or right. The sash locks against the frame when the window is closed, which creates an airtight fixture ideal for air-conditioned rooms.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Casement windows are known for their versatility and practicality. They can be made to fit any height and width. They also come in a variety of materials and finishes like PVC, timber, and aluminum.

Casement windows also offer an unobstructed view when it’s open or closed. The window can be angled slightly to catch breezes, which helps indoor air circulation.

Casement windows fit any window frame height or width. They come in various materials, too.

Types of Casement Windows

Casement windows come in three primary types, which contain the same components.

  • Single frame casement: The most commonly installed type, this casement window has a single frame. Inside the frame are panels of glass separated by wooden strips. Single frame casements are durable and last longer.
  • Double casement: Also called a French casement, double casement windows are hinged on the side and can swing out and meet in the middle. Double casements are easy to clean and maintain. When fully opened, it allows more light, ventilation, and an unobstructed view.
  • Push-out casement: This type comes in both single and double styles but uses a handle rather than a crank. Push-out casements are durable in any weather. They provide full air circulation when fully open and can be cleaned easily by tilting the window inwards.

What is the Cost of Installing Casement Windows?

The cost of installing casement windows depends on your area’s average pricing. You can expect to pay anywhere between $325 and $480, on average, per casement window. Adding labor and installation can increase spending to at least $560 for a new casement window.

 

Sliding Windows

sliding windows

Sliding window types are described as double-hung windows placed on their side. They have sashes that slide from side to side to provide a wide view of your surroundings. They are considered one of the best all-purpose windows.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Sliding windows are durable and efficient because they don’t use any cranks or mechanisms. Pulleys or springs eventually fail over time, but sliding windows do not rely on these components. They are easy to use and are cheaper than most other window types due to the simplicity of their design.

The main disadvantage of sliding windows is maintenance. Tracks can fill with dirt and debris, which eventually affects the way it slides. The tracks and surfaces need frequent cleaning to lessen the accumulation of dirt. But maintaining it from the outside can be challenging.

How Much Do Sliding Windows Cost?

The installation cost of sliding windows depends on the size, brand, and material you choose. The average cost is $378, while the higher-end version can reach $1,285.

 

Conclusion

Windows allow you to breathe fresh summer air and enjoy the beauty of your surroundings without stepping out of the house. Each type of window offers general and unique benefits worth considering.

With such a rich selection, choosing replacement windows to spruce up your home is tricky. But at the end of the day, what matters is having new windows that will improve your home’s comfort, convenience, appearance, and energy efficiency. This article provides enough information to get you started.

If you want to learn more about specific windows and whether they would be a good fit for your home refurbishing summer project, get in touch with G.H. Clark Contractors, Inc. We specialize in roofing, siding, and window replacement in Maryland. We are licensed, bonded, and insured.

Visit our service page for more information about our window replacement services, or contact us today to get a no-pressure estimate on your choice of windows.