Window Info -
Choosing A Window
|Choosing Your Window: This is a
big decision, as there are countless types and brands of
windows. Don’t go cheap. Paying a little more for a quality
window will make up in years of use. Before you begin, you
will have to decide what style of window you want. Casement
windows crank out and allow the air to enter your home from
the entire span of the window. Awning windows open only on
the bottom pane and open out from the lower part of the
window. The advantage of awning windows is you can leave
your windows open in the rain and still get a good air flow
into your home. Sliders are self-descriptive, and slide to
one side to open. Double hung windows slide up to open.
Many double hung and awning windows provide tilt wash
options, which allow you to tilt your window in any
direction to wash the outside. This is a good option,
especially if your windows will need a ladder to access
Window Insulation Value: Standard single pane windows
are inexpensive, but they have very little insulating value.
Double or triple pane windows have 2 or 3 panes of glass
with air or gas filled spaces between the panes. It is
important to check on the width of the air spaces between
the panes. Spaces too wide or too narrow will have lower R
values, allowing heat to transfer in or out. One half inch
is the proper air space allowed between pain. Even as little
as 1/8” more or less can make a big difference in your R
Window frames come in a variety of
Wood: Wood is flexible in size and shape, but
is not as efficient as vinyl and fiberglass. You may choose
wood for its natural look, but keep in mind, upkeep on wood
windows can be daunting, as they are exposed to sun and rain
constantly; and will need painting or staining at least
every few years.
Aluminum: Aluminum windows has low
maintenance, but is also not very efficient.
Vinyl: Vinyl windows will cost more, but there
is virtually no maintenance involved and they are energy
Choosing A Window Size: When choosing the size of
your window, you will be picking the rough opening of your
window frame. Keep in mind you will be losing 1 ½ to 2” of
window space to allow for shims, casing, and insulation; so
your window will actually be smaller than the rough opening
space. Keep your rough opening spaces in even numbers, such
as 2x3 feet or 3x4 feet. Odd sizes will make it hard for you
to find blinds or curtains in stock. For example, a standard
window blind is 32 ¾” wide, which will fit a window with a 3
foot rough opening space.
Another thing to consider is cost of the window. You can
choose 3 four foot wide windows and install them with a 4
inch space between them for less cost than a 12 foot window.
Your view is relatively the same.
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