Window Styles and How They Work

Apr 20, 2021

Do you know the difference between the most popular window styles?

Here’s how to choose the right ones for your home.

Double-hung windows are consistently the most popular window style for replacement windows. They’re familiar, reliable, and can be built to fit most window openings. But as common as double-hung windows are, they aren’t the perfect solution for every window need. Casement windows and slider windows are two other workhorse window styles that fill a variety of needs. Here’s a little info about all three of these great window options (plus a few more!) to help you choose the right combination of window styles for your home. 

Custom Look Replacement Windows
Garden Kitchen Window

Understanding Your Favorite Window Styles

Before we get into comparing window styles, let’s start with a quick run-down of double-hung, casement, and sliders.
Double-Hung Windows

Double-Hung Windows

These are the window you see in most houses. They have two sashes that operate independently of each other by lifting from the bottom or pulling down from the top. The sashes open and close within the frame of the window, and you can open the window from both the top and bottom at the same time if you like. Because of the orientation of the sashes, double-hung windows are generally taller than they are wide.  

Casement Window

Casement Windows

Most casement windows are tall, narrow rectangles. Sometimes called “crank windows,” casements operate with the turn of a handle mounted on the frame. The crank allows the window sash to swing open, away from the house. A pair of casement windows that open away from each other are sometimes called “French casements” or “French windows,” because they operate like a French door.

Slider Window

Slider Windows

Usually wider than they are tall, slider windows have two sashes that can be opened and closed independently of each other by sliding in from the left or right side of the window.

Double-Hung vs. Casement vs. Slider: When to Use Each Window Style

Now that you know the difference between double-hungs, casements, and sliders, here are some recommendations on where each style works best in the home.  

  • Living Rooms, Bedrooms, Dining Rooms. Because they can be custom built to fit most window openings, double-hungs can work in almost any room. Their two-sash operation allows for ventilation, and safety latches let you to open the window a small amount to keep pets and children safe. 
  • Over the kitchen sink. This area often requires more reach and leverage to lift a window sash, making double-hung inconvenient. 
  • Shorter, Wide Openings. Double-hungs can be placed side-by-side for large, wide openings. But when the opening is shorter than it is wide, this becomes a design challenge. 
    • Alternative: Slider window 
  • High on the Wall. If you need an operable window higher on the wall, double-hungs may be too difficult to open.
  • Over a Kitchen Sink. Because they open with a crank, casements are more convenient to open in hard-to-reach places.  
  • Either End of a Bay or Bow Window. The symmetry of these multi-window arrangements are a great place to show off the beauty and functionality of casement windows. 
  • Areas with Less Clearance. Trees, fences or gates, mechanical equipment, and other obstructions can prevent casements from opening completely. Also, consider traffic patterns near these windows so no one bumps their head on the corner of an open casement window. 
    • Alternatives: Double-hung or slider window 
  • Children’s Bedrooms. Because casement windows open completely from top to bottom, they can pose more dangers to small children. Remember that window screens are not intended as safety devices. 
    • Alternative: Double-hung window with security latches 
  • Front Living Rooms. The front of the house often calls for the most dramatic window option. In many cases, a picture window works in the front room, but lacks that ability to open and ventilate the space. Slider windows offer both ventilation and curb appeal in those applications.  

  • Wider, Shorter Openings. Rather than placing two windows side-by-side, a slider window fills wider, shorter openings with a single operable window unit. 

  • Hard-to-Reach Places. Like double-hungs, sliders may require some leverage to open and close, which may present a challenge when placed high on a wall or behind the kitchen sink. 

Can I Replace One Window Style with Another?

In most cases, yes, we can swap out one window style for another to meet your window needs throughout your home. Each window style we offer has minimum and maximum size restrictions. Our project consultants will work with you to make sure your windows are measured properly, and that you’re educated on all the window styles available for each size window opening. 

At Improveit, we know double-hungs, casements, and sliders are some of the most popular window styles – but we also know there’s a perfect window style for every opening. To make sure you always have the best options available throughout your home, our Performax54 windows come in 10 different styles to suit every need!

Schedule a free consultation today to learn which ones will work best in every area of your home.  

We replaced several of our doublehung windows with sliding windows. Not having a horizontal frame going across the middle of the window has made a surprising difference. Our favorite is the casement window above the kitchen sink. It was a real struggle leaning over the sink and trying to raise the window up. With our new window we can open the entire window all the way with a few cranks of the handle. It’s a simple matter now to open and close all of our windows.Gary M. 

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