The Glass Menagerie: Types of Windows

Casement Style Windows

Providing an unobstructed view, casement windows are hinged on one side, like a door, and a crank lets you open them outward.

When fully open, casements allow good ventilation and easy cleaning. They’re usually more airtight than double-hung because the sash locks against the frame to close.

The casements we tested excelled at keeping out cold air and rain and can be used in any area of the country.

Note, however, that window air conditioners cannot be installed in casement windows.

Double-Hung Windows

A popular choice. The lower inside sash slides up and an upper outside sash slides down, improving air circulation and making full screens ideal.

Double-hung are easy to clean since you can tilt the sash on any of the windows in our tests. They’re also a smart choice if you plan to install a window air conditioner, though most now have a fairly high trim on the sill that may require significant shimming to stabilize the air conditioner.

Some double-hung windows we tested are better at keeping out cold air or water. That’s important if you live in a chilly, windy area (hello, Enumclaw!) or if home is the Yakima panhandle or other rainy region.

Other Types

Single-Hung Windows
They look like double-hung, but only the bottom sash moves. (They usually cost less as a result.) The top sash is sealed to keep out cold air and water.                                               Awning-Style Windows
They’re hinged at the top and open outward. Like casements, the sash presses against the frame so they close very tightly.                                                                                                               Fixed Windows
These are used where lighting but not ventilation is important. They’re airtight and are available with decorative glass accents or in unusual shapes.

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