Replacing outdated windows is an excellent way to improve your home’s energy efficiency and appearance. Choosing the most appropriate window style is an important first step in the window replacement process. If you’re ready to replace your existing windows or are designing a new home, keep these useful tips in mind when making your choices.
Functional Considerations When Choosing Window Styles
Different windows provide different benefits. As you choose your new replacement windows, think about each one you’re replacing and what purpose the new one will serve, even if it’s just from an aesthetic point of view. For instance, slider windows beautifully complement ranch-style homes but look out of place on the front of a Victorian. If you live in a rainy area, hopper windows are probably not a good idea. Start by asking yourself these five questions:
- Which direction does my home face?
- Do I want to replace the existing windows with new ones that are the same size?
- Will I be adding more windows than I currently have?
- Do I want any custom-sized windows?
- Do I need all the new windows to provide ventilation, or will there also be some fixed models like picture and bow windows?
Keep in mind that aesthetically, windows make both an exterior and interior impact.
- While you have a lot more creative freedom with rear-facing windows, those on the front of your house should improve its curb appeal and make the house look welcoming.
- Interior-wise, think about what you wish each window to do. People often want plenty of natural light and airflow in the kitchen. However, in family rooms and dens with big-screen monitors, you might want to consider how much glare there will be.
Lastly, to ensure you get maximum energy efficiency from your new windows, keep your home’s orientation to the sun and wind in mind. For example, placing ventilating or operable windows in areas where the wind blows most can help keep your home cooler and save you on air-conditioning costs. In rooms that get a lot of sun, low-E windows block up to 75% of UV rays, protecting furniture, carpets, and artwork from fading. Low-Es can also reduce energy loss by 30% to 50%.
Choosing Replacement Windows That Complement Your Home’s Architecture
While there are no hard and fast rules about which windows go best with different architectural styles, there’s no denying some look better than others. The choice is always yours!
Here’s a brief guide to choosing windows for common home architectural styles.
- With their steep roofs and side gables, Cape Cod homes traditionally sport multi-pane, double-hung windows with shutters. Casement windows are another great choice. Accent windows might include sidelights and transoms.
- Craftsman bungalows feature deep porches, mixed material facades, and shallow-pitched roofs. Vertically proportioned double-hung and casement windows, typically placed on either side of a fireplace, are popular choices for bungalows. Picture, dormer, and transom windows are appealing accent window styles.
- Two-story homes such as Georgian Federals generally have two or more chimneys, medium pitched roofs, and multi-panel front doors. Upper-floor windows in these homes tend to be shorter and narrower than those on the ground level. Double-hung windows with Colonial grids are the window of choice, with half-circle transoms, oval windows, and quarter-circle windows on either side of the chimney commonly seen.
- Industrial modern houses have simple asymmetrical forms, flat roofs, and varied-material facades. Casement and picture windows tend to emphasize the glass over sashes and grids. And while accent windows aren’t generally used with this architectural style, custom shapes often are.
- Arched entries, asymmetrical window compositions, and steeply pitched roofs define Tudor homes. Diamond and Colonial pattern grids are used with casement, bay, and double-hung windows. Transom and smaller casement windows are attractive accent window styles.
Zen Windows: Always the Right Choice
With three product lines to choose from and various options and features available, Zen Windows’ precision-built, energy-efficient, and affordable replacement windows offer versatility, durability, and reliability few other windows can match. You’re sure to find one or more versions that match your home’s architecture and your personal style.
Find your nearest location and start a conversation with our team today!