How To Choose a Style of Replacement Window the Perfectly Goes with the Architecture of Your Home

Replacement windows can be found in a wide variety of styles, but all the options can sometimes make it tricky for consumers to pick out the right style for their home home. Double hung or casement replacement windows are the most popular for use in residential dwellings, but sliding windows and bay or bow models are nice options as well. The casement window was invented over a century ago and has remained popular ever since. Such models swing out from the side like a door.

Double hung windows are another traditional favorite and this model has been around for several centuries. Fixed windows, also referred to as picture windows, feature a solid design and do not provide ventilation, but they do give an unobstructed view of the home’s surroundings. Sliding models, as their name implies, are not stationary, but rather slide back and forth in a similar motion to that of a movable patio door.

Because there are many models from which to choose, shoppers often find the selection process challenging. Below are some of the most popular types of homes in the New England area brought to you by Andersen window replacement of Cape Cod and some essential tips to make the task of choosing the best replacement windows a bit less daunting:

Victorian Style Windows

victorian windows new england

When replacing windows in an old, Victorian house, it is essential to maintain the home’s original architectural integrity. Double hung windows work well in such homes, but Victorian windows are typically larger than the size considered standard by most homeowners. Although it may be tempting to renovate the openings and install smaller windows, this often results in ruining or compromising the look of a traditional Victorian house.

As a second choice, casement windows also work well in a Victorian home. Models of this type swing out similar to that of a door. They are typically operated with a crank and were sometimes seen in original Victorian style dwellings, although they were never as popular as the classic double hung model. Well-positioned bay windows can be used to enhance the home’s original architecture, and most larger Victorian houses had at least one bay window on each floor with a window seat for reading or relaxing.

Colonial Style Windows

colonial replacement windows house

Colonial homes feature various styles depending on the early settlers by whom they were built. Most feature Spanish, French or Dutch influences and traditional Georgian or New England architecture. Similar to other classic style dwellings, colonial homes are usually fitted with multi-paned window units and in most cases, feature shutters. Consumers should keep in mind that ventilation is important in colonial style dwellings, as little or no space is typically left open in the floor plan of this style home. For this reason, double hung windows or sliding windows are usually recommended for colonial houses. Such models not only pair well with shutters, but also provide maximum ventilation. The majority of double hung models can be opened from the top or bottom sash, making them highly convenient as well. In addition, grids can be used to accent geometrical proportion and emphasize symmetry.

Cape Cod Style Windows

cape cod style home windows

Cape Cod homes originated in 17th century New England, and typically feature one-and-a-half stories and a roof with a steep pitch. Because of their classic style, sliding windows or double hung models are almost always recommended. Grids are typically added to match the multi-pane look and patios often feature French style sliding doors or French swinging doors.

A bay window or bow window can also be added for accent, although these were rarely seen originally in Cape Cod style homes. Shutters are almost always used with traditional Cape Cod dwellings, as well.

Ranch Style Windows

rancher home

Classic ranch homes are generally one story, low ceiling homes that emphasize horizontal patterns. Because no window has cleaner lines than the stationary, picture window, these were the mid-century favorite for virtually all ranch houses. However, casement replacement windows are also a terrific choice for a ranch or ramble style dwelling, as they can be treated to match essentially any architectural style.

Awnings are almost always seen on ranch homes, and horizontal grilles are a favored treatment among consumers who wish to enhance the overall look of a ranch-style dwelling.

Traditional Style Windows

Homeowners whose dwellings feature traditional styles have the option of selecting essentially any window model they find appealing. There are numerous styles from which to choose, but most fall into one of two categories: fixed or operable. Fixed units include the aforementioned picture windows, and of course, bay or bow models. Operable units include casement, double hung and sliding windows. Casement or double hung units are highly versatile with regard to ventilation, while picture windows offer the best view.

The model selected is primarily a matter of personal preference, although other factors also influence the homeowner’s decision. For example, if small children reside in the dwelling, casements are a good choice, as they allow fresh air to flow into the house, but can be locked in place at a width too narrow for a child to climb through. Similarly, a double hung window that tilts in for easy cleaning and maintenance may be chosen by a homeowner whose primary goal is convenience. Fortunately,¬† local retailers are familiar with the many types of homes in Philadelphia, and therefore¬† most carry a broad range of models.

Material Options

window material options for replacement

After a window style is selected, Philadelphia PA homeowners must then choose the kind of material they prefer, as well as the desired number of panes. Doubles panes are considered the best choice, as single panes offer little or no protection from extreme temperatures or damage. Triple panes are not usually needed unless fuel bills are problematic.

Fiberglass, wood, vinyl and aluminum are the four main window frame options available on today’s market. Wood is aesthetically appealing, while vinyl is more cost-effective than the other options. Fiberglass is somewhere in between wood and vinyl with regard to cost, but offers exceptional longevity. Vinyl-clad aluminum frames are also very popular. Aluminum frames are rarely a good option for residential dwellings, as aluminum is a poor insulator, unlike wood or vinyl.

It is always a good idea to comparison shop before purchasing replacement windows. Units that are perfect for one type of house may be all wrong for another. Therefore, taking an adequate amount of time and reviewing as many options as possible before making a purchase is in the best interest of all consumers. Regardless of which style a homeowner ultimately selects, the replacement windows Philadelphia PA residents invest in will add value and beauty to their homes for many future years.