Windows are more important than you think when it comes to energy savings. Inefficient windows are responsible for 90% of the heat entering your home.
In this light, choosing the right types of windows when refurbishing or constructing your home can have a huge impact on your future electricity bills.
Good-quality windows with cost-saving features can also increase the value of your property, so it’s worth researching your options before you start. Keep reading to discover which window type might suit your home best.
Things to Consider When Choosing Window Types
Aesthetics, security, energy efficiency, and durability are the major considerations to keep in mind when you’re searching for new windows. The following window features can affect these factors to varying degrees:
Window Opening Types
The way a window opens affects your home’s security and design. There are seven major options to choose from when it comes to picking windows for your home:
These windows have limited applications as they don’t open at all. Their major benefit is that they create a smooth aesthetic and allow uninterrupted views.
This type of window slides along a horizontal track. This helps save space and suits interior applications.
Another space saver, these windows fold inward like a book when you open them. Wider varieties may fold at several points, like an accordion.
Top-hung windows have upper hinges. They swing along a horizontal axis at the bottom.
They’re the best option for ventilation and a good choice security-wise, as they don’t open all the way.
Side Hung Windows
With a handle on one side and hinges on the other, these windows swing outward like a door. They’re a top choice for ventilation and allowing natural light to flood into a room.
These windows work like side-hung windows, except they open inward. They’re a good choice for preventing air leakage as the sash closes tightly against the frame.
Louvre windows have several small panes of glass or window blades that operate as shutters do. They are adjustable, so you can control how much light and air enter a room.
Types of Window Frames
The window frames you choose can affect the energy efficiency, durability, and security of your windows. These are the most common types of materials used for window frames:
Wooden window frames are beautiful and provide good insulation, but they’re an expensive, high-maintenance choice. These window frames can last up to 65 years as long as you treat them with a sealant every few years.
While wood’s insulating properties help reduce your need for climate control, they’re only environmentally friendly if you choose timber from sustainably managed forests.
On the other end of the scale, vinyl is a cheap choice for window frames. You can choose either all-vinyl or vinyl-clad window frames in a great variety of colours to match your building.
They tolerate extreme heat very well and can last for up to 40 years with very little maintenance. Unfortunately, manufacturing vinyl comes at a high environmental cost due to the many chemicals involved in its production.
Aluminium is one of the most popular choices for window frames in Australia. It’s durable, low-maintenance, and affordable.
High-quality aluminium frames are an energy-efficient choice, especially when paired with thermal break insulation.
Aluminium is an eco-friendly option and won’t warp, expand, or shrink regardless of the weather. Nowadays, you can choose from a range of styles and colours when shopping for aluminium window frames.
The Most Popular Window Types in Australia
When choosing windows for your home, you must check that they comply with Australian Standard AS2047. Windows with this stamp of approval are tested under local conditions to ensure their durability and performance.
Most common window styles and types take their name from their opening mechanisms, with a few variations.
Sliding windows and doors have panes of glass positioned side by side. When you want to open them, you slide them horizontally along a track.
Some styles offer two sliding sides, while others have one fixed panel. These windows work well in small spaces; they’re affordable, easy to operate, and present few mechanical problems.
Large panes of glass can pose a safety and security risk unless they’re fitted with security screens.
Aside from offering panoramic views, fixed windows are highly customizable. You can buy them in various shapes and sizes to complement your grand architectural or interior designs.
You can install fixed windows on their own or in tandem with operable windows. Fixed windows work very well as a floor-to-ceiling option for the attractive views outside your home, creating a sense of space and introducing natural light into your home or apartment.
To make the most of a fixed window, it’s best to ask your window installation company about fitting them with security window film that enhances safety and deflects heat.
Double-hung window frames have two large sashes that slide up and down on vertical tracks. Another space-saving option, double-hung windows offer excellent ventilation and easy operation.
These are an affordable choice, and the vertical tracks don’t gather much dirt, so they’re easy to clean. To ensure they last as long as possible, you should lubricate the tracks at least once a year.
The sash cords and counterbalance springs are prone to malfunctioning, and these windows can present a safety risk unless you install security screens. As these mechanisms age, the possibility of air leaks increases.
Sashless windows are the best of both worlds for those who desire both aesthetics and practicality. These designs offer all the views provided by fixed windows with the convenience of a double-hung opening mechanism.
These easily customisable windows maximise your views with a seamless, minimalist, and modern design. They allow plenty of natural light to enter your home, and you can open them to improve indoor ventilation.
They’re an expensive option, and you’ll need to keep them spotlessly clean to enjoy them at their best.
These popular traditional styles are a common feature of Australian households. They have hinges on the side, and they open wide to direct as much fresh air into your home as possible.
Most casement window setups have a winner at the base that opens the window sash to 90 degrees when you crank it. Since they open wide, it’s easy to clean casement windows from the inside, making them a good fit for upstairs rooms.
Their clean lines make them a good fit for most houses, and it’s easy to open and close them. Casement windows do a good job of sealing your home from the weather, too.
Faulty locks and hinges can become a security risk with these types of windows.
Like casement windows, awning windows work with a hinge mounted on the window frame. They open upward, creating an overhang above the window opening.
You can combine a row of small awning windows above a picture window or sliding windows for increased ventilation without increasing your security risk.
They’re great for ventilation, especially in rainy weather, as the awning design deflects raindrops. It’s difficult to climb in and out of an awning window, so it can deter burglars.
It’s more difficult to clean the outside of awning windows from the inside due to their unusual design.
Louvred windows, also known as slatted windows or jalousie windows, have a unique appearance that doesn’t suit the look of every home.
They’re a good choice for energy efficiency on the one hand, as they allow more precise control of airflow, but the many panes of glass reduce the insulating capacity of these windows.
It’s easy for criminals to lift the panes of glass out of the frames unless you install additional security features on your louvre windows. Most people use small louvre windows in low-risk areas like bathrooms, which need good ventilation.
Bi-fold windows are an excellent solution for bringing the outdoors inside, as they fold to the side when open. They take up little interior or exterior space while introducing plenty of light and air into your room.
These hinged windows work on a rugged roller system capable of withstanding years of use. The components rarely wear out, and it’s easy to lock these windows in place for security reasons.
They’re also low-maintenance, easy to clean, and ideal for use as part of a serving hatch when used alongside a patio or covered porch. Bi-fold windows offer many flexible design options if you have enough space to add many panels, as the panels can operate independently of one another.
Get the Right Window for You From Clearview Security
Despite their excellent benefits, all types of windows offer criminals access to your home. That’s why it’s important to take extra care to implement additional safety measures during the window installation process.
Clearview Security can assist you with all your needs when it comes to security windows, screens, and doors. We can create customised solutions to suit almost any window frame, ensuring the safety and well-being of your family.
Browse our selection of superior products or contact our team for assistance.