When choosing windows for your home, it's important to strike a balance between form and function. The options you have for your window's form, placement, and material are practically endless. Usually, it's a compromise between practical needs and aesthetic preferences. Big panes of glass, for instance, let in natural light but can also let in prying eyes and allow for too much heat to be brought in or lost.
It's possible that a window that's too small won't let in enough light, won't allow for enough heat to be gained, and won't let you appreciate the view outside. Generally speaking, you want more glass on the north side of your home rather than the south. The demands for solar heat gain and views, however, can be oriented in radically different ways from one location to the next. For instance, at least half of the glass in a window must provide an unobstructed view of the outdoors for a room to be considered habitable. Double glazing is quickly replacing single pane glass as the standard for residential windows as people become more conscious of the need to reduce their carbon footprint. Decide what kind of glass you want before deciding on a frame construction material because the constraints of glazing dictate the size limitations of a window.
Types Of Windows
Extending from an exterior wall is the Bay of Box window. They are great for creating more open floor plan or for placing above a kitchen island. Because of their outward design, they are able to absorb more light and heat. With the use of a Bay window, Dan O'Connor was able to add a window seat and more storage space to the design.
Typical in older homes, this design features two glass panels that slide up and down within in the frame to provide ventilation from either the top or the bottom. Often referred to as "sash windows."
Most modern houses are built in this style. The doors on this design open outward from a side hinge. You can choose single-pane or double-pane versions of casement windows.
FAQs About The List Of Common Window Materials for Your Home
When choosing window and door systems for homes, appearance, performance, and function are high on the list of requirements. In addition, factors to consider will include the visual appeal, energy efficiency, operation, ventilation and light transmission. Your choice may also come down to current trends, a material used in framing, type of glass, position and size. There are plenty of things to think about. Here we will go into depth about your choices for a new house or renovation.
Work out what is important for you.
- Appearance – Is the style or look the most important factor?
- Thermal properties – Are you worried about heating and cooling costs?
- Climate – Will your climate influence your decision?
- Maintenance – Do you want a low maintenance solution?
Many factors will determine your selection. We will cover some of the many options in today's market and make things a little clearer.
Firstly, timber windows have better thermal properties, so you're likely to choose timber if that's your main concern. Some people prefer the look of timber because it's a natural product, which can be integrated into your home to blend into the surrounding natural environment. Most timber frames will be painted or stained. Either way, you'll need to keep the maintenance up to ensure longevity. Wood rot and attack from insects such as termites are also something to consider with timber.
- Better thermal properties
- Natural visual appeal
- Classic design
- Higher maintenance (Painted or stained)
- Subject to wood rot and attack from termites
Aluminium is a relatively low maintenance product compared to timber. Available in either powder coated or anodised finish, they are less susceptible to wear over time. Although the finish on aluminium can fade, the product is more of a set and forget solution. It is rust-resistant and is more fire-resistant, which is a feature that is becoming requested more frequently in recent times.
If a commercial or minimalist look is desired, aluminium will suit this style.
- Low maintenance
- Durable product
- Not subject to attack from termites
- Ideal for the more commercial look
- Difficult to change colour after installation
- Powder coating can fade over time
- Can corrode in tough environments (e.g. Coastal)
Steel frames have similar characteristics as aluminium. The main advantage of steel over aluminium is the relative strength, which allows for thinner frames. That's about the extent of it, though. Corrosion has always been the enemy of steel frames. Rust is difficult to repair in windows and doors and, when left unattended, can result in glass breakage. If you like the look of steel frames, go for it, but aluminium wins in most other areas. Expect to pay more for steel.
- Available in slimline design due to extra strength of steel
Paint means maintenance in saying that there is a warmth that a painted surface makes a homeless clinical. Repainting windows and doors can be a headache and can be costly. As with every decision, there are tradeoffs. Maintenance is a big one for timber frames.
Stained timber windows and doors are like painted. The main difference is that poorly maintained stained frames look terrible. In many cases, timber absorbs stains to leave timber looking dry and unkempt. If you want the timber look, you'll have to pay with time or money, saying that any other product cannot match the natural timber look.
Powder Coated Aluminium
This finish is most popular with aluminium frames. It's resistant to scratches and requires little maintenance once you decide on a colour that is it. Painting existing powder-coated frames never look the same. Powder-coated frames are very popular in all types of properties.
Commonly found on aluminium frames, anodised frames are found in many commercial applications. However, clear anodised, which looks silver in colour, is probably the most popular with commercial-style homes.
Open plan living has been around for a while now, and it's not going away any time soon. Blending the kitchen into the lounge, dining area, and backyard is the way to go if your property is suitable in saying that traditional framing systems still have a place in more conservative designs.
Current Trends In Windows And Doors.
- Colour trends
- ECO-friendly products
- Larger glass areas
- Opening systems (Bifold v Sliding)
- Try to stick with neutral colours as changing the track can be difficult. Painting timber windows can be expensive while changing the colour of aluminium windows never really looks the same. If the colours of the home change in the future, you don't want to change aluminium windows and doors if possible. Black is a popular option, which works well with any colour, and it is easier to keep looking clean. White or off whites are timeless but will show dust and dirt. Steer away from unusual colours that will date quickly.
- Glass Size
- Large panels of glass almost always provide a feeling of elegance and space. Small glass panels require more framing, which takes away from the home's feeling of space and openness. There are limits, so choosing glass sizes that stay within the normal requirements of domestic glazing is a good idea. 6.38mm Laminated Glass is available in many forms. Clear, tinted, frosted, and various energy-efficient variations are all available. In most applications, three square metres is the maximum panel size for this type of glass. That could be 3000mm x 1000mm, 2000mm x 1500mm or any other height or width if it stays under the maximum area.
More On The Glass Types
Let's think about what you need rather than what you will be encouraged to buy.
Heating And Cooling
In most locations throughout Australia, air conditioning is a preferable inclusion for most homes. However, regardless of the type of glass you choose, heating and cooling will be required in the peak of winter and summer. The main difference with energy-efficient glass is the length of time you will run your air conditioning. It does a great job of preventing heat from entering or leaving home, but it's not essential.
Avoiding High-Performance Glass
Truth be known, products such as double-glazed units and energy-efficient glass can be avoided. Shading can play a huge role in reducing your glass requirements when designing your home. Clear glass has little resistance to direct exposure to the sun; therefore, shade is very important. Positioning windows and doors in the right location will avoid extreme heat, the biggest problem for Australian homes. Alpine regions are the main exception when battling extreme conditions.
Besides the look and thermal performance of glass, safety and security are important. Laminated glass offers both and is available in most energy-efficient variations. The laminated interlayer also eliminates 99% of ultraviolet radiation.
Fiberglass windows are a great all-around solution for those looking to balance visual appeal, quality, durability and energy efficiency. As an added bonus, fiberglass replacement windows are less likely to take damage during installation than other composite windows.
This window, which is opened and closed by turning a handle, may be tilted to provide for varying degrees of ventilation and lighting. Although they cannot be sealed completely, these windows are frequently utilised in smaller rooms where draughts and security concerns are less of an issue. A representative from Landmark Homes spotted them at this residence.
Sliding windows, which come in single, double, and multiple-panel configurations, are frequently the most secure choice for outdoor spaces like decks and pathways. Aluminum Systems has a wide selection of window designs suitable for any home, including this one with aluminium frames.
As can be seen in the outdoors room design by Darrell Church on the previous page, this style is the pinnacle of air conditioned living as it blurs the lines between the two. Instead, the windows might be pulled back, as in this design by Baywood Homes.
Aluminum, timber, PVC, steel, and composites are the most popular frame materials, so you can find anything to suit your home's aesthetic needs among the available window materials.
There are numerous iterations of this window type to accommodate a wide variety of roof pitches, altitudes, and lighting requirements. Some may open, either manually or wirelessly, while others serve merely as a source of supplementary illumination. Because VELUX saw this coming. Velux skylight windows may be found in the deck-accessible kitchen, dining, and living room.
The fixed window, sometimes known as a picture window, is the simplest but also most flexible window treatment option.
This is most evident in the usage of round-topped windows, which can function as a standalone feature or as a decorative cap for other windows, as in this Cavalier Homes creation. Since that this look will be produced to order, cost may play a role in the final decision. Cavalier houses also feature geometric accompanied by high in the dining area, providing a glimpse of the vineyards and mountains outside. Finally, most window types can be combined to make a glass wall that opens to the outdoors or serves as a divider between interior rooms, depending on your needs and budget.
This window is strategically positioned high upon that wall to maximise privacy without sacrificing natural light or ventilation. Creative Arch's innovative home features a top-hinged door that opens to the horizontal.
Choosing A Window And Door Company
- You should consider the supplier's lumber quality, aluminium grade, and fittings standard while making your purchase.
- Relying on established producers is a safe bet. Businesses frequently purchase materials from Australian suppliers like Capral Aluminium.
- Each component, from locks and wheels to glazing materials and screws, helps ensure the final product will work as intended.
- Choose just those businesses that have a physical location or showroom that you can examine and try out the product in person.
- You can almost certainly count on the larger corporations to be there in ten years; they may not be the cheap guy with one truck operating from his backyard now, but they will be. If you skimp on the windows and doors, you may end yourself paying for it when things stop working properly.
- Having lasted for so long in the industry must mean they can do something right.
- Keep in mind that everyone may create a visually appealing website; therefore, thorough investigation is required. Choose a firm with established leadership and a winning track record.
- Semi-commercial aluminium frames of the present day are quite tough to beat. Using gender fluid or stacker door systems, they are contemporary and well-suited to open floor plans. Yet picking out a window design can be trickier. There is a common complaint with double-hung windows: the spiral balances wear down over time. Due of their low maintenance requirements, we would probably go with either an awning or glazed windows.
- As a result, powder coating or anodising is the choice finish if we are aluminium. The most common type of anodized finish, clear anodised, gives the metal a silvery sheen and is hence quite popular. This is styled in a manner more appropriate for a business or factory. Powder coating is required if you want a non-standard colour other than black or white.
- Almost all window and door panes installed in American houses must meet or exceed the standards set out by Grade A Reinforced Glass. Most people agree that laminated safety glass, measuring in at 6.38 mm, is the best option. There are some windows that don't have to have glass windows, but we still encourage it. This material is more robust than standard float glass and provides a high level of protection. Explore how you can employ 6.38mm Grey Layered Glass as an energy-saving option. It's cheaper and it has decent thermal management properties. This product might save hundreds or perhaps thousands of dollars if used to glaze a complete house. If you also invest in some quality window coverings, you'll have a complete and sensible solution for your house.
It's important that they complement the style of your house.
If you live in a historic cottage, for example, you probably don't want walls of glass with sleek metal frames, but a more traditional timber frame and six-pane style might work nicely.
The Importance of Choosing the Appropriate Form for the Job at Hand
Louvre windows are a great option if you want to install windows in a room only so that you can enjoy the fresh air from the ocean. You could want to add frosted glass if you need to let light in but don't want to pry into your neighbor's bedroom. To illuminate interior spaces that have no access to natural light from the outside, like pantries, ensuites, and walk-in closets, consider installing skylights or roof windows.
Factors in the Natural World
Having too many windows can be problematic since it lets in too much heat during the summer, causes glare while watching TV, and prevents you from getting enough shut-eye.
In the winter, air can leak in, and in the summer, warm air can escape, both of which are undesirable. Your Energy Savings reports that in the summer, heat input via an unprotected window can be one hundred times that of the same amount of uninsulated wall. You may insulate your home from noise and temperature swings by installing double-paned windows, and you can keep the sun and rain out by installing an awning or window film.
Architectural interest can be created in an instant by installing a window in an unusual location or in an unusual shape
Make It The Main Event
You can frame a beautiful view or add much-needed architectural interest by installing a fixed panel of an unconventional shape or size in an otherwise practical window. A bay or loft window, for instance, might make a fantastic reading nook or extra storage without drastically altering the overall footprint of your house.
Verify That They Are Up To Par
Doors and windows must be structurally sound, watertight, and energy efficient in order to pass BCA's stringent requirements. In high-wind or bushfire-prone areas, for example, you may be restricted in the kind of frames and glazing that you can use. Using unapproved materials might delay a project and even necessitate a whole redesign. Check with the window manufacturer to make sure you're fulfilling all the criteria outlined in the written records.
It's crucial to find the happy medium between form and function when selecting windows for your home. Large panes of glass let in natural light but also allow people to peer in or out, and can cause temperature extremes within or outside the building. In response to rising environmental awareness, double-paned glass is gradually becoming the norm for homes everywhere. There are several variations of windows, such as projecting pane, Bay of Box, double-hung, casement, and louvred. Handle-operated windows are convenient for opening and closing, as well as for adjusting the amount of light and airflow entering a room. They are frequently installed in smaller spaces where draughts and security are less of a concern.
The best type of window for protecting outside areas like decks and walkways from intruders is a sliding window. Bi-fold windows, which can be folded back or rolled up to create an airtight seal, are the epitome of comfortable living. Window treatments for flat windows, like picture windows, geometric windows, and awnings, range from the simplest to the most complex. Aluminium, wood, PVC, steel, and composites are all viable options for frame materials. A glass wall can be created by combining different types of windows to create an opening to the outside or a separation between inside areas.
While deciding on a Window and Door Business, it's important to think about the supplier's lumber quality, aluminium grade, and fittings level. Open floor plans benefit most from semi-commercial aluminium frames, whereas double-hung windows deteriorate over time. When it comes to aluminium, powder coating or anodising is prefered, while for glass windows, laminated safety glass is the way to go. All tempered glass used in American homes must be at least Grade A Reinforced Glass standard.
- It is crucial to find a happy medium between form and function when picking out windows for your home.
- The shape, location, and material of your windows can be customised to your exact specifications.
- The limitations of glazing influence the size limitations of a window, therefore choosing the type of glass you want before choosing the frame construction material is important.
- Casement windows come with either a single pane or a double pane of glass.
- Sliding windows, which might have one, two, or even more panels, are often the most safe option for exposed areas like patios, decks, and walkways.
- The kitchen, dining area, and living room with access to the deck all feature Velux skylight windows.
- Last but not least, most window varieties can be joined to form a glass wall that either gives you access to the outdoors or separates areas inside the house, depending on your preferences and budget.
- Identifying a Reliable Window and Door Supplier While choosing a supplier, think about the quality of the lumber, the grade of the aluminium, and the level of the fixtures.
- Yet, choosing a window style can be more difficult.