Types of Windows for Your Home

The Types of Windows for Your Home: A Complete Guide

There’s a reason why spring and summer are the perfect seasons to replace your home windows. It’s about the caulk.

Window installation experts know the best time to apply caulk is when the outside temperature is between 41-and 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Not too hot, but not cold.

The time is right, but how do you know replacing windows is something you need now? Not to mention that you’re not sure what window styles work for your home.

Relax. There’s no need to let replacing windows stress you out.

Please take a minute and read our guide. We’ve covered the essential types of windows homeowners love. We’ve even included a few signs you need new windows.

Signs You Need to Think About Replacing Windows

You can often tell when you need to replace something in your home. An aging refrigerator doesn’t keep the milk fresh. A worn-out dryer takes too many cycles to dry your clothes.

It’s the same with home windows. Here are the signs to watch out for when windows get near the end of their service life:

  • Jamming and sticking
  • Water damage on frames
  • Rotting wood
  • Excessive condensation between panes
  • Scratched or damaged vinyl

You may also notice an unexplainable increase in your energy bills. Worn-out windows can develop gaps and cracks, which allows outside air in.

Now that you’ve determined it’s the right time for new windows, we’ll talk about the most popular window styles available for homes. Let’s start with the two most common types of windows.

Single and Double Hung

Single and double-hung windows are everywhere. They’re the most common windows installed in homes. Here’s an overview of what they look like:


Single-hung, windows have two panels.

The bottom panel—the sash—moves up and down. The upper panel remains stationary. It’s also covered up by the bottom panel when you open the window.


Double-hung windows have two sashes. Both sashes slide up and down in the window frame.

While you can open a double-hung window from either the top or bottom, you can also open it so that the panels meet in the middle.

It’s a feature people like because it lets fresh air in from the top and bottom.

Popular features of both single and double-hung windows include:

  • Easy to operate
  • Easy to clean
  • Reasonably priced

Single and double-hung windows are a classic choice for residential replacement windows.


Unlike the single and double-hung windows, casement windows operate by turning a crank. Instead of moving up and down, they swing out or up.

You’ll notice casement windows don’t have glass panes. Instead, manufacturers make them from one piece of glass.

You’ll enjoy this type of window if you love unobstructed views. You’ll find casement windows in just about any room, including:

  • Kitchen
  • Living Room
  • Bedroom
  • Bathroom

Casement windows also make a good choice if you’re replacing windows in a home office.

A Window for Challenging Climates

If you live in a climate where you face weather challenges, you need windows to shield your home, especially from rain.

Consider installing awning windows.

Awning windows swing outward, allowing airflow from left, right, and bottom. Because of their design, they prevent rain from coming in through the window.

Basements and bathrooms are ideal rooms for awning windows. They fill dark, stuffy rooms with natural light and fresh air.

Awning windows look stunning when installed above or below picture windows.

Continue reading to explore picture windows—popular with homeowners shopping for custom and specialty windows.

Picture Windows

Do you enjoy sitting in a room with a view? Picture windows, strategically placed, can offer breath-taking views.

You can recognize a picture immediately because they don’t open, don’t have breaks, and don’t sit in a visible frame.

Picture windows are part of a window configuration, flanked on either side by double-hung or casement windows. Another trendy configuration is a picture window with awning windows installed above.

What are the most popular locations to install picture windows?

In kitchens, picture windows work well in a breakfast nook. You can also install one over the sink.

Don’t forget the living room! That’s the most common place you’ll find these stunning windows.

Windows With a Touch of Architectural Charm

If you feel a bit bored with your current window configuration, transom windows offer a way for you to add a bit of architectural charm to your home.

Commonly found installed over doorways, transom windows allow light in and offer a tantalizing peek at the sky.

While transom windows traditionally fit over doorways, your window installer can place them just about anywhere your heart desires. Whether installed above a picture window or an interior door, transom windows make a statement.

They’re not dull windows. Whether you love square, rectangular, or semi-circle shapes, you’ll find a transom window complements your design style.

They also come in operating and non-operating styles.


If you live in a climate where you can open the windows year-round, you’ll likely love sliders! Sliders glide horizontally on a track.

Here’s why you’ll love them:

  • Easy to operate
  • Lift out easily for cleaning

Talk to your installer about ordering sliders with energy-efficient glass. You could see a reduction in your heating and cooling bills.

They’re pretty popular in mid-century-style homes, but slider windows can also make a statement in contemporary houses.

These windows work well in rooms where you frequently open and close the windows.

Stationary Windows

Earlier, when we talked about pictures windows, we may have led you to think that they’re stationary windows because they don’t move.

Picture windows feature seamless frames, while the frames on stationary windows are much thicker. The thickness allows stationary windows to blend in with windows installed below or on the side.

Think of stationary windows as accent windows.

They’re trendy because homeowners can customize them in just about any shape imaginable. Popular stationary window shapes include:

  • Circle
  • Half-Circle
  • Triangle
  • Oval
  • Arch
  • Eyebrow
  • Gothic

A stationary window is an excellent choice if you have a small space where you’d like to add more light and architectural interest.

The Beauty of Bay and Bow Windows

When you want to create a focal point in a room, you can easily accomplish it by installing either bay or bow windows.

Both types of windows create extra interior space. They stick out from the exterior of the home. Their design means you’ll have a shelf, which you can use to display plants or as a sitting area.

The easiest way to differentiate between bay and bow windows is to look at their structures.

Bay Windows

  • Bay windows have 3
  • Larger window in the center
  • Two smaller windows on each side.

Bow Windows

  • Five openings
  • Curved structure

The curved structure of a bow window gives the home’s exterior a rounded appearance.

Either of these window styles makes a beautiful design statement. If you have a modern home design, you’ll appreciate what a bay window can do to enhance the style. Bow windows complement traditional and Victorian-style homes.

Looking Beyond the Different Types of Windows

Once you decide which window styles you prefer, your next step is to think about the different window materials. You’ll have five types of window frames to choose from, including:

  • Aluminum
  • Composite
  • Vinyl
  • Fiberglass
  • Wood

Which one is best for your home? It depends on several factors.

While we can’t cover all the ins and outs of the different types of window frames, we can say that there are a few key things you’ll need to consider.

The first is your budget.

Generally, you’ll find that wood window frames are more expensive than your other options. Vinyl is more budget-friendly and offers the bonus of being relatively low maintenance.

The second thing you’ll want to think about is climate.

The weather where you live impacts the type of window material you choose. For example, if you live in a coastal area, you’d think twice about wood windows because they don’t take well to high humidity levels. On the other hand, Vinyl windows would make an excellent choice for a beach house.

Finally, look at the architectural style of your home. Wood windows easily complement the detail found in Victorian-style homes. Vinyl windows look out of place.

Now You Are Ready to Shop for New Home Windows

We hope reading our guide relieves some of the stress you’ve felt over choosing windows. Now that you’ve had an opportunity to explore the various types of windows in residential living spaces, it’s time to decide.

If you’ve enjoyed this article and would like to read more like it, check out the rest of the posts on our blog. We’ve put together a collection of things people like you enjoy reading.