Building your own home is a dream of many. Not all of us can achieve it, but those who can realise in the process that many big and small details are significant to the building. One of those details is the choice of windows.
At first glance, it should not be a daunting task. However, a second one gives us a clear view of how important it is to think of every tiny detail regarding a window.
Here you can find all these small details you need to consider and, hopefully, help you make your choice easier.
The area you choose to live in plays a huge role in home renovations. Depending on that, you might have to check if you need permission for window installation or what are the current building regulations.
For example, if you live in a conservation area, there are strict rules you must follow when you renovate your home. The same stands if you are living in a flat building. Other sites, however, require permission only if you are going to do glazing replacement work.
In any of these cases, it is recommended to consult with a registered installer.
Before considering the room requirements, you need to consider the direction the window is facing. Take into consideration how many elements and sunlight it will be exposed to.
For instance, north-facing windows received less light than south-facing ones. They are cooler and weaker than these. East-facing windows receive sunlight in the morning, while west-facing ones do in the afternoon. That makes those facing the East weaker and cooler and those facing the West stronger and hotter.
Now you know the direction your windows are facing, you can think of the room. The size and purpose of the room play a huge role. The things you need to consider are light, ventilation and security.
If you are changing the windows in your kitchen, you need windows that will help you with ventilation and have good visibility. While if you need one for your living room or bedroom, you need to think of such with good visibility that will bring as much sunlight as possible.
Window size is crucial for a couple of reasons. How much light it will get and heat it will keep, and how expensive it will be to be replaced.
Despite bigger windows being perfect for bringing as much possible light to your home, they could be better isolators. Of course, if you have a good heating system in your home, bigger-sized windows should be fine for you.
The other factor, as mentioned, is money. Most windows are standard-sized, and you can easily find them when shopping for one. If you are currently building your home, it’d be to go with standard-size windows. They are much cheaper and easy to install. However, if your windows differ from the standard, the production and installation come at a price.
There a various window styles we can choose from when it comes to this. It is not only the size. You can choose from different types of frame material, glass and how energy efficient you would like them to be. Of course, if you are replacing only one window, you should find the same or the closest one to the other in your home. For those changing the style of all their windows, keep the building and neighbourhood vibe in mind.
Window frame material
Window frames are the thing to consider before choosing the glass. They are like the spine of a window. The higher quality they are, the longer time your windows will live. The types and sizes of a window frame are as essential as the type and size of the whole window structure.
The most popular window frames are aluminium, wooden, composite, fibreglass and vinyl. Of course, these have differences in durability, style, price and energy efficiency. Some window frames have the ability to be repaired instead of replaced. However, it all depends on the level of damage. When choosing a window frame, you need to consider whether it will crack easily, bend or warp, or peel, how energy-efficient it is, whether you paint it, expand and contract, and whether it looks good.
When choosing the glass for your windows, it will help you to think about all the problems you want to fix in a room due to your previous ones. This includes energy efficiency, UV protection, noise and safety.
If you are changing the windows in your bedroom, you would probably consider noise-reducing windows. Those are constructed of 2 thicknesses of glass with a PVB layer between them that catches the noise. If you are replacing the windows in your living room and want to protect your furniture and carpets, you will need a glazing unit with an outer laminated pane.
Nowadays, depending on your environment, you can choose windows that will benefit you.
Such as the ones with low U-value will be better if you want to keep the heat and cold out. You can choose R-valued windows if you are looking for the opposite effect with good wall and ceiling insulation.
How practical are they?
Even with all the characteristics mentioned above, a window must be helpful. It needs to be comfortable to use. That includes installation, cleaning, mechanisms, comfort and many more.
What is their Purpose
You have to decide how important your windows will be. Are they going to be only decorative and accent from the outside? Will they be operable and have a crucial role in ventilation?
Choosing different windows for each room, depending on the requirements, will help you. The same window will have other purposes and benefits for every area in your home.
What functions can they have
That might sound needless to mention. However, it places great significance. Starting from how easily your window will open to which way it does and the handle turns. These essential characteristics will either make you happy with your window choice or not.
Remember that some windows need to be used to escape situations like fire or flood.
How important is Comfort
The style and size of the window you choose will affect how comfortably you use it. For example, if the window you installed in your kitchen to help you with ventilation is too high, it won’t be a pleasant experience each time you use it. The same goes for the way it will open and what handle it has.
It is crucial to consider the front of your home. If you have large windows near the front door or a small one on it, you need to know these are vulnerable areas. Breaking glass due to any kind of collision can be dangerous. That is why using safety glass in those areas is important.
The easier your windows are installed the first time, the easier they will be de-installed when needed. Standard-sized windows are easier to install, while the others are not.
Different types, styles and sizes require different installations. So, keep this in mind when changing the whole concept of your windows.
Maintenance is the key
No matter the window’s purpose and function, it needs to be cleaned in the end. Regular maintenance not only keeps them clean but also extends their life. To ensure that your windows are streak-free and you do not have to worry about extensive dust build-up and rain ruining them, you should probably consult a professional window cleaning company.
Do not forget that different frames and glasses have different needs, and the style and size will completely change how you clean them.
Shopping for windows is not easy and not cheap. However, keep in mind that when it comes to windows, what you pay for is what you get. Making a list of the priorities will help you organise your budget.
Remember that as standard as they are, they’ll be cheaper and easier for installation and maintenance.
Remember that a window installation is nothing like buying a TV. This is a lifetime investment. It will keep your home safe and warm.
Each company has different types of warranties with other terms and conditions. Keep an eye out for every detail, including what the term “lifetime warranty” means – is it yours or that of the window?
With all characteristics, benefits and advice choosing a window for your home are entirely up to your personal preference. Your comfort and vision are the key. Consider your priorities and budget, and choose the best window for your needs.