Windows are made in a wide range of designs and standard sizes. The frames may be:
2. metal to fit into timber surrounds;
3. metal for direct fixing into surrounding masonry;
4. high-density plastic, which is virtually maintenance-free.
Standard-joinery modules are produced in metric dimensions.
Sash or double-hung windows. The term sash is derived from the French “chassis”, meaning frame, and normally means a sliding window. Usually, sash windows are made of timber but aluminium is becoming popular as it requires no painting, little maintenance and uses patent spring balances in place of traditional sash cords and weights.
Casements. A casement is a glazed, hinged metal or wooden frame, forming part of a window. Casement windows may be fixed, side-hung, top-hung or pivot. They may be single or double-glazed. This type of window may be used in any part of the home, for extensions or in dormer windows.
Bow. A bow window, combining a small opening and fixed glass panes, may be used to give more light, space and character to an old or new house. But before introducing a bow window, ensure that it is in sympathy with the style of the house.
Louvred. These are casement windows, swinging on pivots in the sides. They are normally metal framed and horizontal, centre-hung. Louvres afford privacy and allow controlled ventilation. Glazed with patterned glass, they are therefore useful in bathrooms and Wcs. A combination of a large picture-window lower section and a louvred top or side section gives maximum light and adequate ventilation.
Leaded lights. These were an early form of glazing used when glass was only obtainable in small pieces. Lead strips make up the light, which has individually glazed panes. The entire light is fitted into the window surround. Leaded lights are less popular now but can be used where a picturesque effect is required.
Horizontal sliding sashes. In these, the window leaves move sideways, either in front of each other or into cavities in the walls. Large, aluminium sliding windows are an attractive way of making a glass wall to an existing lounge or sun-room extension.
Skylights. These frames provide light and ventilation to the roof area. They may provide light in an area where a dormer window is not a practical proposition. There are several types of skylight windows. French. This is a form of folding casement. Two side-hung casements, which may open inwards or outwards, combine in one frame without a fixed meeting rail. The casements come down to floor level and are used as doors. The term “French window” may refer to a single or double casement.
Dormer. A dormer window gives light and ventilation to a roof area. It is used where, to avoid having a sloping window, a projection is built out and a window fixed into it.
Picture. This is usually a large, fixed, single- or double-glazed sheet of glass, used in conjunction with one or two opening casements or louvred fanlights.
Fanlights. These were originally fan-shaped semi-circular windows above doors. In modern usage, a fanlight refers to a small high-level opening window.