Homeowners comparing single-hung vs. double-hung windows have many considerations to keep in mind. These window types each shine in different ways. To know which is right for your home, it’s helpful to learn about their basic designs as well as how they perform in areas like ease of cleaning, cost, ventilation, and safety.
The Basics of Single-Hung vs. Double-Hung Windows
Single-hung windows have a simple but effective design. They consist of upper and lower panels known as sashes. When someone opens the window, the bottom sash moves up, and the upper sash remains stationary.
At first glance, double-hung windows have a similar appearance, but a key difference lies in the functioning of the upper panel. Along with the lower sash sliding up, a double-hung window’s upper panel is able to slide down. That means that both panels can be open simultaneously to let air in and out.
Ease of cleaning is another difference that comes into play with single-hung vs. double-hung windows. For both, you’ll usually need to spray the window with a cleaning solution and then wipe it down. However, the panels of modern double-hung windows can tilt inward. That allows the cleaner to reach the interior and exterior of both panels without going outside. In contrast, not all single-hung windows can tilt. Among those that can, tilting is limited to the bottom panel. This means that it’s impossible to clean the entire exterior of a single-hung window from inside the home.
Cost also matters when assessing single- vs. double-hung windows. Single-hung windows are generally less expensive than double-hung windows thanks largely to their simpler design. Additionally, installation costs for double-hung windows are usually higher than those for comparable single-hung windows.
What About Ventilation?
In ventilation performance, double-hung windows have an advantage. You can partially open both sashes of a double-hung window, which allows warmer, stale air from the home to move out while cooler, fresher air comes in. Single-hung windows do offer some ventilation as well, but not as much as double-hung windows.
When it comes to the safety of single- vs. double-hung windows, each can be adequately safe with certain measures in place. With double-hung windows, it’s important to make sure that the top sash securely locks in place after each use. Otherwise, gravity may tug it down.
That’s not a concern with single-hung windows. However, the bottom panel may still pose a risk of falls, especially for children, just as it can with double-hung windows. Regardless of the window’s design, proper supervision and the installation of window guards can help keep children safe.
The placement options for single- vs. double-hung windows may help you decide which is best. If the window is going to be in a difficult-to-reach location, such as above a counter, then a single-hung design may be the way to go. In such a spot, a double-hung window’s upper sash may prove tough to operate.
Conversely, double-hung windows shine in roomy areas that require lots of ventilation like bathrooms and kitchens. They are also great for the second floors of homes thanks to their ease of exterior cleaning.
If you’re looking for quality products and expert guidance on your next window project, get in touch with Thompson Creek.