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Window style is not only a reflection of your personal style but can improve the curb appeal of your home. Choosing the right window style can affect the overall feel of your home, inside and out. If you think most replacement windows are the same, think again. Do you want your windows to open and close easily? Prefer easy cleaning and maintenance? Want to know how to best block air and wind? Window styles have everything to do with answering these questions.

Before we delve deeper, let’s start with Window Style 101. Understanding differences between the basic styles is actually much simpler than you may realize.

Compare Double Hung vs. Single Hung

Window style double hung

Single Hung (on left) Double Hung (on right)

On double hung windows, both sashes in the window frame are operable or move up and down. On single hung windows, the top sash is fixed in place and does not move, but the bottom sash is operable. Sometimes, a single hung also offers a unique option to incorporate a geo shape option into the top sash.

Slider Windows


Slider Window
A slider window is typically composed of two operable sashes that open and close horizontally on a track. It’s a good window style choice when the width of your opening is longer than its height.

Casement Windows


Casement Window
Casement windows are attached to one side of the frame with a hinge and open by swinging the sash out from the window. Great Lakes casement windows open with a crank and feature a fold-away nesting handle as well as a multi-point locking system.

Picture Windows

Window style picture

Picture Window
Picture windows are sometimes referred to as fixed windows. They are a non-operable window that is designed to fill large spaces in a wall. They provide an expansive view and are an excellent choice if you want to let in more light and increase the curb appeal of your home.

Cleaning Time is a Happy Time–if you choose the right window style!


Double hung wins out for easiest to clean. Double hung windows allow both sashes to raise, lower and tilt-in for cleaning both sashes from inside of the home.Slider windows are easy to clean as well, both are operable – allowing you to easily reach through the opening to clean the exterior of the window.

Casement windows can crank to its fully open position, allowing you to then reach through the opening to clean the exterior of the window.


Air Infiltration: Which style shuts it out the best?

Window style
When it comes to resisting air infiltration, the picture window is extremely energy efficient since it is fixed within the open space. Ultimately, if you want an operable window that is the best for air infiltration, nothing beats a casement window. A casement window offers the tightest possible seal against outside air because it has a detailed locking mechanism securing it to the frame in three places.

When you’re considering the energy-efficient qualities double hung windows, casements and sliders, be sure to:

  • Look for the NFRC (National Fenestration Rating Council)  label on a window, which provides information on how a window performs.
  • Compare product performance – the two most referenced energy ratings on an NFRC label are U-factor and Solar Heat Gain
  • Look for the ENERGY STAR® label – the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have developed this designation, which varies by climate, for products meeting certain energy performance criteria. Great Lakes Windows can be configured to meet or exceed ENERGY STAR ratings in all 50 states.

Feeling a bit wiser about choosing new window styles for your home? No longer wondering, “What is a double hung window?” For more information that will help make you an even savvier consumer when shopping for replacement windows visit the Window Style section of our website or schedule a consultation with a Great Lakes Window dealer so you can see the differences for yourself!

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