Four Pillars: Window Design, Part I

Four Pillars of a Great Replacement Window Experience: Window Design, Part 1

Replacement Window DesignIn earlier articles we’ve discussed your replacement window Frame, Glass and all the aspects that lead to the best replacement window Installation. In this, the final pillar of your replacement window satisfaction, we’ll discuss what is probably the first thing you considered when you decided to look for replacement windows: your replacement window Design.

Of course “design” can encompass many aspects of a product, but our purposes here, we’ll speak of design to mean how a window looks, operates and what features and options are important for you to be happy with your choice for many years to come.

What should you consider in a replacement window’s design?

Below are a number of key areas of replacement window design you should consider and the questions you should ask your window design professional and yourself.

Selection & Choice

  • How many different styles of window does the manufacturer offer?
  • Do they offer different architectural styles to match your home’s architecture and your own personal design taste? You don’t want to settle for a certain style just because that’s all the window comes with.
  • What styles do they offer? Are they Modern and Contemporary or Classic and Traditional? How will this style complement your home’s architectural style? Contemporary designs may look good on a contemporary home, but will likely not look right on your 100-year-old Colonial, likewise, a classic double hung windows with detailed shadow lines and Colonial grilles will likely look very out of place on modern architecture.

Before deciding on a window, make sure it’s going to look good on your home. Look at different window styles to get one that matches your home’s character, architectural style and your own personal style.

Thickness of the Window Frame

  • How thick or thin are the frames of the window?
  • Do they obstruct the natural light coming in to your home and your views outside?
  • Are they really big and bulky or narrow and fragile-looking?

Be sure you carefully examine the size and thickness of the window frames. The goal of a window is to provide you with natural light in your home and views of the outdoors from inside your home. If your replacement windows block this natural light and your views, how happy are you going to be you’re your new windows?

Do you want to get an idea of how the replacement windows you are considering will look on your home? Try Renewal by Andersen’s Window Visualizer Tool.

Window Color Selection

Color is important to all of us. We consider it when we buy new clothes or paint the house, pick out curtains and drapes and everything else in our homes. We should certainly give this some thought when selecting windows for our home; it’s not like you can change it with the seasons like your clothes. Consider this:

  • In how many different colors are the windows you’re considering available?
  • If you choose these windows, will you be stuck with only white?
  • While white is certainly a tried-and-true traditional window frame color, will it look right on your home? In some cases, white calls attention to the window and says, “I’m a replacement window”.

ColorChipsCompositeYour windows should look like a natural extension of the home’s design; not some poorly thought-out afterthought. The way to ensure your windows look organic is to ensure your replacement window’s color compliments your home and its architectural style.

Wood Window Interiors

Our earlier article on Window Frame materials noted that wood is a traditional and classic window frame material. Although largely out of favor for replacement windows because of its susceptibility to rot and its need for regular maintenance, the warm appearance and classic look of wood makes it very appealing as an interior finish in most homes.

  • Would you love the look of real wood windows but you want the low maintenance of modern materials? Some window manufacturers sell replacement windows with the appearance of wood interiors that can give you this look. But beware: not all interior wood grains are manufactured to the same quality standards.
  • What kind of wood will your windows have?
  • Are they real wood interiors or simply “pictures” of wood grain faux finishes? Some manufacturers simply paint wood grain onto the framing materials, while others use a kind of adhesive foil or plastic to mimic the look of real wood.
  • How “real” do any of these “solutions” appear? Are they only good from far, but far from good?
  • What are your wood species, color and grain choices? Simulated wood interiors are usually offered in a very limited number (usually two) of common colors or patterns that can be economically mass produced. Be sure whatever you choose is going to match the moldings and other accents in your home. This is one area where you don’t want to settle for “close enough”.

The only way to get the real warm appearance of real wood is to have real natural wood that can be stained or painted to match the trim in the rest of your house. If we’re honest with ourselves, we know that no faux finish looks completely natural. If it’s fake you’ll know it and visitors to your home will know it too.

Up Next: Replacement Window Hardware & Operation

In our next post in this series, we’ll discuss additional Design considerations including Window Hardware and Operation.

Contact Us for more information

For more information on Renewal by Andersen of New Jersey’s design features and options, contact us at 1-888-826-2451 or fill out the short form on this page. We’ll be happy to answer any of your questions or set up an appointment to meet with you in person to show you.

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