Has the window along your patio begun to show signs of wear such as difficult opening, a deteriorating sash, or condensation between the glass panels? Replacing this window will greatly improve the look not only of your home interior but also of your patio. While many window styles are available to choose from, only one seems perfectly suited for alongside a patio: the sliding window.
What Is a Sliding Window?
A sliding window is a window that opens by sliding horizontally within its frame. Some sliding windows are designed so that one side is fixed and the other slides open. Some are designed so that either side can be slid open. Window manufacturers can mount their sliding window sashes on ball bearings so that the windows glide open, rather than sliding directly within the frame. As a final major feature, sliding windows are typically wider than they are tall.
Why Do Sliding Windows Work Well Along Patios?
These windows are perfect for use along a patio for several reasons.
Sliding Windows Don't Swing Open
Some window styles, like casement and awning windows, are mounted on hinges. When you open these windows, the glass sash hinges outward. The sash then creates an obstruction on the patio. People may bump into the window, and you can't arrange patio furniture in front of the window. Sliding windows, however, stay flat against the home when open, so you can more easily furnish and maneuver around them.
Sliding Windows Allow You to Hand Items Through Them
Have you ever been barbecuing on the patio and needed something in the kitchen? Sliding windows open wide, so a person inside the home can easily hand something out through the window to someone else standing on the patio. This makes everything from cooking outside to hosting patio parties simpler.
Sliding Windows Allow for More Sunlight and Ventilation
Because sliding windows open wide, they allow plenty of ventilation. You can enjoy the scent of the flowers on your patio wafting into your home. The width of the window also allows more sunlight to stream into your home. Do not worry if your current window opening is not very wide. Window installation technicians can easily widen an existing window opening to accommodate a wider sliding window.
Are There Any Downsides to Sliding Windows?
Every window style has pros and cons, but luckily, the downsides to sliding windows are minor when used against a patio. The bottom slot in which the window sashes slide does tend to accumulate dirt, so you'll need to wipe it out regularly to keep it looking nice. Also, buy high-quality sliding windows because the lower-end models aren't always well sealed and may leak air on windy days.
What Sliding Window Options Should You Choose?
If you are overwhelmed by all of the options for modern sliding windows, here are a few recommendations.
Sliding windows that tilt inward for cleaning are a lot easier to keep clean because you can clean both sides of the glass from the inside. A design that allows you to fully remove the sashes for cleaning makes it easier to clean the bottom sliding slot too.
Sliding windows are a little less energy-efficient than casement windows because they don't latch as tightly into the frame. You can make up for this by choosing low-e glass, one of the most energy-efficient types of glass on the market. Low-e glass reflects heat waves, which keeps both your heating and cooling bills in check.
A limit latch basically keeps the window from sliding open past a certain point. Such latches are helpful if you have kids or pets who may be tempted to go through the window.
When the time comes to replace the window or windows along your patio, sliding windows are the best choice. Contact Mid-South Exteriors to learn about our replacement window options and to schedule a free, in-home consultation.