Examining The Advantages & Disadvantages Of Casement Windows

Casement WindowThroughout this series of replacement window guides, we’ve been looking at the main disadvantages and advantages for the popular types of windows, including basement, bay and awning windows.

The remainder of this replacement window guide article will examine the advantages and disadvantages you’re likely to encounter with one of the most popular window types, casement windows.

Casement windows can be installed as a stand a lone window unit but can also be installed as part of a bay window or bow window configuration. Awning windows and basement windows essentially follow the same principles of casement windows, but are just laid out slightly differently, usually in a vertical position.

Casement windows, most commonly made from vinyl, are usually hung vertically with an opening window hinged from the left or the right side of the frame. The opener can open inwards or outwards, but is more commonly installed with the opening element moving in an outward motion. Windows which open inwards are usually seen in apartments or in buildings where permits and/or safety are an issue/concern.

Due to their simple construction and sturdy frame, casement windows are known to last the longest out of all major types of replacement windows, without needing repair or replacement. The main part of the casement window most likely to fail before anything else is the crank, the crank controls the locking, opening and closing of the window unit.

The Advantages Of Casement Replacement Windows

Being as casement windows are one of the most popular types, listing the advantages for this type of window isn’t too hard at all. Casement windows:

  • Are Reasonably Priced
  • Are Energy Efficient
  • Are Available In A Variety Of Designs
  • Provide Good Ventilation

Reasonably Priced

Casement windows are one of the best priced replacement window types you’ll lay your hands on, with casement prices starting at just $150 with installation, you can buy them on the tightest of budgets. Casement windows are usually a similar price to double and single hung windows, obviously this price varies and will be dependant on many factors.

Energy Efficient

Casement windows are one of the most energy efficient windows, next to fully fixed frame windows. The sash of the casement window, when closed, forms a seal around the entire window frame, reducing the amount of air leakage (AL) which can pass between the inside and the outside space.

Available In A Variety Of Designs

The casement window type is available from most window manufactures including the biggest, such as Andersen, Pella and CertainTeed (MID). The casement windows offered by these companies, and others, come with a variety of finishes and a variety of colors, with a range of accessories such as chrome, vinyl or brass crank handles. You can also add a range of optional extras such as a surface grills and lead grills, this makes the casement windows more attractive to the eye and less “plain” looking.

Provide Good Ventilation

Casement windows usually allow two ventilation methods, one which allows you to open the window full and the other which allows you to open the window by a matter of centimetres whilst still retaining home security, preventing anyone from entering through the window. Either option is good for letting air into your home, particularly in the hotter summer months.

The Disadvantages Of Casement Replacement Windows

There are three main disadvantages to casement windows, mostly to do with their size and installation location.

  • Can’t Be Installed With Air Conditions
  • Can’t Be Installed In Conjunction With Storm Screens
  • Can’t Be Installed Above A Certain Size

Can’t Be Installed With Air Conditions

Most casement windows are designed to open outwards, this means that air conditioners cannot be installed within the top of the window, one of the big disadvantages with them.

If this is a big deal for you then you may want to consider alternative air conditioner installation methods (such as brick mounted) or look for a different type of window, such as the single hung sash which can accept most air conditioning units.

Can’t Be Installed In Conjunction With Storm Screens

Again, because casement windows open outwards, you can’t have storm screens installed on the outside of them since the screen would prevent the window from opening. As with the air conditioners mentioned above, if you need storm screens due to the area you live, double or single hung sash windows are probably a more viable option for you.

Can’t Be Installed Above A Certain Size

Casement windows hinge on one side and crank outwards to the left or to the right, for this reason they must be small enough to be able to support their own weight when left in the open position. Having a window which is too large would lead to structural failure in the window, for that reason casement windows can only be manufactured up to a certain size. This size is dependant on the manufacture, the window and the building it’s going into. Speak to a local window contractor for more advice.

The next guide in this series will examine the advantages and disadvantages of double hung sash windows. Stay tuned for that!

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