f you are researching windows to install in your home and come across one called a bow window, don’t worry. It’s not a typo. Bay windows and bow windows are very similar, but not identical. If you are unsure which one best suits your space, learn more about what each has to offer.
</p><p><strong>Bay </strong></p><p>A bay window isBismarck a three-paneled window that juts from your home, and typically features a window seat or storage bench below it, on the inside of the house. It is an attempt to bring the outside indoors. By creating the illusion that while in your living room, you’re simultaneously in your yard, the bay window creates a unique space in your room and eye appeal.</p><p><strong>Bow </strong></p><p>Bow windows are typically larger than bay windows, but serve a very similar purpose. Usually, bow windows have five panels, which cause them to curve like a bow instead of appearing more rigid like a bay window. The size makes them a prominent feature in your room, so it’s important that you have the wall space to incorporate them, and that you are comfortable with the light and exposure they allow.</p><p><strong>Customizing </strong></p><p>Once you have decided between bay and bow windows, the fun begins! You can customize with finishes such as:</p><p></p><ul> <li>Wood color</li> <li>Glass type</li> <li>Hardware</li> <li>Grilles</li> <li>Screens</li></ul><p>These choices will dramatically change the look of the window, so before you commit, envision the window with all of your selections. Have a good sense for the finished product before you head home. Otherwise, you may have an unpleasant surprise when the window arrives for installation. Once the window is in, you also have the opportunity to create a new internal space.
Working With Bow Window Treatments
There comes a time in every window's life when it must be repaired or replaced. There are many different reasons to repair or replace windows, the trick is deciding which is the best option for you. If you are looking for more energy efficient, high performance windows, replacing will win out over repairing. Even if you need just a minor repair you should review your options and determine if replacing the window might be more beneficial than a repair in the long run. The following information weighs the options for repairing or replacing a window for two major window issues: replacing glass and replacing a window sash.
There are usually two reasons to need to replace glass. 1. The glass is broken. 2. The insulated glass seal has failed and the glass is fogging. In either case, a new piece of glass can usually be ordered and installed into the old window to fix the problem. If it is a wood window, replacing the glass will require more work, and will cost more. Vinyl or aluminum frame windows normally have a glass stop that is easily removed so the glass can be replaced. In some cases with broken glass, old windows may not be cost effective to repair and you might be better off replacing the window unit.
If the glass is fogging because the seal has failed, the entire insulated glass will need to be replaced to fix the problem. One thing to consider if the seal has failed in one window, it may not be long before other windows start to fail as well. If your windows have reached this point, you might consider replacing the windows with newer, more energy efficient windows. A new piece of glass installed in the windows can run you between $100-$300 for materials and labor. A new replacement window will cost between $300-$700 installed.
While there is a significant difference in these two prices, the window replacement will have a longer life and provide you a more energy efficient window. In addition, with the energy savings of new replacement windows, you will recoup the additional costs incurred to replace instead of repair.
Window Sash Replacement
When wood windows get older they become inefficient, drafty, and hard to operate, or the old wooden sashes begin to rot because of poor maintenance and need to be removed, even though the window frame is still in good shape. Sometimes a sash replacement can help cure this problem by inserting new sashes into the existing window frames of the house. Several manufacturers offer sash replacement kits that provide new sashes and tracks to be installed into the old window opening. The tracks are screwed into the old frames and the sashes are mounted inside the new tracks. The process provides new sashes that are in good shape and are more energy efficient than the old sashes in the opening.
While this process may save material costs (not having to pay for a brand new window), it can be a labor intensive process, which will add to the bottom line costs. In addition, this process must be done correctly or the new sash replacement kit will not function properly which could lead to future performance and weatherproofing problems.
Old wood windows can have full frame replacements without removing the old frame or interior/exterior trim using a pocket window replacement. A pocket window replacement is performed by removing the old window sashes and stops and sliding a new window inside the pocket left behind by the old window. The window is then trimmed around the edges and sealed tight to guarantee a leak free installation. The benefit to a pocket replacement, in lieu of a sash replacement kit, is that the window is manufactured and tested at the factory so you know it is airtight, watertight, and energy efficient. By sliding the new window inside the existing opening, you are letting the window manufacturer worry about it keeping out the elements.
The window sash replacement will run you about the same as what you will pay for a new window by the time you factor in installation costs etc. so it can be a wash between the two options. If you get a low price for a window sash replacement, you should make sure the installer understands the amount of work required and that installing the kits correctly is the most important thing about the project.
The Choice is Yours
Ultimately the decision to repair or replace a window is yours to make. Generally a replacement window is going to cost more than a simple repair to an existing window, but the long term benefits of a new window can surpass the benefit of just a "band aid" on an old one. There are also many more companies equipped to provide a replacement window installation than there are to perform a quality window repair. While you may save on the costs to fix a window, you might spend a lot of time trying to find the right person to perform the repair. The bottom line is this: when you are considering a window repair, you should also consider replacing the window for the long term benefits that it can provide.
The Difference Between Bay Windows And Bow WindowsVinyl has become a viable rival for traditional materials such as wood over the years. It has proven to be comparable to, if not more efficient in many cases, the use of windows and doors, and offers design flexibility, minimal maintenance, and efficiency in energy and cost savings.The word "window" takes it's origin from the Norse word "vindauga" which loosely translates to "eye for the wind". The window was meant to be both functional as well as aesthetically pleasing.After the end of World War II, there was a shortage of materials such as wood, aluminum and steel so the Germans, in their efforts to rebuild, began to use a vinyl framing, which was a new thermoplastic. By 1959, BF Goodrich Company, a vinyl resin manufacturer decided to try their hand at vinyl window production, and offered sleek designs similar to that found in wood or metal window frames. Americans found that these were much more readily acceptable designs, compared to that of the smaller and bulkier German designs.Designs improved and popularity grew; sales of vinyl grew in the mid 1990's for both new construction and remodeling by 125%. Most window manufacturers offer vinyl windows as an option along with their more traditional wooden and metal frames. Innovations in vinyl formulas have helped to improve flexibility in designs.With improvements having been made over the last few decades to the manufacturing process of vinyl windows, maintenance is practically non-existent and non-essential. If the product requires a bit of cleaning, common household cleaners will make short work of the task, leaving the window as good as new. The average life span of a vinyl window varies depending on the use of the item, but on average warranties are offered for 20 to 30 years. To ensure the quality of the window's construction and performance, most vinyl windows produced today are certified by a third-party company and independent laboratory testing is performed in accordance with stringent industry standards.Some of the newer innovations made to vinyl are the addition of sawdust and cellular foam. The wood mixed with the vinyl has made a new option of embossing the vinyl so that it looks like wood and can even be stained or painted like wood. The use of cellular foam has made huge differences in the shapes and appearances of the trims. These are great to use as they do not rot or decay at all. Vinyl windows and other products made by the same process are color fast because the color is not just on the surface but is extruded through the entire product. The product is not only rot and rust free, but is impervious to pests like ants and termites. When made properly, the product also contains UV inhibitors to protect from sun damage and cracking or splitting.Windows made of vinyl framing are suitable for most building needs but cannot be used in high rise buildings or in places where there are consistently high winds. Tests on the windows are conducted to determine the limits the vinyl windows can withstand safely. Over the years the cost of vinyl windows has become much more affordable due to the popularity and easy accessibility to the goods required to manufacture the vinyl or vinyl composites. As a result they have become a cost effective alternative to metal and wooden frames.
Should You Upgrade Your Old Windows to Energy Star Rated Windows?
When searching for the perfect look for your bow window treatments, you will find that you have many choices. You can choose to purchase separate window treatments that will be installed to match the arch, and the selection is practically unlimited. Or you can choose to custom order a track and drapery that is designed exactly for your window arch.
If your choice is the separate treatments, you will need to purchase four or more panels to cover the window space. They can be sheer, or heavy and luxurious. Since a lot of bow windows are on the ground floor and in the front of the home, you may also want to consider drapery that gives you privacy. You can use sheers during the day for a certain amount of privacy, and then have heavier curtains to draw in the evening.
So you have a couple of directions to go in when you are choosing the draperies for your bow window treatments. You can do horizontal wooden blinds or shutters, or you can go with long, flowing sheers to the floor. However you decide to embellish these windows, be sure that the fabrics and colors you choose add to their grandeur, and they will capture, and in fact become, the beauty of the room.