If you happen to be building your new home or giving your existing home a face-lift, perhaps you are wondering which direction to go in the way of windows. You may be considering what kind of window systems and styles would best suit your building, or maybe you’re looking for information regarding the sizes and configurations of the various window types.
In this article you will learn about all the key details, so that you can make an informed choice. After all, this is a decision you will likely be living with for years to come, so it’s important to choose well.
Before we talk about each of the different types of windows, let’s first take a look at some of the key features and benefits of aluminium windows.
Why aluminium windows are a smart choice
Because of the various benefits they offer, aluminium windows have become one of the most popular window choices in South Africa. They are cost effective, strong and durable while bringing together functionality and versatility with a sleek modern touch.
Aluminium windows offer a highly-durable and cost-effective solution for residential as well as commercial buildings. They are virtually maintenance free and can last a lifetime, they don’t rust, and even have a high threshold against corrosion.
Aluminium windows are available in standard sizes, but can also be manufactured in custom sizes and styles to suit your specific requirements.
They are available in various coatings to match your style. The most popular options are either the natural anodised finish (silver), or our standard powder coated colours – namely white, bronze, charcoal (dark grey), black and new silver. Beyond these, for large quantities, you can have your door frames powder-coated in almost any colour imaginable to suit your style!
It’s also good to know that your aluminium window frames can be fitted with various types of performance glass. This includes security and safety glass, aesthetic glass, acoustic glass, fire rated glass and bullet resistant glass. They can also be double-glazed, offering more energy efficiency, better acoustics and many other benefits that bring comfort and security to your home.
When it comes to the different styles, you can choose from a range of fixed pane (non opening) windows to casement windows, sliding and sliding-folding windows. Now let’s take a closer look at each type and their unique features…
Casement windows are also called projected windows or sash windows. The sashes refer to the opening sections which swing out from the window’s outer frame.
Casement windows can take two forms: side hung and top hung. The sashes of top hung windows are attached to the top of the outer frame and open upwards. Whereas with the side-hung windows, the sashes open to the left or right.
The beauty of casement windows is that their design provides optimal control over wind, rain and ventilation to the exact degree. They are especially useful when installed on the weather-facing side of a building, because they keep the rain out and allow you to control the amount of wind coming in.
You can have them open just a bit to let the air circulate, or open them all the way to ninety degrees. When it rains you can open them at the desired angle to let in the breeze but not the rain. These types of windows are perfect if you want to use cross ventilation to cool your home.
Casement windows can be as large as 2.4 m in width, and up to 1.8 m in height. Their maximum sash sizes can be 600 mm wide and 1200 mm high. Beyond this, you can couple these windows with sidelights or top-lights (explained further below). They serve well in rooms such as your home office, living room, bedroom and kitchen.
Sliding windows have an unobtrusive design, especially in cases where space does not allow for sashes to project outwards. Horizontal sliding windows come in 2, 3 or 4 panes, depending on the width of the window.
They are available in a range of standard sizes, up to 3 m in width, and up to 1.5 m in height, but larger custom sizes are also possible. There are also a few different sliding window systems we offer, some with slim profiles and others with more bulky profiles, so you can choose a system that best suits your building.
Sliding windows can fit seamlessly next to other fixtures such as fixed-pane windows, sliding doors or folding doors. These windows can also be coupled with sidelights or top-lights.
The lesser known “stacking” windows are also sometimes referred to as folding windows, folding-sliding windows, or concertina windows. These modern innovative windows open up extremely wide spaces, let in more air and afford you unobstructed views of your surroundings.
Stacking windows are manufactured exactly like stacking doors, but are made to the dimensions of a window. They are made up of multiple panels that fold upon one another when opened. Anywhere between 3 and 10 panels can be used, depending on the entire width of the opening. The panels all stack away in a neat and compact fashion and slide open with an effortless gliding motion.
These windows are perfect to install facing a garden or natural outdoor space. However they can also serve more practically as an opening partition between rooms such as your living-room and kitchen. In a commercial setting they can be used to open or close the serving hatch in a cafeteria. There are several possible applications for stacking windows, and you may have your own unique ideas!
Fixed pane windows
Remember that there are areas of your home that may not need an actual opening window. These areas may just be perfect for letting in light or exposing a stunning view. You can have fixed pane windows installed anywhere on the outer envelopes of your house where there is a view or natural surroundings. This immediately adds a modern aesthetic to your home.
You can also have large fixed-pane windows installed for indoor dividers between rooms. This way, you can significantly brighten up the interior spaces of your home.
Fixed glass pane windows can be coupled with different windows or glass doors, a solution which may be perfect for your porch, or swimming pool area.
Top-lights and sidelights
A perfect way to compliment windows and doors, that you may not know about, is to use top-lights and sidelights. Top-lights refer to the glass inserts above a window or door. Sidelights refer to the glass sections installed directly next to your door, either on one side or both.
You can use top-lights and sidelights to bridge and fill the remainder of the opening/doorway that is considerably wider and higher than the maximum sizes of your door, letting in more light and opening up more of the view.
Sidelights can incorporate sections that are fixed panes, and others that are opening windows, usually in the form of sash windows that are top-hung or side-hung. Top-lights usually incorporate fixed panes or top hung windows.
Coupled optimally with your windows and doors, these features let in extra light, they brighten up your space, and can beautifully compliment your home’s aesthetic layout.
When it comes to aluminium finishes you have both standard and more eccentric choices! The most popular options are either the natural anodised finish (silver), or our standard powder coated colours – namely white, bronze, charcoal (deep grey), black and new silver. Beyond these, for large quantities, you can have your door frames powder-coated in almost any colour imaginable to suit your style. Now that’s versatility!
Make the right choice
When choosing windows and doors for your building project, you obviously want to choose the best, most suitable styles, with the features that are best for your different spaces. These guidelines above will help you make the right choice.
Personalise your space! Whatever type of windows you desire for your home, aluminium windows can cover just about any customised specification.