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A window is referred to as a sash window if it has one or more movable panels, which are called sashes. The way you can tell whether a window is a sash window is if it has a frame holding together several panes of glass. Quite often narrow muntins separate the panes.

Sash windows come in many different varieties. Some have panels opening to the outside, while others have panels that slide horizontally or vertically. The sliding sash windows sometimes are referred to as sliding sash, case, sash or Yorkshire light windows.

The typical American style sash window has a frame with a sash on top and one below. You can operate the window by sliding it down or up. One of the benefits of this window is the ability to remove or tilt the sashes in order to clean them. There are many different configurations, models and shapes to choose from within this class of sash window.

The sash window has a long history, originating in England in the mid-17th century. Ham House is a famous early house that had sash windows. Robert Hooke is credited with creating the sash window, although there isn’t any conclusive evidence that proves this.

Victorian and Georgian style homes usually feature sash windows. There are two panes up and three panes across in classic sash windows, providing homeowners with six-over-six panel windows. The standard size of sash windows is four feet wide; however, wooden sash can fit almost any size and there is no fixed rule.

In order for sash windows to function, there is panel that is balanced through using a counter-weight made of heavy steel or another material hidden within the window frame.

Usually sash windows are made out of single glazed glass and soft wood, although sometimes double glazed glass is used.

A sash window is more likely to need some routine maintenance than a fixed window due to the fact that the panels slide each time the window is opened and closed. They require a lot of maintenance as well; however, the extra work involved is worth it since sash windows are very attractive.


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Besides being aesthetically pleasing, sash windows are more practical too. They work better in keeping the temperature inside cool during warmer months. This is due to the fact that sash windows open at both the bottom and top. The room’s warm air is allowed to escape through the top opening, while cool air coming from outdoors is allowed in through the bottom opening.

A new kind of sash window was released recently into the marketplace. They are called uPVC sash windows, and they are attractive like regular sash windows are but are much more energy efficient and don’t require as much as maintenance and painting on a regular basis.

When you decide to give sash windows a try, be careful not to go with the first window installer you find. Make sure to get work samples and quotes from thee different companies at least before you make your final decision on which company you want to have install your new windows.

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