Window Replacement Parts Glossary

At Southern Windows and Doors, we feel the more informed a homeowner is, the better choices they will make when choosing a replacement window contractor here in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. Here are some common terms you may find in your search for new home windows.

Window Replacement Parts Glossary

Window Frames
Aluminum- The old standard, commonly found in Texas homes since the 1950’s. Aluminum frames are nice because they do not rust and are lightweight. On the downside, aluminum is a great conductor of heat and cold thus makes for a very bad insulator as window frame material. Possible condensation and transfer of Texas heat and cold from the outside to the inside of the home.

Wood Frame
Common on homes built before 1950, wood window frames do not transfer energy as easily as aluminum frames but do require constant painting or staining and are subject to decay from insects and the elements. Only used today on very expensive homes or to meet historical standards in certain neighborhoods.

Fibrex, Composites
Basically, glued substances life fiberglass promoted by Renewal by Anderson. Normally sold in a high-pressure environment with crazy prices and crazy, must buy today discounts. A true dog and pony show. Very expensive and not yet proven in the marketplace.

Vinyl Frames
Vinyl or PVC are used in many products and vinyl window frames are the most common and by far the best frames to purchase. They are thermally non- conductive to heat and cold, do not rust or decay easily from the elements and possess great strength for heavier glass configurations. They are also the most affordable frame available. It is estimated that over 90% of all window replacement projects choose vinyl window frames.

Low-E High Performance Glass
Low-E or known as Low Emissivity glass, Double or Triple pane glass reduces the UV rays and infrared light and lessens damage to carpet and furnishings. Our standard in today’s high performance energy efficiency.

Low-E is simply a very thin coating of silver sprayed at the factory on the inside of a piece of glass.

This silver coating if sprayed very thick would be just like a mirror. Although a mirror used as an exterior window would be very energy efficient, people want to be able to see out of a window. Thus, just the right thickness of silver is sprayed on the glass creating a glass that reflects the heat and cold but is still visibly clear to the eye. Southern Windows and Doors uses Low-E glazing in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex to protect against the harsh Texas heat and winter cold.

Argon Gas
We breathe Argon gas every day as it is a natural element in the environment. A safe, harmless gas, “heavier and thicker than air” gas that is injected at the factory between the double panes of glass. Making the window even more energy efficient. This “heavier than air” gas acts like a thick soup, slowing down heat and cold transfer from outside to inside and additionally promotes dramatic sound reduction. Great for noisy neighborhoods, loud streets, and homes close to airports and schools.

Works in conjunction with the Low-E glass described above to make a truly energy efficient window.

Edge Spacer
This is the spacer separating the two or three panes of glass. Very important to have the spacer be non- conductive to heat and cold and also be durable to not allow any leaks in seal of insulated window unit.

Double Hung Window
A window where both the upper and lower sash moves vertically up and down. You can open the bottom half of the window, the top half of the window or a little of each. Southern Livings double hung windows both tilt in from the inside of the home allowing for cleaning of the outside glass from inside the room. A great feature for those second-floor windows that are hard to reach. Includes insect screen.

Single hung Windows
A window where only the bottom sash opens up by sliding vertically. Tilts in for easy cleaning. Includes insect screen

Casement Windows
Opened with a crank inside h the home, they are hinged on one side and open outward towards the hinge side. Great for that full view window look as there are no frame members in the viewing frame and also allowing for maximum full view ventilation. With insect screens Common on higher end homes.

Sliding Windows
Operating from side to side horizontally. Can open left to right or right to left. Also includes insect screens.

Egress Window
Used in bedrooms to provide emergency escape from a home bedroom in case of fire or other peril. Egress windows have specific requirements mandated by building code as to size and height off the floor.

Tempered Glass
A safety glass 4 times stronger than regular glass. Manufactured by heating up the glass at the glass factory to high heats and then cooling glass quickly. This heating and cooling process makes the glass very strong and very safe. Required in all doors and many windows close to doors and low to the ground, tempered glass although very tough, if broken, it breaks into many small pellets instead of jagged dangerous shards of glass.

If you have been considering window replacements in your home, contact us at Southern Windows and Doors.  We are happy to answer any questions you may have!