Solving the problem of choosing the best style of windows for your home is not an open and shut case. There are several styles and mechanisms available, and once you've chosen and the windows are installed, you can't really change your mind, so it's important to do your research. Two of the most popular window styles for residential homes are sliding windows and casement windows. As the name would suggest, sliding windows allow for easy back and forth movement of one or two sashes within the frame. Casement windows are hinged and can be opened using a crank mechanism. Here are the pros and cons of choosing sliding vs. casement windows.
One benefit of choosing sliding windows over casement windows is that the opening mechanism is much simpler with fewer moving parts. You just unlock or unlatch and slide the window into the desired position. With a casement window, you can only open it by slowly turning a hand crank, though some are mechanized. This is typically a slower process and the crank may require maintenance or lubrication down the road.
Another major advantage of choosing sliding over casement is the savings. Because sliding windows have fewer mechanisms and moving parts, there are typically fewer costs associated with installation. With installation included, you can expect to pay between $350 and $2,300 per casement window. Sliding windows, however, can start as low as $60 per window with custom options running up to $2,300.
Because you can move the sash fully open, you can achieve unobstructed ventilation with a sliding window. With casement windows, you can typically only open the window partially and that means only partial ventilation. You can also install screens on sliding windows and most casement windows don't allow for them.
Because sliding windows need to move and provide flexibility, they are not always pressure closed at the contact point between sash and frame. That means that there will be small gaps that can let air flow through the seals. Casement windows, on the other hand, have a tighter seal and less movement and therefore more energy efficiency than sliding windows.
Sliding windows often accumulate buildup in the exposed exterior tracks, especially during winter months, and those tracks need to be cleaned regularly in order to maintain easy movement. Additionally, many sliding windows don't have tilt-in sashes so the screen must be removed and washed, and then the window must be cleaned from the outside with no interior access to the outside pane. It makes cleaning sliding windows a little more tedious.
Contact a local window supplier to learn more about sliding windows.