single hung vs. double hung windows

retroronMarch 31, 2007

I live in the Tampa Bay Florida area. Replacing windows can be very expensive due to local codes requiring impact windows. Going wih single hung windows vs. double hung can save approximately 30%. I am considering doing single hung for the home except for the two bedrooms. I am in a single family home on a corner lot facing west, and have numerous windows that provide good cross ventilation. I am just not sure how important it is to have the advantage of opening the top of the window. Opinions are welcome.

Thank You,


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The biggest advantage to Double Hung is you can tilt both sashes in for cleaning. I also find the double hung convenient to open the top and botton a little each for better ventilation, or the top only in my office when I have papers spred out on the desk and don't want them blown around.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2007 at 12:27PM
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Windows on Washington Ltd

Like Skydawggy said...if you don't really care about the 3 things he the 30%

    Bookmark   March 31, 2007 at 6:04PM
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Yeah, but I get nervous about tying a rope around my waist and the other end around a piece of furniture just to clean the windows on the 1st and 2nd floors. 8^)

    Bookmark   March 31, 2007 at 8:31PM
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Well then either learn how to tie a double not or use a industrial wire. Geee! I have single hung in the house we moved into in October, DOn't really like them. even on the first level you have to outside to wash them with a windowwasher or a ladder by hand. I personally like washing my windows by hand.

I don't know what I would do if I replaced them. Someone mentioned 30% more, wow. Plus I like casements too.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2007 at 12:41PM
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I had single hung AL frame windows in a home I sold about a year and a half ago. they were ok, even though the house was a single story ranch going out side to wash the windows was a pain... some wiwdows were harder to reach from the ground and I still needed a ladder, plus some had flower beds outside under them. that made it harder since I didn't want to tramp down the flowers. I am starting to replace the old wood double hung windows with double hung windows that tilt in to clean. I really like them I have to say it makes cleaning them very easy and worth the price to me because I hate to clean windows so much. I have never cleaned the old windows in the house I am in now and doubt if I ever will clean any of the old windows before they get replaced since its such a hassle.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2007 at 10:48AM
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WE lived with single-hung all wood for many years and they were definitely a pain to clean.

Casements can be a pain too depending on how they open. We bought a RV wash broom with very soft bristles for washing second floor windows. The broom has a handle that extends far enough for me to reach the second floor windows. You can find these at your local RV store or on-line RV store. The broom should reach most second floor windows easily. Do expect to get wet though as some water will flow back down the handle.

I won't buy those from big-box unless they are specifically designed for RV or windows because the brush may scratch everything.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2007 at 11:57AM
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I have all single hung. I wish I had doubles. Especially bedrooms, but the other rooms would be nice as well.

I would love to be able to open the top window in the bedrooms at night rather than the bottom.

I also have blinds that I can open from the top or bottom. I love leaving the bottom of the blind down (covering the bottom half of window for privacy. I can't do this and open the window at the same time. It would be wonderful opening the window and leaving the blind covering the lower part of the window.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 9:59AM
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I'm looking for an energy difference between single and double hung windows? Is there one? I'm in Texas and keeping the heat out is the number one priority. Do double hung windows aid in this at all or is it just a ventilation and ease of cleaning thing?

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 11:28PM
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To keep heat out, low-E, double-pane and Argon gas and good solid seal are the minimum requirements. Window type does not really matter.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 11:52PM
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The sills and rails are generally much smaller on single hung windows (2-2.5 in. @ sills). On double hung they look much thicker especially on smaller windows, windows less than 2 1/2 or 3 feet wide. There is an unfortunate trade off between practicality / function and aesthetics / appearance. If anyone has suggestions for double hungs which have narrow sills and rails, rails no more than 2.5 inches wide, please let us know...Thank you

    Bookmark   November 4, 2010 at 1:00AM
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I meant the word "stiles" (not "sills) and the phrase "stiles" no wider than 2.5 in. (rather than the word "rails")...sorrryyy...

    Bookmark   November 4, 2010 at 1:24AM
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I'm battling with my husband right now over this: I want double hung for the ease of cleaning and to be able to open from the top. I wonder (no experience w/double hung) when you open them to clean, can you LEAVE them in that position, sort of like a jalousie window? Also, I never thought about the sills/rails being wider. For a 36" or 42" width window, would that be noticeably wider? Many thanks.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 12:40PM
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No you cannot leave them tilted in and from what I recall the stiles and rails are pretty dam near identical. Single hUngs are generally cheaper products which is why they are popular and most often seen today in Builder grade tract type or less expensive spec homes.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 1:43PM
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+1. Theoretically a single hung should be a stronger, more airtight unit just with less convenience, however most manufacturers know that consumers place a premium on that convenience, so all of their R&D, best features, etc are put into the double hungs. There are a few very solid SH's floating around, but as MWM alluded to, most are made with low-cost in mind.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 2:04PM
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