Sliding Sash Windows – What Are They?

upvc sliding sash window

Windows come in a variety of styles, but two stand out as particularly popular.  One comes with hinges attached to the sides or top, allowing the user to open the window outward.  Another consists of one or more moveable panels, which can be slid over the top of one another to create a gap.  This latter sort is known as a sliding sash window, and it’s what we’re going to talk about in this article.

sliding sahHow did sash windows first come to be?

It’s difficult to determine how the sliding Sash window was invented, and by whom.  Some theories credit English designers; others credit Dutch ones.  The windows were first introduced into England in the late 17th century.  Their popularity would steadily build over the following two-hundred years, and by the Georgian period, they were the window of choice for most homeowners.  By the time Victoria assumed the throne, they were the only sensible choice.

The hinged design of a casement window, which had previously dominated, was no match for the elegant economy of a sliding sash window, and so the latter would displace the former for several hundred years, until the development of modern materials and manufacturing methods would secure the comeback of the hinged design in the 20th century.  For this reason, period properties from the Georgian and Victorian era are often equipped with sash windows.

How do sliding sash windows work?

  1. Evolving from the simpler horizontal sliding sash window, vertical sash windows are constructed with two moveable window panels that slide up and down simultaneously; one in front and one behind. Able to open vertically from the top, bottom or both ways, it all depends on the style you’ve chosen.
  2. The seamless vertical action of this timeless window design was originally counterbalanced by lead weights, attached to waxed cotton cords on either side of the window. These days, high-quality uPVC sash window equivalents utilise a spring balance system which has a similar counterbalancing principle. This method cleverly utilises a PVC tube that has two springs inside, allowing for effective counterbalancing. With Albany Windows, you have a choice of either style, depending on your home and individual taste.
  3. Today’s modern uPVC sliding sash windows have a proactive tilt-in facility, for easy cleaning. Optional Georgian bars and sash horns are also available for the ultimate traditional sliding sash window aesthetic.

upvc sliding sash window

What’s the difference between single and double-hung sliding sash windows?

If you’ve been shopping for sliding sash windows, then you might have run into the terms ‘double-hung’ and ‘single-hung’.  From a distance, the two sorts of sash window are indistinguishable from one another.  The difference lies in the fact that in a single-hung window, just one of the windows is movable; the other is permanently fixed into position.  By contrast, a double-hung sash window features two mobile panels.

What’s good about a single-hung sliding sash window?

Single-hung windows offer a few advantages over their double-hung counterparts.

To begin with, single-hung windows are cheaper.  With fewer moving parts to engineer and build, they can be designed and installed for a little bit less.  If you’re installing many windows or just a few in positions where the advantages of a double-hung window aren’t significant, then these savings might be enough to tip the balance.

Many glaziers will tell you that single-hung windows are more energy-efficient.  This is because the topmost sash is fixed into the window, meaning it’s not susceptible to leaks in the same way as a mobile sash.  If the sash is fixed into place, you’ll be able to seal around the edges with caulk.

Finally, if you’re installing windows into an older property, then you may wish to install windows that are in keeping with the period.  Double-hung sash windows are a more recent innovation, and so may not match with Georgian surroundings.  With that said, it’ll be difficult to distinguish between the two from street level – and thus planning permission shouldn’t provide an obstacle.

What’s good about a double-hung sliding sash window?bedroom sliding sash windows

Most windows you’ll encounter these days will be double-hung, as they offer several key benefits.

Perhaps the biggest advantage of a double-hung windows is that they’re easier to clean.  You won’t have to break out a ladder to reach the top panel; you can simply slide it down and give it a swift wipe.  If you’re cleaning a dozen or more especially tall windows, then this advantage will turn an hour-long chore into one that takes a matter of minutes.  If your double-hung windows are able to tilt in or out, then they can be cleaned from inside the house.  You won’t need to reach outside to do the cleaning, or employ a professional cleaner.

Another advantage of double-hung windows is their flexibility – you’ll be able to choose whether to open the top or the bottom of the window.  If there’s a bothersome draught entering through the bottom, then you can open the top for a more gradual cooling effect.  You might even open both partway and have two small openings at either end of the window.


Why get Sliding Sash Windows?

From the 1950 sash windows were seen by many as being ‘old fashioned’ and home owners replaced their sash with other modern steel framed windows. Yet, fashions change and more and more people are now recognising the aesthetic appeal and practicality of sliding sash windows. This has meant that sliding sash windows are now the first choice for many people looking for practical, reliable and visually attractive windows for their home whilst making their home trendy and stylish. If you would like more information on our vertical Sliding Sash Windows then please don’t heesiate to give us a call today on 0333 93 98 777.




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