The 8 Best Window Styles for Maximum Ventilation


Having good ventilation in the home keeps fresh air circulating, so you can stay cool and get rid of unwanted odors. So what are the best types of windows for ventilation?

The two best window styles for maximum ventilation are bi-fold and casement windows. Bi-fold and casement windows have the widest opening capabilities, which provide excellent cross-ventilation. Other styles such as sliding, awning, double-hung, louver, and pivoting windows also provide good ventilation.

The design of your home will determine whether or not you’re able to install bi-fold or casement windows, which is why I’ve included detailed information on six other windows types.

Bi-fold windows

This style of window is probably the best you will find for allowing as much ventilation into a room as possible as they fold back completely which provides an open area that is not much smaller than the window frame.

However, the drawback of bi-fold windows is that they are not suitable for rooms with limited opening space, and there are not many screens that can be used with them.

Casement windows

Like bi-fold windows, casements windows allow for plenty of ventilation in a room as they have a wide opening area, and the design of them allows you to control their direction of opening to allow maximum airflow into a room. This style of window is highly recommended by the government for this reason.

Casement windows are extremely energy-efficient because they have a very good seal all the way around them which prevents any additional air loss.

However, there are not many screens that fit them, although some manufacturers do provide casement windows that can be screened.

Sliding Windows

As the name suggests, sliding windows slide open instead of opening outwards which means that they are useful for providing ventilation in areas where there is not enough room for a window to open in or outwards. Also, as they don’t open in a way that protrudes they are ideal for use with security or insect screens.

Sliding windows are particularly useful in areas that need a lot of ventilation, such as kitchens and bathrooms, as they are available with a vent lock.

A vent lock is designed so that the window can be locked in an open position, with several positions on the window track. This means that the window can be open but you know that it is completely secure.

There is a drawback to some sliding windows as only half of each window can be opened, which can restrict the ventilation at times.

However, other sliding windows have three panels which means that two of them can open, therefore allowing more air into rooms than windows with only two panels.

Awning windows

Awning windows are another style of window that is ideal for areas where there isn’t much room and, just like sliding windows, they can easily be used with screens while still allowing ventilation into a room.

The design of awning windows – hinged from the top and opening outwards – allows for plenty of ventilation in rooms while still providing protection from the elements.

This means that they can be left open even when it is raining and so allow for good airflow at times when other styles of windows would need to be closed.

They are one of the most versatile styles of window and allow for unrestricted views with excellent airflow and require little in way of maintenance.

However, awning windows do not open as much as sliding windows and so are more suited to rooms that do not need as much airflow as others or for rooms where a smaller opening is more appropriate.

Double-hung windows

The style of double-hung windows gives you plenty of choice over how much ventilation you want to allow into a room as you can open the top, the bottom, or both sashes at any time.

This style of window is also good for areas where there is not much room to open them. They can be used with security or insect screens although, depending on whether the screen can be removed or not, this can make them much harder to clean.

Louver windows

Louver windows, also known as jalousie windows, are great for providing ventilation in a home as they can open out by around 95%.

Like casement windows, louver windows allow you to control the direction and angle that they open to allow for as much airflow as possible, and this is why the government also recommends this style of window for homes.

Even though second-story windows have limited openings for safety reasons they still provide excellent airflow.

Although louver windows are often known as jalousie windows they are not exactly the same as louver windows have fixed window slats while jalousie windows have slats that can be adjusted while parallel to each other.

Pivoting window

Pivoting windows have window sashes that rotate between 90 and 180 degrees around an axis that is generally found at the center of the sash. These types of windows allow plenty of airflow into a room but are not suitable for use with screens.

As they pivot on either a horizontal or vertical axis they are now a popular style of window as they can be customized easily in any type of material or color and they can be used either as internal or external windows.

Bay windows

Bay windows are usually three windows that are side-by-side and sit out from the external wall of the house. The windows on either end are usually hung or casement windows while the middle window is usually a fixed window.

Bay windows provide good ventilation in a home as the two windows on the side allow for air to enter a house from more than just one direction.

Bay windows require a large area for them to be installed and so are usually in living or dining rooms as they are often made as a feature of the room.

If your home has an existing picture window then you could easily have it replaced with a bay window to allow for greater airflow in your house and to create an attractive feature.

Fixed windows

Fixed windows do not open and so do not allow any air into your home. However, they provide excellent and unrestricted views and let in plenty of light.

If you find that your home requires better airflow or that your windows aren’t allowing sufficient ventilation into your room, then you should consider changing some of them to awning, casement, or bay windows.

Graham Walsh

I want to share everything I know about home improvement in order to help you. Whether you're a home enthusiast or an industry professional, I have the information that you need.

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