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15 Jul 2019
Parts of a window - Budget Glass

Parts of a Window

Window Terminology: Understanding the Various Parts of a Window

If you’re thinking about replacing or upgrading the windows of your home or office, chances are the glass specialist or installer you hire might use some specialized terminology when discussing your window needs with you. There are more parts to a window than you might realize, and it helps to have a basic understanding of all the items a glass professional might refer to in the quotes they provide you.

Below is some window terminology to help you understand the parts that make up a window. After all, when you’re shopping for new windows, it’s better to have a clear picture.

Window Terminology

Window terminology can be divided into a few categories, such as the parts of the window frame, the glass itself, and the various safety and security features. Let’s start by taking a look at the parts of a window’s frame:

Window Frame Parts

  • Window Frame – A window frame holds and supports the entire window within the wall. Made up of smaller parts like the sill, head, jamb, and apron. Usually made out of vinyl, wood, aluminum, or fiberglass. Window frames come in standard sizes or can be made custom.
  • Sill – The lowest part of the window frame, the sill is sometimes called a ledge or a stool. It’s often wide enough to store items on if the wall and frame are deep enough and the sill is flat.
  • Head – The highest or top horizontal part of a window frame.
  • Jamb – Each vertical side of the window frame is called a jamb.
  • Jambliner (or Jamb Liner) A strip placed on the jambs to buffer the glass and the frame.
  • Apron – An optional decorative trim installed beneath the windowsill that can aesthetically frame a window and add dimension.
  • Casing – Another term for trim, casing refers to the decorative molding (framing) around a window that covers up and conceals the gap between the wall and the window frame.
  • Panel – A broad term referring to a rectangular section of a surface, for instance, of a wall. A window panel can be made of several panes.
  • Fixed Panel – The panel of a window that is non-operational, such as on a single-hung window, a piece of decorative stained glass, or a sidelight. An entire window can be a fixed panel window, i.e. a window that doesn’t open. A term often used to describe shower doors.
  • Hinged Glass Panel – In a window with blinds that snap in between two panels of glass, the hinged glass panel is the panel that opens inward to allow for cleaning. In a shower glass door, the hinged glass panel is the part that swings or slides open.

Window Glass Parts

There are a variety of components that work together to hold window glass in place.

  • Pane – An individual sheet of glass in a window.
  • Sash – The moveable parts of the window that contain the glass. Sashes can be vertical or horizontal.
  • Mullion – A structural element that combines two or more windows together.
  • Muntins – Strips of material used to create the visual effect of multiple panes of glass.

Single-hung or Double-hung?

  • Single-Hung Window A type of window that opens via a single sash at the bottom of the window. When opened, single-hung windows are flush with the wall.
  • Double-Hung Window – A type of window that opens from either the top, bottom, or both via two operating sashes. When opened, double-hung windows are flush with the wall.
  • Check Rail: On a double-hung window, the check rail is the part where the bottom part of the upper sash and the upper part of the lower sash come in contact (the middle of the window).

Additional Parts of a Window

There are several important parts added to most professionally installed windows that improve their performance, safety, and security.

  • Lock Handle– The lock located on the jamb to allow the window to be locked.
  • Operator– A crank handle for opening and closing the window.
  • Sash Lock – A locking mechanism that engages with the sash lock strike to reduce rattling.
  • Weep Hole– A place where water and condensation can escape.
  • Weather Stripping– Used on some style of windows to create a weathertight seal, usually made of a combination of rubber, vinyl, felt and metal materials.
  • Balance – A counterbalance weight to keep some single-hung and double-hung windows open.
  • Screen– A fine mesh made from fiberglass or aluminum that covers a window to keep out insects.
  • Shades, Curtains and Blinds – Various types of window coverings that create privacy and protection from the sun.
  • Hinges – Metal parts that allow the window to open and close by pushing and pulling rather than sliding. The location of the hinges varies based on the type of window.
  • Window Film – A thin material that can be applied to window glass designed to protect inhabitants from UV rays and help regulate interior temperatures.
  • Exterior Aluminum Cladding – A factory-applied finish on exterior windows that help protect wooden windows from the elements. This is not required of vinyl windows.

Types of Window Glass

You might come across the following terms used to describe types of glass or special styles of windows:

  • Insulated Glass Windows – Windows that have special components like argon (a type of gas) to help make them more energy efficient. Also commonly referred to as double-pane windows.
  • Vinyl Windows – Windows with frames made of vinyl instead of wood, aluminum, or fiberglass. Vinyl windows are easy to maintain, don’t require painting, and last a long time.
  • Laminated Glass– A super strong type of glass that resists breaking. If a laminated glass window were to break, the laminate prevents the window from shattering into shards.
  • Tempered Glass– A type of safety glass that has the same features as laminated glass but is heat strengthened and significantly stronger.
  • Low-E Glass– Low-emissivity glass that is coated to reflect thermal radiation. This type of treated glass bypasses the need for adding window film to regular windows.

Consult the Window Experts

For all your glass and window needs in Nanaimo and surrounding areas, the team of glass specialists here at Budget Glass Nanaimo are here to help! We are happy to answer any questions you have about choosing the best type of windows for your home or office. Call us at (250) 758-3374 or schedule an appointment online.

01 Jul 2019
birds flying into windows

Birds Hitting Your Windows?

11 Ways to Prevent Birds From Flying Into Windows

The sound of a bird, no matter how big, flying into your closed window can be quite startling. It can also lead to broken windows and inevitably, a few fallen birds. While keeping blinds and curtains closed at all times is effective at keeping birds at bay – most homeowners want to be able to look out the window from time to time! Fortunately, there are many ways to prevent birds from hitting your windows that still allow you to see out the window.

Let’s take a closer look at how to keep birds from hitting windows.

Why Do Birds Fly Into Closed Windows?

To start, it helps to understand why certain birds like robins and cardinals seem to aim straight for your closed windows. These birds are simply seeing a continuation of their habitat (more trees and open sky) reflected in your window.  Some species might also be mistaking their own reflections for other birds and go in for the attack.

To prevent broken windows in your future, and to perhaps spare a few birds’ lives in the process, Budget Glass Nanaimo has a few tips for bird proofing your windows – the bulk of these methods involve obscuring their reflection.

1. Paper Cut-outs of Birds

One cost-effective way of bird proofing your windows is to hang up paper cut-outs of other birds in the window. You can make these out of ordinary computer or construction paper. Not so into the DIY? Pet stores sell decals that are colored in an ultraviolet spectrum. These decals are transparent to human eyes but visible to birds.

2. Stained Glass or Other Adhesive Decalsstop birds flying into windows - bird decal

If birds aren’t your thing, consider dressing up the window a little bit with other types of obstructions, like stained glass art pieces, or other window decorations, like the reusable plastic decals found at most home décor shops, dollar stores, or craft stores. Even something as simple as multiple Post-It Notes will do the trick.

3. Films

Window films are fairly inexpensive and are applied like wallpaper to the exterior of the window to reduce reflection. Window films help protect your windows and the birds while making your windows more energy efficient at the same time.

One type of DIY window film we’ve heard people trying is dish soap, which, when thinly spread, creates an opaque film on the window. However, this type of film would need plenty of reapplications. Another approach is using window paint as a type of window film, which could be a fun project for the kids.

5. Window Treatments

A more permanent measure is installing manufactured glass such as UV-patterned glass or acid-etched glass – two types of commercially produced glass treatments. UV patterned glass is a glazing treatment that birds can see but humans cannot, which keeps your windows transparent and also helps with energy efficiency. Acid-etched glass obscures the transparency of the windows for both humans and birds. With this method, a chemical is used to etch a pattern or full opaque treatment onto the window. Acid-etched glass acts like film but is more durable and won’t scratch off.

 6. Adhesive Stripes

Rather than decals, vertical stripes might be more of the aesthetic you’re looking for. We recommend using 1/8″ window-safe white tape on the outside of the window spaced about four inches apart. You can also use black electrical tape in a pinch. There is also a specialty tape available at pet stores designed for this purpose, or you can use paint pens and stencils.

9. Bird Feeders & Baths

In addition to adjusting your windows, pay attention to what you have around your windows, such as bird feeders and baths. One approach is to keep feeders and baths far from your windows (more than 25 feet) so birds end up avoiding your windows altogether.

Alternatively, hang feeders very close to your windows. The feeders will draw birds in slowly, lessening the chance of them hitting your window at full speed.  This principle also works with wind chimes.

7. Netting, Screens, and Shutters

Beyond obstructing window reflections, you can also install physical barriers like thin dark netting, bird-safe screens, or shutters. All of these physical barriers can be customized to your window size and type, making them aesthetically pleasing. Sunshades and awnings also help reduce window reflections by shading the area.

8. Lighting

Exterior lighting can have an effect on birds and other wildlife and should be adjusted accordingly, starting with ensuring exterior lights are shielded downwards. Next, go for motion sensor lights to keep overall lighting to a minimum, and choose the wattage of your exterior light bulbs wisely to avoid over lighting. Warm-light LEDs are optimal.

Also try to keep interior lights off as much as possible so birds aren’t drawn to your home at dusk when the natural light starts to fade.

9. Plant Lifeplant in window to prevent birds hitting window

We have seen a few homeowners attach branches or small pieces of driftwood to the exteriors of their windows using suction cups and fishing line. This artistic approach gives birds something to perch on and draws birds in slowly enough so that they get what they are looking for without divebombing the window.

You can also plant trees and hedges or planter boxes near your windows to obstruct the view and also add privacy to your space.

If you have houseplants, consider moving them away from the window.

10. New Windows

When it comes time for installing new windows, talk to your window installers about your concerns about birds. Slightly tilted windows may be an option. When windows are installed at a slight vertical tilt facing downward, the window surface reflects the ground, rather than the sky and the trees. The tilt is subtle enough that homeowners don’t notice it.

11. Consult the Pros

If you need help solving the problem of birds hitting your window, the glass specialists at Budget Glass Nanaimo can help. To learn more about our specialized glass, window films, and windows for homes and businesses, give us a call at (250) 758-3374 or schedule an appointment online.