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What Are Bay Windows?

4/10/2016 1:13:20 PM

As you compare different window styles that you might want in your new home, you’re wise to consider bay windows. This architectural style features three windows that jut outward from the square dimensions of the room. You see a lot of bay windows in San Francisco and Victorian style homes.
 
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With this architectural option, the middle window runs parallel to the walls inside while the two surrounding windows are angled inward. The installation typically hangs about 2 to 3 feet off the foundation. Bay windows can also be installed on the second floor of your home.

Benefits of Bay Windows

If you’re looking to add visual interest to the exterior of your home, bay windows are a great option. They also make the interior feel a little larger, let in more light and allow for more expansive views.

Bay windows are flexible since you can choose what type of operation style you want to install. Double-hung windows are a popular choice. Casement windows are another option, in which case the outer two windows swing out toward each other and the center window doesn’t operate at all.

The size and angle of bay windows are also flexible. In some installations, the windows run from floor to ceiling. Others start a few inches below the ceiling and stop several feet below the floor, leaving room for a cushioned window seat and storage bench if you so desire.
 

Building Considerations

If you want to add bay windows to your existing home, you will likely need a special building permit. Supports may be required if you install the windows above ground floor with no matching windows below.

It’s also important to properly insulate the structural framing around the windows to ensure the architectural feature doesn’t make your home drafty in the winter. In the end, the installation process is easiest if you rely on a professional window installer who can take care of all necessary permitting, paperwork and craftsmanship details.
 

Variations on Bay Windows

A recessed bay window projects inward rather than outward. While this removes space from the room, it brings in additional natural light and allows for expansive views. This is a good choice if you like the look of bay windows but can’t secure a permit to build beyond the exterior wall.

A bow window is another variation that comes in two main forms. The first is a three-window opening with curved glass panes. This creates a true semi-circle protruding from the exterior wall. The second form is a four- or five-window opening with flat glass panes set at shallower angles from one another than a standard bay window.

The final variation is a square bay window, which protrudes from the exterior wall at 90 degrees for more angular architecture.
 

Find a Bay Window Installer Near You

Do bay windows sound like the right addition to your home? You can learn more about these and other window products from Weather Shield – just contact us directly or find a Weather Shield dealer near you for more information.
 

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