3 Things to Know About Picture Windows

Whether you plan on investing in a new custom-built home or remodeling your existing home, you may find that picture windows give you exactly the look you wish to achieve — both indoors and out. These large, impressive windows bring the outside world into your home visually while enhancing the home’s curb appeal.

Before you make a snap decision to add a picture window to your residence, however, you should understand some pros and cons of this particular window type. Take a look at three key things you should know about residential picture windows, from their aesthetic benefits to specific challenges you might need to overcome.

1. Picture Windows Can Offer Breathtaking Views

Of all the window options at your command, picture windows may offer the most spectacular upgrades to your home living experience. These windows can range in standard sizes from a mere 12 by 24 inches all the way up to 96 by 96 inches. If you overlook natural scenery or an impressive cityscape, a picture widow makes a logical choice.

Keep in mind that the sunbeams streaming in through a large picture window include both visible light energy and ultraviolet (UV) radiation. UV rays can cause home upholstery, paintings, and other objects to lose their color. You can reduce this concern by adding blinds or drapes, or by selecting a low-E glass window (see below).

2. Picture Windows Can Boost Energy Efficiency

The sealed-frame, non-opening design of a picture window can help you enjoy greater energy efficiency in your home. Since the air warmed or cooled by your HVAC system can’t leak out through any seams in the windows, your HVAC system can work less hard to keep you comfortable, resulting in lower utility bills.

Even with this advantage, however, a lot of thermal energy can pass both into and out of a picture window. For this reason, you’ll want to choose a picture window made with low-E (low-emissivity) glass. This glass contains layers of microscopic metallic particles that reduce thermal energy transfer in either direction.

Window coverings offer another simple option for limiting how much heat energy moves through your picture window. You can install drapes or blinds that act as a movable barrier, or you can add window films designed to provide insulation (either with or without tinting). Double-pane picture windows contain their own internal insulation.

Your picture window can also reduce your energy bill by giving you plenty of natural light. A large room may require numerous lamps and overhead lights for proper illumination. The addition of a massive picture window lets you illuminate that room with sunlight instead of keeping various electric lights burning.

3. Picture Windows Pose Ventilation Challenges

Unlike casements and other windows designed to open and close, picture windows consist of a sheet of glass uninterrupted by seams or joints. The glass sits within its enclosure with seals running all around the perimeter. While this prevents warm or cool air from passing through the window, it can also make ventilation a challenge.

You can work around this natural limitation of picture windows by surrounding your picture window with casement, sliding, or double-hung windows of a complementary style and size. These movable windows can provide you with fresh air as needed while you still enjoy the plentiful light and impressive view through the picture window. If you know you want to grace your home with an impressive picture window, turn to Fischer Window & Door Store. We can help you select the ideal type, size, and style of picture window for your particular needs, home architecture, and budget. Contact us today so we can discuss your project in detail.