Tradeoffs: Casement vs Double-Hung Windows?

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For medical reasons I am thinking about minimizing any required lifting around the house.
One thing that came up is double-hung windows. Even with plenty lube, there's a lift there - especially at the beginning of the range of motion.
Casement windows would seem to mitigate that - but at what cost?
In one forum, a guy reported having all their casement windows replaced with double-hung because "We hate casement windows".
OTOH, whenever we go to Germany, I'm impressed with how sensible/functional the windows are: they swing like doors, can be opened inwards, outwards, vertically, horizontally, or just be easily removed. OTOH, they don't have screens....
Can anybody iterate the tradeoffs between double-hung and casement windows?
--
Pete Cresswell

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Two big differences to my mind. One is more psychological: Casement windows don't feel as open to me. The sash feels "in the way". The other difference is practical: In many cases you'll get poor air circulation with a casement window. For instance, if it faces south the sash will block breezes coming from the west. That might not matter in your case, but I wouldn't want a casement in my bedroom window, for instance.
| For medical reasons I am thinking about minimizing any required lifting | around the house. | | One thing that came up is double-hung windows. Even with plenty lube, | there's a lift there - especially at the beginning of the range of | motion. | | Casement windows would seem to mitigate that - but at what cost? | | In one forum, a guy reported having all their casement windows replaced | with double-hung because "We hate casement windows". | | OTOH, whenever we go to Germany, I'm impressed with how | sensible/functional the windows are: they swing like doors, can be | opened inwards, outwards, vertically, horizontally, or just be easily | removed. OTOH, they don't have screens.... | | Can anybody iterate the tradeoffs between double-hung and casement | windows? | -- | Pete Cresswell
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On 3/11/2014 10:56 AM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:

http://www.andersenwindows.com/product/casement-windows/
My parents house used to have casement windows. * the cranks strip, then the crank won't open the window. In summer, I had to pop the screen out, crank and push to get then windows open * The cranks strip, then the crank won't close the window completely. I used to have to use a bent paper clip to pull in, so the closer lever would catch. First floor, I'd have to go around with a rubber tip cane and push the window edge, while Mom was inside and worked the closer lever * Tall windows won't accept a standard window AC * Less convenient to climb out, in case of fire * Casement cranks take a lot of effort to turn. The double hung may be easier, actually.
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On 3/11/2014 10:56 AM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:

They can be had with screens. The older ones had a solid glass that fit in place of the screen, but I've not checked them out for years now. Double glazed eliminates that though.
Only disadvantage is if you want to put in a window AC.
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On 3/11/2014 9:56 AM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:

Have you considered sliding windows? Just push to open or close. Unlike a casement, the windows don't open outward but slide horizontally within the frame.
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My sliders probably require more force than double hung. I have both.
My problem is with bugs, stinkbugs. They move in through the crack if any are open, since I don't have full size screens.
Greg
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wrote:

Its thought that the cold winter killed the stink bugs. I've got a few living in my house during the winter, but I'm on a campaign to kill them. I think some just sit between envelopes or pages of a newspaper, and never come out, but I'm not sure. I guess I'll go through all my papers eventually, unless neither they nor therir offspring ever come out, in which case they can just stay where they are.
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I'm not sure where you got the idea that casements don't have screens. Not having a screen with any window would be a serious disadvantage.
My old wooden double casement over the kitchen sink had individual screens on each side. When I replaced all of my windows a few years back we choose a slider instead of a casement. The slider has a single full width screen. A slider is more or less just a double hung window mounted sideways, so I don't know of that would help in your situation. Is pushing a window sideways easier then lifting it? Maybe.
Even though I would rather have installed another casement, there was a reason we went with the slider. When you use vinyl replacement windows, you loose some glass area because the entire frame and mechanisms have to fit inside the rough opening. When you use a double casement, you not only have the frame of both windows to deal with, you also have the center mullion. In other words, you lose a lot more glass than with a double hung or slider. I made a cardboard mock-up of both a double casement and a slider so SWMBO and I could have a visual of how much frame vs. glass area we would have with either choice. The extra wide center mullion of the casement was way too wide for our liking. We went with a slider instead of a double hung because SWMBO and I are both short and operating a double hung over the sink would have been troublesome.

As others have mentioned, you may get less air flow with a casement vs. a double hung. There is also more that can go wrong with a casement vs. a double hung, be it the crank, the lock, the hinge, etc. The crank handle you get might also make a difference. A full crank will be easier to operate than one of the small T shaped cranks, but I have heard of issues with sills being in the way of the full size crank.
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On Tuesday, March 11, 2014 12:01:19 PM UTC-4, DerbyDad03 wrote:
A few things. First, I agree, as you say, they do have screens. I have Andersons and the screens go on the inside. You can remove them if you like. I have most of them out and only use them on the few windows that I regularly open.
Something no one has brought up is how they fit with the style of the house. IMO, that is a big issue. Casement windows tend to be used on more contemporary, modern looking houses as opposed to say a traditional colonial. If you put them on a colonial, I think they would look weird, out of place.
Another aspect that I think is relevant since the OP is looking for ease of operation, IDK how all the new ones work, but the Andersons I have rely on two latches, one about 1/4 way down from the top, other 1/4 way up from bottom to secure the windows. You don't have to have them fully secured all the time, but for security, if it's winter, etc, that's how they get locked, if you will. The crank moves them in and out and you can just close it, but if you just do that, while it's not going to be obvious the window is wide open, it is going to be a lot easier to gain entrance via a pry bar, etc.
The reason I bring this up is that OP should take a look at some in the sizes and see how easy it will be to reach the upper lock lever. In most of mine, it's easy. But I have a couple, eg over stairs, where it requires a stool. But then again, it depends if you need to open those or not. Also now that mine are 30 years old, on some of them, if you just wind it in with the crank, one of the latches may not reach because the window isn't quite closed enough. You have turn the crank harder to try to pull it in another 1/4", etc and I suspect that is what leads to some of the crank failures.
All in all, the modern double hungs that I've seen have been very easy to operate. Nothing like the old wooden ones that got stuck big time. I'm not sure that the opening closing is so much of an issue. The OP should go try some at a home center or window store to see how well they work.
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While I appreciate the attention, I'm not sure why you replied to my post and not directly to the OP. ;-)
However, as long as you brought up the latches...
One of the reasons I replaced my casement was because it was very hard to fully close. I don't know if the house settled or if the window itself got out of shape, but to fully close one side I had to remove the screen from the other side and use a bar clamp while cranking to close it far enough for the latch to engage. The other side was not as bad, although the latch itself is what pulled it fully closed.
My slider has 2 latches, similar to what described. We never lock the top one since we can't reach it. Besides, the window is a full story up from the backyard. If they are going to go through the trouble to use a ladder to climb up to that window, I say they deserve to come on in.
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On Tuesday, March 11, 2014 12:49:46 PM UTC-4, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Yes, that's what I'm talking about. Here too most work fine, but a few are difficult. I can get them in via the crank, just takes some fiddling and then you can get it to just barely engage and then pull the rest of the way via the latch. I also have no idea why exactly that is.

I have one over my stairs. I unlock the top in Spring and leave it unlocked until Fall, when I lock it again for the winter, because it takes a stool to reach.
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Per DerbyDad03:

I wasn't referring to casements - just the people. In that part of Germany nobody seems to have screens.
Maybe fewer bugs? Dunno...
But it's quite a different feeling to swing open a window and, essentially, be looking through an open door. I like it... but maybe I wouldn't like the mosquitoes around here....
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wrote:

Every casement window both window companies I worked for sold or instralled had bug screens
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Not trying to be the grammar police, but I don't think _anyone_ knew you were referring to the people.
"OTOH, whenever we go to Germany, I'm impressed with how sensible/functional the windows are: they swing like doors, can be opened inwards, outwards, vertically, horizontally, or just be easily removed. OTOH, they don't have screens...."
Grammatically speaking, both uses of "they" refer "the windows". It would be real hard to interpret those statements any other way.
I spent a year in Germany, on the island of Sylt. We had screens because there were lots of flying insects in the sand dunes that cover the island.
My wife grew up in a 7th floor apartment in NYC. She never had screens and they rarely had bugs. When she moved in with me - into a first floor apartment in a complex with trees, bushes and lawns - it took her a little while to get out the habit of opening the screens whenever she opened the windows.
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Per DerbyDad03:

That was the intent. I was replying to the implication that I thought casement windows (globally...in general... as a superset...class) do not have screens. What I meant was that the people in Germany who have casements that I know do not have screens on them.
And I'll go a little further and say that the windows I see there are not the same as casement windows here. They work differently. They can be opened several different ways - and it looks to me like screens would interfere with at least two of their modes of operation.
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wrote:

The german windows are not really "casement" windows - and they do come with screens. One of the window companies I worked for handled a line of those german windows. (and doors) Some, however, are more like doors than windows and are used for emergency egress and do not, generally, have screens.
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really how much does it matter? in pittsburgh weather all windows are closed in the winter, and since we have AC most of the summer they are closed too....
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wrote:

Where do you plan to buy these windows. Germany or the US.
This is about the US.
One house I lived in in the US was built in 1950, with casement windows, and it also had screens I don't believe they got rid of screens.
Also, they only opened like doors, one on the right to the right, one next to it on the left to the left. Only outwards.
No inwards, and they couldn't easily be removed.
In addition, they were often very hard to latch. As the window gets more nearly closed, the leverage gets worse, and all there is is a crank. Then when it's close to the frame, we often had to pull hard to get it to hook into and pull the window shut. Unlatching wasn't always that easy either iirc, from 50 years ago, and I think I do.
And these were Anderson windows.
Also, hard to find a room air-conditioner, but maybe that's irrelevant where you live.

Do your double hung windows have springs or counter weights? Springs sometimes break and can be replaced. I suppose the right weight of counter weight is almost always used. Do some of your windows work easily and others not? What is the difference bdtween them?
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On 3/11/2014 10:56 AM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:

Our 35 y/o home has Anderson casement windows. Look nice. Hate the crank, always in the way. About half of them need the crank replaced, which is pricey. Very pricey. I like windows that last 100+ years. Clear finish on the inside is baked and charred by sun on S. side, but I sanded and varnished the worst and will slide on some slats from old blinds (fit nicely) to shad the wood that gets worst of the sun. I think sliding windows would be perfect, simpler to operate, but I've never had them. We are one story, so washing is no big deal. Our casements have two latches, so if you open/close often, it is a pia.
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wrote:

Get the folding handles. They are pretty universal and I've never pain more than $6 for a handle. One local glass shop had them for $3 each, $5 for the good folding ones, last time we needed them for the cottage - Viceroy cottage - I think the windows were Anderson, but Truth hardware fit.
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