Vinyl Replacement Window Basics

Diagram of windowVinyl Replacement Windows

1. Head

The top part of the window frame, going across from one side to another.

2. Jamb

The vertical portions of the window frame that make up its sides.

3. Frame

The window’s outside edges, or the head, jambs, and sill combined.

4. Glazing

Any glass within the entire construct of the window.

5. Pane

A single piece of glass separated by pieces of the window itself.

6. Sash

Stiles and rails, which surround each pane, combine to form a single sash.

7. Sill

This is the lower equivalent of the head, and protrudes from the wall slightly.

8. Muntin Bar

A muntin bar creates a boundary between individual window panes.

Common Types of Windows

Single / Double Hung Window

Single-Hung/Double Hung

Sashes slide vertically

  • In single-hung units, the bottom sash is the only sash that moves
  • Ventilation regulated by widening vertical crack with bottom sash
  • Screens possible on exterior / interior

Casement Window


Hinges are located on one side

  • Low air leakage rates – a tighter seal than sliding windows
  • Better ventilation – larger area open to outside
  • Can catch passing breezes since window protrudes outside into wind
  • Screens installed on interior

Awning Window


Similar to casement windows, but hinges at top

  • Also open outward and lower leakage rates

Bay Window

Bay Window

Combination of three or more windows

  • Center made of one or more windows parallel with wall
  • Outer windows angled back towards wall

Bow Windows

Bow Window

Similar to bay window, more actual windows

  • Radiate out to form semi-circle

Fixed Frame Window

Fixed Frame

Used mainly for adding exterior light to rooms

  • Does not open or move
  • Provides no ventilation

Skylight Window


Installed in ceiling

  • Parallel to roof
  • Some models can open and provide ventilation
  • Brings in more sunlight than a traditional wall window

Slider Windows


Similar to single/double hung windows, but turned on their side

  • Either one or both sashes will be able to move and slide
  • Provides ventilation as opening is widened by sashes