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Products Guide

6 min read

Main differences between casement and tilt and turn windows – pros and cons

Written by

Agata Gniady - Tęgi

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Although there are many window types available in the UK and Ireland, none can beat casement windows in popularity, it is as clear as crystal. Their use dates back to the 18th century, when their frames were made from iron and crafted by blacksmiths. Casement windows were the earliest form of windows which could be opened to let light and fresh air into buildings. And it was the English tradition for the window to open outwards.

As with most traditions, we generally want to know where they come from. In case of casement windows, the answer is simple: from the English weather. Thanks to the sashes that opened to the outside, during strong winds and rain the windows were sealed because the sash pressed against the frame. And it is a fact that in the old days it was much easier to make airtight windows opening outwards. Nowadays, with the advances in window design and technology, one can buy modern inward opening tilt and turn windows that meet the strictest European standards for tightness and wind load. That’s why the question arises: do casement windows still live up to their reputation? We’ll try to answer it in this article!

What are casement windows

As mentioned before, a casement window is the oldest window style in the UK – the one that came before sash windows. It is typically attached to its frame by one or more hinges. A casement window can be hinged at the side to open outward (to the left or right) or hinged at the top to open out from the bottom. Nowadays, we also differentiate flush casement windows that sit flush with the frame and lie flat against the wall of the property – as opposite to traditional casement windows where the openable part of the window protrudes from the frame. When talking about flush casement windows pros and cons, one has to mention a considerably higher price. As flush casement windows look sleek and elegant in general, they are often more expensive and considered the premium option out of the two. 

The casement windows in the Fenbro offer

Pros and cons of casement windows

We could venture to say that casement windows are so popular due to their simple and at the same time elegant design that fits both modern and heritage buildings, giving them quite universal appeal. Other advantages of casement windows include:

  • Easy opening –  a casement window opens by pivoting rather than sliding, which makes it easy to open when it’s behind the kitchen sink or in another hard-to-reach place.
  • Very good ventilation – thanks to their outward opening, they allow the fresh air to breeze in.
  • Unobstructed views – they provide a panoramic view of the outside as they’re hinged at the sides and open outward.
  • Less space – a great choice for homes with limited space, as they take up less room than tilt and turn windows.
  • Great thermal qualities – especially during strong winds, they allow less edges for cool air leakage – wind pressure usually pushes the windowpane into the frame and thus, creates a stronger seal. 
  • Easy cleaning and maintenance – they allow you to clean them from inside your home rather than having to get up on a ladder.

 

Although casement windows still seem to be the priory window choice among British and Irish homeowners, they do have their drawbacks. It is often claimed that they are more difficult to install and their numerous mechanical components, such as latches, hinges, or cranks, may sooner wear out and break down.

Here are some of the most common disadvantages of casement windows:

Higher cost 

It seems obvious that a long list of casement window advantages does not go without a cost. Casement windows are often more expensive also due to their more complex mechanical operations. 

Less flexibility

Because of the outward opening, casement windows cannot be used in some places in the building. Surely, they aren’t an ideal option e.g. next to an exterior walkway.

Break-in possibility

Due to the fact that they are built on hinges, rusty or broken hardware can make them an easy target for burglars to open from the outside.

Limited sizing

It is especially true for large window sizes: in this case the outward opening may be problematic as the frame needs to support the weight of the glazing unit. In such cases, tilt and turn opening seems to be a far more practical and useful solution. 

What are tilt and turn windows

Tilt and turn windows, also known as European style windows, originated in Germany in the 1950s. They’re recognisable due to their inward opening as opposed to outward opening casement windows. Tilt and turn windows can in fact be opened in two ways – by tilting the window open from the bottom or turning it 90 degrees. When opened by tilting, the window opens from the top, staying sealed along the bottom. When opened by turning, it opens up like a door. 

Tilt and turn windows are generally loved for their versatility – they give you the option of opening it fully or only partially (by tilting it). The inward opening makes them great for accessing outside spaces like balconies and terraces. The most popular tilt and turn windows from the Fenbro offer include our bestsellers, such as uPVC Window IDEAL 4000, uPVC Window IDEAL 7000, Aluminium Window MB-79N E Aluminium Window MB-79N SI or Aluminium Window MB-86N SI .

Why choose inward opening windows

We have already discussed casement window advantages and disadvantages, now it’s time to focus on the characteristics of tilt and turn windows. Here, according to us, the disadvantage is quite an obvious one – namely, space requirements. As tilt and turn windows open inwards, there must be adequate internal space to accommodate the inward opening. That’s why before selecting this type of a window, it is necessary to consider the access to sinks, taps, or key furniture in the building in question. 

 

Although disadvantages of casement windows were quite numerous, we, to be honest, do not see any more cons in the case of tilt and turn windows. In fact, all we can think of are tilt and turn window benefits: twice lower price, more modern and easier to use fittings, convenient cleaning, much better thermal parameters and security. The latter is especially true for the versatile methods at which tilt and turn windows can be opened. Keeping the window open at a tilt ensures there’s no way it can be pulled open from the outside and that kids or pets do not climb out. 

Casement windows vs tilt and turn windows – which are better

There are many reasons why your UK customers still ignore disadvantages of casement windows and value them over tilt and turn windows. For us, the only indisputable case where casement windows are a top choice is in conservation areas and listed buildings. It is there where casement windows are a part of the British heritage and represent a significant contribution to the characteristics of period buildings. However, if you are looking for a window that is simply easy to open, close and maintain, gives your building a modern aesthetic appeal and – what’s the most important – proves to be highly energy efficient in all types of weather, then tilt and turn windows are the best choice.

 Obviously, when offering windows to clients, we always ensure that their needs are met. In the Fenbro offer, you can choose from a wide range of colours, hardware additions and accessories to get the right fully customisable product. If you still have questions concerning pros and cons of casement windows (or the tilt and turn ones), contact our 5-star  Sales Team to have all the doubts cleared up!

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