Many people are looking to renovate rather than move these days, especially if you have a property located around the iconic Swan River or close to Perth’s metropolitan beaches.
Homes in these suburbs were constructed any time from the Victorian era through to the 1970s. Most still feature the original timber windows and, following many coats of paint and summers of harsh heat, these windows are amongst the items that are updated during a renovation.
Of course, you want to ensure your home continues to display the charm and design aesthetics of the era during which it was constructed therefore purchasing replacement timber windows “off the rack” is simply not an option.
Fremantle Door & Window Company is a specialist local joinery that knows Perth architecture through years of servicing the market and, more importantly, specialises in the design, manufacture and installation of timber windows and doors.
In this article we will discuss double hung windows and look at your options when replacing these with brand new timber windows.
What is a Double Hung Window?
Double hung windows open from the bottom up or from the top down. This allows you to gain maximum benefit from the “Fremantle Doctor” when it hits the coastal suburbs in the afternoon.
Alternatively, with single hung windows, the top sash is fixed in place with only the bottom sash moving.
Double hung windows are also commonly referred to as sash windows.
Double Hung Windows with Weights and Pulleys
Traditionally double hung windows use a weights and pulleys system to allow for very simple opening and closing of the window.
Pulleys are located at the top of the window with ropes weights on the side all counterbalanced so that the window slides easily.
As a consequence your timber window sounds lovely when it is raised or lowered.
The major benefit is that double hung windows using this system deliver a much longer lifespan, however, they cost a little bit more at the start.
When there finally are issues it is commonly simply the ropes that need replacing.
What we are seeing is that customers are now just replacing the ropes on windows that are approaching 100 years old so they do last a very long time. And rope replacement is commonly quickly achieved via an easily accessible panel.
Double hung windows with weights and pulleys are common in Perth’s existing heritage era homes so all through Fremantle you’ll find them. All of the older homes have got the weights and pulleys so wherever you see an old home with a double-hung window, it’s generally using the weights and pulleys system.
Design-wise you commonly see the horns on these windows (see below). Each home can have a different horn design so it is essential that you work with a joinery for window frame replacement as you will be very unlikely to get the correct design off the shelf from a “one size fits all” door company.
Double Hung Windows with Spirals
The second method of operating double hung windows is via a spiral.
The “spiral” is a tube hidden within the side frame of the window that includes a spiral thread. It’s a mechanism in the side that’s a spiral rather than a rope so, as you lift or lower the window, the mechanism traverses the spiral thread.
Spirals are a lower cost option than the rope and pulley system and it requires replacement of the spiral on a more regular basis.
When the window is not opening or closing as easily as previously you simply buy new spirals and replace the existing ones.
If your window is really large you can’t use spirals because they do not have the strength to hold up the window.
Modern Security for Double Hung Windows
Of course security has always been a concern and never more than in the current climate.
You can instal your double hung timber window with a keyed lock. The keys are all keyed alike so if you now have a mix of double-hung windows and casement windows you can use the same key on both the double-hung and the casement. You don’t need to have to have a different key for every window in the house.
From the outside, of course, no one would really even know whether you have installed a spiral or rope and pulley based double hung window.
Painting and Staining Your Double Hung Windows
At Fremantle Door & Window Company we offer a painting or staining service where we can stain in the factory.
We also allow customers to come in and stain or paint their own product or we can recommend a painter to them.
Especially with double-hung windows it’s really important that they’re painted or stained in the factory because once the window is assembled, you’re never going to get 100% coverage.
So when you paint or stain in the factory you can get 100% coverage and that’s going to prolong the life of your window.