Window Terminology

Window Terminology -- Parts of a Window

Window Terminology — Parts of a Window

When you’re discussing your home’s windows with your contractors, interior decorator, suppliers or others, it’s important for you to get your window terminology right. You’ll look pretty silly if you make statements like “I want the thingy dividing the glass windowpanes to have a diamond pattern,” when what you really mean is the window grille. The following glossary can help you understand some of the window terms you’ll want to know when you’re working on installing or replacing windows in your home.

Airspace Window Grille — Efficient windows often feature two parallel panes of glass, with an insulating layer of gas trapped between them. It’s possible to place the window grille in between the two windowpanes, which gives the window a sleeker appearance and design. The advantages of doing this:

  • A window with an airspace window grille is easy to clean. Without this feature, you have to dust the area around the grille; you also have to either remove the window grille to clean the window, or clean around it.
  • The grille is better protected in a window with an airspace window grille. Window grilles can be prone to breaking when you remove them for cleaning, and this is not an issue when the grille is placed in the window’s airspace.

Window Cladding — Sometimes wood and another material such as aluminum, PVC, fiberglass or vinyl are used together to manufacture windows. Usually the stronger material is applied to the exterior frame and sash of the window. Window cladding offers the advantage of additional moisture protection that would not be possible with basic wood windows.

Window Grille — The part that divides the glass into a grid or other pattern.

Stiles — The vertical window supports located at the sides of the window are called the “stiles.”

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