Single Hung Window Versus Double Hung Windows. What You Need to Know!

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Picking a window style can be tough! Even choosing between single hung and double hung window styles can be difficult, since both have advantages and disadvantages.

If you’re buying replacement home windows and have narrowed your window options to single hung window versus double hung windows, this article will explore the differences between these two window types. In terms of appearance, functionality, maintenance and other considerations, single hung and double hung windows are similar, but not exactly the same. There are important differences between the two types of windows. Here’s what you need to know before making your final selection.


From a distance, it’s impossible to tell the difference between single hung and double hung windows. Both window types have a moveable bottom sash that’s opened and closed by sliding up and down on tracks. The screen is the tell-tale sign of a single hung vs a double hung from the exterior.  The single hung only has a screen on the bottom portion of the window, while the double hung typically has a screen across the entire window, top to bottom.

A single hung window has a fixed, non-ventilated upper sash that remains sealed in place. Double hung windows have two moveable sashes.

Air Circulation

Both window types offer excellent ventilation through the use of their moveable sashes. To open the window, simply lift the bottom sash and slide it along the moveable track until the window is open as far as you’d like. Double hung windows can be ventilated from the top or bottom, while single hung windows are ventilated from the bottom only.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Cleaning single hung versus double hung windows is easy, but slightly different depending on which window type is being cleaned. To clean the lower sash, it inward (or remove the sash, depending on the type of windows they are), clean both sides, and then put the sash back. Your window dealer will show you how to tilt in or remove the moveable sash at the time of purchase, but generally speaking, doing so is easy. The exterior of the upper window sash can only be cleaned from outside the house. 

Double hung windows are different because the entire window can be cleaned from inside the home, without removing the screen. To clean double hung windows, tilt the moveable sashes inward. Clean both sides while the sashes are tilted into the room, then replace the sashes when finished. 


In terms of cost, single hung windows tend to cost less than double hung windows. For homeowners on a tight budget, single hung windows tend to offer the greatest value at the lowest price.

It’s important to understand that while single hung windows are generally more affordable than double hung windows, the value of the window depends on the quality of the window itself. It’s important to shop for windows made by a company that offers quality. Consider the material the window is made from, the appearance of the window, the reputation of the company and the warranty when trying to decide whether a window is high quality.

Energy Efficiency

Moveable window sashes tend to be less energy efficient than sealed, non-ventilated sashes. Ventilated sashes can have small air leaks around their tracks, so single hung windows tend to be slightly more energy efficient. If window energy efficiency is important to you, single hung windows with dual or triple pane glass can help keep your home comfortable year round. Some features to look for when you’re buying energy efficient windows:

  • Low-E glass. Low-E glass reflects heat and allows visible light to pass through the glass. This helps prevent your home from heating up in summer, even as the intense sunshine beats down. Low-e glass also helps keep your home warm in winter, even when the temperatures outside drop.
  • Gas filled. Dual pane windows are most energy efficient when the space between panes is filled with gas. The argon acts as an insulator and prevents the temperatures outside from affecting temperatures inside.


Single hung windows tend to be more popular than double hung windows, for a variety of reasons. Their reasonable cost and traditional appearance means that they’re a good option for homeowners who want a solid window that will fit in their budget. Single hung windows have also been around for longer, so they’re the natural go-to for homeowners seeking replacement windows for their homes.

Which Window Style is Right for You?

If you’re a homeowner seeking a dependable window that looks fantastic, is easy to maintain and is highly energy efficient, single hung windows are an excellent choice. The best way to find the right window for your needs is to visit a window showroom where you can try out the different options, explore each window style personally, and ask questions of the sales professionals.

It’s also important to pick a window dealer and installer you can trust, which is why many customers turn to Skye Walls. Consider some of the following criteria:

  • Warranty. Skye Walls offers a solid warranty to protect customers from defects.
  • Window installation covered. Not all window dealers offer installation. With some window dealers, once you’ve purchased windows, you’re required to find your own contractor. Skye Walls offers installation. This one-stop shopping helps make your window-buying experience more pleasant and enjoyable.
  • Customizations available. Having the option to customize your windows gives you more choices as you select windows for your home. From custom sizes to colors, customizations from Skye Walls help ensure your windows will be the perfect fit in every way.

Whether you’re installing single hung windows or another window style, Skye Walls can make your home improvement a success.

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