From Euphrasia on June 12th, 2009 in Window Replacement
Back in the day when I was a child, summers were often spent at my grandparents’ home in an elegant, old brick apartment building very close to the shores of Lake Michigan in Chicago. The apartment was backed by a long, screened-in porch that opened off the two big bedrooms at the rear of the apartment itself. Each bedroom had a door opening onto the porch, and these doors had transom windows over them, so even when the apartment was secured for the night, the cool lake breezes could enter through the porch screens and then through the transom windows over the doors, making for perfect summer sleeping.
A more recent experience with transom windows was just a few years ago when I stayed at a conference center near Mendocino. The guests were lodged in large cabins of rustic, A-frame design. Above picture windows with glorious views, transom windows opened and closed with the use of a long pole with a hook at the end. This hook fit into a ring at the top of the transom window, so the window’s opening could be adjusted from floor level, even though the windows themselves were 12’ up on the walls.
Transom windows are often fixed, or stationary, and simply allow more light into rooms from high places. Andersen makes this type of stationary transom window to work in concert with their casement and double-hung window styles.
In answer to the title question, Transom Windows or Screens for the Sunroom?, a good answer is, Both!
Screens are often part of double-hung windows and offer year-round use. In some cases, screen windows are installed in the window frames for the warm-weather season and replaced with storm windows of solid glass when colder weather sets in.
One advantage to including transom windows is that you can enjoy air movement at higher levels. The fresh air that enters and circulates from higher up can make ceiling fans more effective, or keep a room refreshed without subjecting inhabitants to direct drafts from lower windows.
Loewen offers transom windows in their collection, too. They recommend using transoms as an additional light source that can be tucked under overhanging eaves where they are shaded from hot summer sun and capable of releasing rising warm interior air.
Transom windows can also be highly decorative, accenting the doors or windows beneath them. Parrett customizes transom windows to complement specific types of architecture and windows and doors.
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