Girl Looking at Open Window Sash

Often times people focus solely on the energy efficiency of a window, but that should not be the only consideration. When purchasing windows, you want to ensure the windows you’re getting will meet your requirements. So what’s the difference between double hung and single hung windows? While single hung windows were once the norm, today there are many more options when purchasing new windows. Choosing a double hung or single hung window depends on several factors.

Operating sashes

Double hung windows have two sashes that move up and down. Only the bottom sash is operational in a single hung window. Double hung windows make cleaning the top sash easier. Harvey double hung windows have sashes that both tilt in for easy cleaning inside and out.


Single hung windows tend to cost less than double hungs because the top sash is non-operational. Installation is often cheaper for a single hung window; there are fewer moving parts, whereas a double hung requires more work to assure energy efficiency. Sometimes builders choose a single hung window to cut down on the cost of their project. If you hire a window installer, be sure to ask which type of window you are buying.

Ventilation Control

Single hung windows offer less ventilation than double hungs. Single hungs provide ventilation control only by the amount you open or close the bottom sash. Double hung windows allow you to lower the top sash in the summer to let hot air escape, providing more ventilation and versatility.

Energy Efficiency

If the top sash of a double hung window isn’t closed properly, it can lead to a loss of heating or cooling and higher energy bills. Because the top sash of a single hung window is fixed, it eliminates the chance of the top sash falling down or closing improperly.

If you’re looking for even more information…

Learn about the types of Harvey windows that are available and what options you can choose.

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