Nothing adds more classical style to the look of a home than Sliding Sash windows. Think of them and you think of the their rich heritage of grand crescents in elegant city neighbourhoods, substantial country houses and of course many classical suburban terraces.
Modern materials and technology have created a revival of this iconic feature that is ideal for all kinds of homes, vintage or modern, retaining the traditional looks but leaving behind many of the problems that often went with the original timber construction.
So what are sliding sash windows?
Alternatively known as the Box Sash, Vertical Sliding Sash or simply Vertical Slider, this style of window is probably most associated with the distinctive architecture of the Georgian era though examples can still be found from much earlier, in the 1670s. The original invention is credited to Robert Hooke, an eminent scientist in many fields and a lesser-known contemporary of Isaac Newton. However, it was actually in the later Victorian and Edwardian eras that the style became more widespread as a part of the rapid growth of towns and cities in the new industrial age and the days of Empire. From the early days, the style became common in use in the predominantly timber houses of New England and other parts of the East and South of the USA and still remain a feature of the local architecture in the present day.
Until recently, Sliding Sash windows were still almost exclusively made of timber, great looking but seriously high-maintenance and often prone to problems. Many would rattle in windy weather or let in rain and the complex system of counterweights would often jam or break. More commonly, sashes would be stuck shut by generations of paint on sliding surfaces, as can still be seen in many old buildings today. Just think; we’ve all seen wooden box sash windows in older houses, offices and public buildings – but how often have you seen one that still opens?
Nowadays however, with modern materials such as PVCU and technologically advanced glazing options, they can offer the same long life, low maintenance and energy efficiency as contemporary window designs but still have all the authentic classical look and charm of their traditional timber predecessors.
Even so, this window style was one of the last to gain popularity in PVCU, largely because many of the earlier versions were not very realistic in their appearance and the technical design didn’t always deliver the performance you would expect.
However, the Sliding Sash windows from Quickslide now look more authentic than ever, thanks to the exclusive use of the acclaimed Renaissance PVCU profile system. This creates a realistic look that is so much like traditional timber Georgian windows that you could be forgiven for mistaking them without closer inspection. You also have optional additions to personalise your window with an extra classical look, such as realistic sash horns and of course Georgian bars.
There’s no need to take our word for the authenticity of their appearance. All over the country, planning authorities and the custodians of classical and heritage sites are beginning to acknowledge these modern PVCu designs as entirely suitable for their treasured buildings. After all, heritage is about preserving our history, so what could be more appropriate than choosing something that will go on performing for a long, long time.
Of course, there’s no mistaking the difference of PVCu when it comes to performance and efficiency. No more draughts, creaks and rattles, no more fiddly painting and definitely no more jammed-solid sashes with swollen wood or build-up of paint. Just beautiful, smooth-running windows that keep the heat in and the weather out, put up a sturdy defence against intruders will go on working perfectly and looking great for many years to come.
The same advanced technology also means the Sliding Sash is much more versatile than ever. As well as the sashes moving up and down effortlessly, they can also be hinged inwards for easy cleaning. And of course, that means you can clean all the outside surfaces from inside your home, even on upper floors, so you’ll never need to pay a window cleaner again. You can also be sure of efficient ventilation in hot weather because you can slide open the top and bottom sash together, letting refreshing, cool air flow in the bottom gap and hot, stuffy air escape out of the top.
The Sliding Sash window is one of the great icons of our architectural heritage and Quickslide is acknowledged as one of its most respected manufacturers. However, for those who prefer any of the more contemporary styles of PVCu window, this award-winning company offers a whole range of styles of window as well as doors made to the same level of technical excellence.