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Different Types of Sash Windows

Posted: 26 February 2024

Timber sash windows lend elegance and period authenticity to homes large and small, from townhouses to country homes to rustic cottages. They were the most common choice throughout the Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian periods. Although they briefly fell out of favour in the early to mid-20th century, they are once again a popular choice for modern homes and commercial properties.

Box Sash Windows – For Period Authenticity

In period homes dating back to Edwardian times or earlier, timber box sash windows were used. These contained a mechanism that used cords, pulleys and counterweights to slide the moving sashes open and closed. The mechanism was housed in a box to the side of the window, hence the name box sash.

Spring Sash Windows – a Practical Alternative

When period authenticity is important, for example, in listed buildings, new box sash windows can be made that will mirror the original Georgian or Victorian sash windows. However, a popular modern alternative is the spring sash window. This uses a simple spring-loaded mechanism instead of the cords and weights.

Spring sash windows are lighter, making them easier to open. They also cost less and are simpler to maintain. However, from an aesthetic perspective, they look very similar to box sash windows.

Glazing Considerations for Period Sash Windows

There is an abundance of glazing options for both box sash and spring sash windows. Lomax and Wood sash windows are double glazed as standard, and exceed industry requirements for thermal insulation. There is also the option to select either triple glazed sash windows or acoustic glazing if required.

 In some cases, such as buildings that are listed by English Heritage or are located in conservation zones, it is necessary to maintain single glazed sash windows. This provides an authentic period look but still delivers 21st century performance in terms of thermal performance and security.



1) What is the most common type of sash windows that Lomax + Wood produces?

Spring sash windows are most popular as they are lighter and have a simple mechanism. However, box sash windows are also available for properties in which period authenticity is important.

2) Are sash windows easy to maintain?

 Yes, you just need to clean them regularly and apply a little beeswax to the sliding surfaces to keep them moving smoothly. With traditional box sashes, occasionally apply a few drops of lubricating oil to the pulleys.

3) Are sash windows a security risk?

 Lomax + Wood sash windows meet the Pas 24 Security testing standard, providing best-in-class protection against forced entry. Original sash windows can present more of a security risk, especially when catches are stuck or inoperative.

4) Are spring sash windows better than box sash windows?

 Spring sash windows are lighter, making them easier to open and close. They are also simpler to maintain. However, box sash windows have the period authenticity that is so important for homes dating back to the Victorian era or earlier and those in conservation zones.


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