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Single Slider vs. Double Slider Windows – What’s the Difference and Which One Is a Better Choice?

SINGLE SLIDER vs DOUBLE SLIDER
If you’re thinking about upgrading the windows on your home, you’re not alone. The window industry has plenty of options available for homeowners, allowing them to get high-quality windows without sacrificing aesthetics or functionality. Sliding windows, also known as horizontal sliding windows, are a popular choice in homes. Their low profile makes them suitable for places where a casement window would take up too much space.
When choosing a sliding window, it’s important to know the difference between single slider vs. double slider design, as they come with distinct advantages and downsides. We’re here to help you make the best choice for your home remodel.

Single Slider Window Explained

A single slider window, sometimes called a glider window, has two window panes connected to the frame side-by-side and overlapping slightly to provide an airtight seal. Only one of the panes is mobile, while the other is essentially locked into the frame. The pane that opens will always be the inner pane, but whether it’s the left or right side will entirely depend on the window and is customized by the manufacturer.
In some models, the sliding side has a sash that allows the window to partially unlatch from the frame. Unlocking the window will enable it to open similarly to a casement window for easier cleaning of the moving side’s exterior glass. In advanced models, the “fixed” side has a similar latch, allowing it to rotate and open like a casement window as long as the moving side is unlatched.
Depending on the window’s design, there are limits on how much the sliding side can move across the frame. In some cases, the window can side only partially, providing less airflow than a window that can completely slide to the other side.

Double Slider Window Explained

Like a single slider, a double slider window has two window panes connected to a frame. However, both panes can slide towards the other end of the frame. Additionally, both panes can unlatch from the frame in some models, opening the window fully to clean them easier than a single slider or a static window.
Windows that unlatch from the frame have lower horizontal mobility. This means that you won’t be able to slide one of the panes fully to the other side, constricting how much airflow you get from the window. However, once unlatched, the window behaves similarly to a casement window, which has among the best airflow potential.

Single Slider vs. Double Slider Windows: Differences to Consider Before a Purchase

Now that you know what makes the sliding windows functional, there are a few key differences to consider before settling on the design you like.

Cost

Typically, a single slider window will be less expensive than a double slider model. This is mainly due to the fixed side requiring less material and moving parts to assemble, lowering the production costs and simplifying the installation process.
However, it should be noted that the principle only applies if you’re selecting from two models with the same overall size, panel types, frame designs, and quality. A higher-quality single sliding window that is more functional and better insulated will cost more than a double slider with a more basic design.

Airflow

The difference in airflow for sliding windows is negligible if you have a sliding window that can slide fully from one side to the other. The maximum surface area open to the outside air will roughly equal a single pane, regardless of how you position them along the frame. However, models that can unlatch sacrifice some of that mobility to make room for the opening mechanism. In those cases, a double slider will allow you to open the windows more before you’d need to use them as if they were regular casement windows.

Size

This category also highly depends on the window design. It’s entirely possible to find single and double sliding windows that have the same frame size. Additionally, you might find a single slider window with massive panes, which provide a better pane-to-frame ratio. Typically, a double slider window will cost more as its size increases than a single slider, so cost and aesthetics become more limiting factors to consider.

Energy Efficiency

A window’s energy efficiency will be mandated mainly by the materials used, the number of glass panels in each pane, and the insulation work during the installation process. The difference between single slider vs. double slider windows is minuscule in terms of how much they’ll insulate the house on their own.

Viewing Area

If you want a window that maximizes the viewing area, a single slider window is often the better option of the two. However, even this will largely depend on the framing itself rather than the window design.

Design Options

Double sliding windows offer more functionality and come in more options than single sliders. The added designs include end-vent sliders and three-pane options. In these windows, you’ll have three window panes, with the center pane being fixed (similarly to a picture window), while the left and right panes can slide or unlatch from the frame.
Usually, the design will depend on your house’s window requirements. Sliding windows are more common for areas that require windows that are longer horizontally but shorter vertically. Adding a third, fixed pane in the center further increases that window’s overall width. Of course, this can increase the total cost of the window significantly, depending on the design, complexity, and insulation requirements.

Why Choose Slider Windows

One of the best benefits of sliding windows, regardless of whether they’re single slider vs. double slider, is that they take up less space in the room when opened. This makes them ideal for cramped areas and houses with young children. Without a casement window’s handle sticking out of the frame, there are fewer opportunities to snag on the window while passing by.
If you’re looking for the best windows to upgrade your obsolete house woodwork, contact Window Experts. Our large assortment of high-quality windows means you can surely find the perfect solution for your home and get the best installation results.
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