What is the Difference Between a Bay Window and a Garden Window?

You know you want a large window, one that serves as an interesting point of architecture with plenty of natural light.  Perhaps you even want to use this area as a nook with a wide picture of the nature outside.  Chances are that when investigating a window that achieves all of these features, you’ve stumbled across two window types: a bay window or a garden window.

Bay Window

Bay Windows Versus Garden Windows

Bay and garden windows offer plenty of sunlight thanks to their three-window configurations.  While they’re constructed similarly, the real differences are in their styles and purposes.

Bay Windows

A bay window has a central window and two angled windows that flank each side.  The large central window juts out further that the house’s walls while its two sides are posed diagonally.  You’ll often see bay windows on either side of a home’s front door.  It’s an elegant architectural feature that makes what would be an ordinary home a touch more unique.

Bay Window

Bay windows are more than a curb appeal decision during construction, however.  Its real intent for most bay windows is to offer an expanded seating area where one can enjoy this extra space and transform it into a usable nook.  Bay windows are helpful for smaller homes in need of some breathing room and whether the home is large or small, it certainly is aesthetically pleasing.

The center of a bay window is fixed, meaning it can’t be opened or closed, much like that of a picture window.  Its sides are usually comprised of double-hung or casement style windows, a style that allows venting.  Its top and its bottom are an extension of its frame, which creates the ledge that many homeowners transform into a seating area.

Garden Windows

Garden windows are also composed of three windows, although the style differs slightly than that of bay windows.  Like a bay window, the center is fixed and immovable.  The sides of a garden window, however, are positioned in a 90-degree angle, giving the style more a box appearance.  The top portion of a garden window is angled upward to maximize its exposure of direct sunlight.  Thus, this style of window is perfect for houseplants and those with a green thumb.

The garden window also shares the same venting style on the side windows, like casement windows because they let in the most sunlight.  That’s the endgame of a garden window—direct light so you can happily grow plants on the sill and watch them thrive or simply enjoy the influx of natural sunlight from numerous angles.  

Choosing Between a Bay or Garden Window

If both windows are concave, welcome a good portion of natural light, and serve as a unique curb appeal boosting feature, then how do you choose between them?

Similar Features, Different Functions

Here are a few guidelines to help you determine which window style is best for you:

Place of installation:  The most critical factor in your choice is the area in question—where do you want this window installed?  Garden windows and bay windows are similar, but it’s more in-fashion to install garden windows in kitchens (or in areas that do receive plenty of sunlight).  Garden windows, while an intriguing feature, are tucked away in a home more than a bay window because they serve as a place for plants to flourish—hence its name.

Alternatively, bay windows are utilized as focal points in a room as well as granting the room more livable space.  Bay windows are often used in symmetry, meaning you’ll often see two bay windows flank each side of the front of a house. 

Function:  It boils down to the functional space of a garden window versus the usable space of a bay window.  Are you looking for a small area in need of immense sunlight or are you looking for a nook that can be transformed into a seating area.

If you do decide on installing a bay window or a garden window, definitely call a professional to do this job for you.  Windows are no joke and an installation job done incorrectly can mean serious drafts, poor energy efficiency, and potential water problems.

After reading the differences between a bay window and a garden window? One other thing to consider is the possibility of purchasing new windows that have a higher efficiency rating.

Over 500,000 happy customers have chosen Feldco for their home improvement needs. Speak to a product specialist about all of our different window options and get free quote online today.

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