We get it – there are so many window styles out there that it is hard to keep them all straight. Some windows like “bay” and “bow” have such similar names and styles that it is even more complicated to sort out their differences.
A bay window is a protruding window that usually consists of 3 panes set up in an angled configuration. The center pane is fixed while the side panes may be either fixed or vented. Bay windows tend to have a contemporary, modern feel.
A bow window also protrudes from the side of the house. It typically has 4 or 5 smaller panes that fit together to create a gently rounded appearance. The panes may all be fixed or vented. Traditionally, bow windows speak to the Victorian style of architecture and are often used to evoke a sense of vintage charm.
One of the primary purposes of a window is to allow natural light to enter the home. The larger the pane size and the more panes a window has, the more light it lets in. Light streams in through the many panes of a bow window while a bay window isn’t quite as sunny.
Part of the appeal of any sort of protruding window in a home is the additional interior space that is gained. If you imagine yourself providing a few sun-loving plants with a happy home in your new window, a bow window will suit your needs just fine. For the bookworm who envisions curling up on windowsill cushion to savor a good book and a cup of tea, a bay window offers a much more comfortable and spacious porch.
Some homes have limited amounts of wall space or feature floorplans that flow more smoothly with some window configurations than others. Bay windows are a good choice if you are in the market for a protruding window that isn’t overly wide. From a placement and style perspective, bow windows offer an opportunity to do something different. Unlike bay windows, bow windows may be positioned to wrap around the corner of a building to form a turret shape and create a statement nook area inside.
If you have researched your options and are still on the fence between the bay and bow styles, the cost may be the tipping point. More openings and more individual panes of glass make the bow window more expensive than the bay window. All else being equal, if you are looking for a more economical choice, we recommend a bay window.
We want YOU to win the battle between bay windows vs bow windows. No matter which window style you have in mind, we have the expertise that can make the decision-making process smoother. When you are ready to price the options, we will provide you with our best window quote right away so you can make the decision that is best for you and your home. Let’s get started!