These two popular window types are commonly found in both older homes and in new construction homes because they add drama, natural light and views to any room. These windows are very similar in appearance and can be hard to distinguish from one another, unless you know the difference. Knowing the differences can help you decide which window style is best for you and your home.

What Is a Bow Window?

A bow window usually consists of four or more separate windows lined up in a shallow geometric shape that projects outward from the house. The individual windows making up the bow window are usually tall and narrow, with each set at an angle to each other, giving them a curved appearance. Some of the windows may be operable (open and close), some not. Bow windows are not the best for creating window seats because the space that projects out is typically narrow. They are elegant, sophisticated, and lovely.

What Is a Bay Window?

Bay windows usually consist of three sections: one picture window in the middle, flanked by narrower windows on either side. Side windows may be operable (casement, double hung, etc.) or not, depending on the your preferences. Because of their shape and configuration, bay windows typically project farther off the house than bow windows. The space inside the window is often turned into a window seat, a bench, or a perfect little nook for a tree at the holidays.

Which Replacement Window Style Should You Install?

Both window types add a dramatic flair to any room. They let in tons of natural light and provide expansive views to the outside. Bow windows are great for elegant looks. Their slightly curved appearance can give your home an almost castle-like quality, depending on how they’re used and where they’re installed. Bay windows are more functional, adding a little more space in a room and creating a cute little area in your home for quiet reflection or for holiday decorating.

You can decide which one is right for you by discussing your wants and needs with your professional window consultant. Only after this discussion and viewed the options, can you really have a good idea of what will fit your needs best. Visit Renewal by Andersen of Long Island’s show room to see our bay and bow windows and decide which type of product is best for your family and your home.

Contact Renewal by Andersen of Long Island for Assistance

We’re here to help! To make an appointment at Renewal by Andersen of Long Island, use the toll free number 1-877-313-9052, or use the form on this page.


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    • The Difference Between Replacement and New Construction Windows!
      • The Different Kinds of Frame Materials and What That Means to Your Windows’ Performance and Longevity!
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      • The Critical Role Proper Installation Plays in the Performance, Durability and Warranty of Your New Replacement Windows!
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