Types of hinges for opening windows

Written by shawn mcclain
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Types of hinges for opening windows
Windows need reliable hinges for proper opening and closing. (window image by photooiasson from Fotolia.com)

On a nice day there is nothing better than sitting and enjoying the breeze by an open window. While a window's primary purpose is to let light in and keep the environment out, a hinge allows you to open up the window when the weather calls for it. It's useful to look at some types of hinges and how they are used for windows.

Butt hinges

Butt hinges are the most common type of hinge for doors, but they are also installed in windows that have a wooden frame. Butt hinges are composed of two metal leaves that are fastened to abutting surfaces on a door or window and connected by a pin. You will have to cut recesses in the window and the window frame to install a butt hinge.

Continuous hinges

Continuous hinges are also known as piano hinges because of their appearance. Continuous hinges are composed of two leaves that run most of the length of the window, with a long pin running between them to hold them together. This is often the type of hinge used in the top of awning windows.

Center pivot hinges

Center pivot hinges are composed of two long metal leaves connected in the middle by a fastened bearing. These hinges are fastened to both sides of the window and allow it to rotate up to 360 degrees.

Parliament hinges

Parliament hinges look similar to butt hinges, but are a little longer--which allows the window to swing open wide enough to avoid trim. Parliament hinges are also ideal for deep-set casement windows.

Flush hinges

Flush hinges also look similar to butt hinges--and they function in nearly the same manner. The only difference is that in a flush hinge, one of the leaves fits inside of the other when the window is closed. This allows you to install the hinge right into the window and window jam without having to cut a recess.

Awning windows

In addition to being hinged at the top, awning windows also have a three- or four-bar hinge at the bottom. These prevent the window from opening too far and putting too much stress on the hinge, and also allow the window to stay open.

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