Windows & Doors Glossary of Terms

Andersen Windows & Doors: An international window and door manufacturing enterprise for over 115 years. Industry leaders and pioneers of new products who have higher standards and installation criteria. PBS is a certified installed of all Andersen product lines.

Styles of Doors:
  • Bulkhead Door: A projecting framework with a sloping door giving access to a cellar stairway or a shaft
  • Double Entry Door: An opening with two vertical doors that meet in the middle of the opening when closed
  • Dutch Door: A door divided into two parts horizontally, allowing one half to be shut and the other left open.
  • French Doors: A door, usually one pair, of light construction with glass panes extending for most of its length. Commonly two French doors are used for patio doors.
  • Gliding/ Sliding (Patio) Door: A door that opens and closes by sliding sideways instead of by swinging on hinges.
  • Pocket Door: An interior sliding door that, when fully open, disappears into a compartment in the adjacent wall. Pocket doors are used for architectural effect, or when there is no room for the swing of a hinged door.
  • Screen Door: A hinged exterior door composed of screens to keep out insets.
  • Single Entry Door: An opening with one vertical door.
  • Storm Door: A hinged exterior door composed of glass to keep out the elements.
Styles of Windows:
  • Awning Window: A window consisting of several top-hinged sections arranged in a vertical series, operated by one or more control devices that swing the bottom edges of the sections outward, and designed especially to admit air while excluding rain. 
  • Bay Window: A bay window is a window space projecting outward from the main walls of a building and forming a bay in a room. This is most commonly composed of 3 window units creating a hinge shape.
  • Bow Window: A curved bay window that arches like an archer’s bow.
  • Casement Window: A cranking window that is attached to its frame by one or more hinges at the side. They are used singly or in pairs within a common frame, in which case they are hinged on the outside.
  • Double Hung Window: A window that has two stacked, moveable sashes (the part of the window that holds the pane). This allows the window to slide down from the top and up from the bottom meaning both sashes can open at the same time.
  • Gliding (Sliding) Window: A window that features two sash, with at least one sash sliding horizontally past another. Allows for full top to bottom ventilation. Because the sash do not open outward they are an excellent choice for rooms that face walkways, porches or decks.
  • Historic Window: Commonly found in older, Victorian style homes wear stain glass or cross hatch grille patterns are found. Andersen’s A Series is known for these more efficient options while still maintaining the charm charm of architectural windows.
  • Hopper Window: A small window that opens downward and inward. It is commonly installed as a bathroom or basement window. The upward tilt of the window glass pane blocks open dirt and debris from getting into your home. It usually can be opened with a crank or hinge.
  • Fixed Window (Picture Framed Window): These windows are stationary and do not open. This makes them more energy efficient and allows for larger sizes than a window that vents. Often used in combinations to maximize the view.
  • Sidelite/ Sidelight: A window at the side of a door or another window.
  • Transom Window: A window located over top of a window or door’s transom- this is the beam that separates the top of the window or door from the rest of the wall.
Window & Door Components:
  • Caming:  The metal banding that joins panels of glass together in a unique design. In simple terms, it is the lead in leaded glass. The finish usually coordinates with their door hardware, outdoor fixtures and interior furnishing to fit their personal style, preference etc.
  • Extension Jambs: An interior window feature which allows your frame to fit window openings of varying depths. By extending the window jambs to the precise length required, your window is able to sit flush with your interior wall. So, if you have a window frame that isn’t quite as deep as your wall opening, jamb extensions can be used to make it fit. 
  • Factory Finished: A paint or stain is applied in the factory before it arrives to the distributor or customer for a uniform application and look. These are cured with optimal flash-drying and cooling cycles.
  • Grade:
          • Paint Grade: Usually made of a smooth, flat wood made of lower-quality materials because the paint will cover the grain. 
          • Stain Grade: Typically made a higher quality wood. It can also have a rougher surface.
  • Grilles/Mutins/ Grids:
          • Grilles- Between- Glass (GBG): Built within the glass, making them an attractive, low-maintenance option. They create the luxurious appearance of traditional grilles, while offering easy cleaning for both interior and exterior glass surfaces
          • Simulated Divided Light (SDL): Have just one piece of glass with removable grilles attached to both the interior and exterior of the glass, usually with a strong adhesive called VBH tape.
          • Full Divided Light: Has multiple panes of glass that are separated by grilles.
          • Removable Interior Grille: Are secured via a fastener or grille clip and can be removed enabling you to easily clean the glass surface. 
  • Handling:
  • In Swing: If a door opens inside of the house.
  • Out Swing: If a door opens outside of the house.
  • Left Hand: Stand in front of the door so it opens towards you and you grab the handle on the left.
  • Right Hand: Stand in front of the door so it opens towards you and you grab the handle on the right.
  • Heating Components:

Energy Star: Are independently tested, certified, and verified by the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC), and. Have NFRC ratings that meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 

  • HeatLock: This new glazing system was specifically designed to meet the more stringent ENERGY STAR® requirements for windows and in particular for homes in cold, northern climates.
  • Insulated: More commonly known as double glazing (or double-pane, and increasingly triple and quadruple glazing/pane), consists of two or more glass window panes separated by a vacuum or gas-filled space to reduce heat transfer across a part of the building envelope.
  • Low- E (Low-Emissivity): Created to minimize the amount of infrared and ultraviolet light that comes through your glass, without minimizing the amount of light that enters your home. Have a microscopically thin coating that is transparent and reflects heat.
  • U-Factor: measures the rate of heat transfer through a product. Thus it’s rating indicates how well the window insulates. This measurement represents both heat loss during cold weather and heat gain during warm weather. U-Factor considers conductance, airflow, and the heat radiation or reflection of the glass.
  • Lite: 
    • ½ Lite: A ½ lite (or Half-lite) is a single (or dual insulated) glass pane that spans ½ height of the door. 
    • 3/4 Lite: A glass insert that spans ¾ height of the door.
    • Full Lite: A glass insert that spans the full height of the door. 
    • No Lite: A solid wood/ fiberglass/ steel door that does not have any glass components.
    • Unfinished Door: Rather than arriving pre-painted or pre-lacquered, instead they are pre-sanded but otherwise untreated, presenting a perfect blank canvas ready for you to stain, varnish or paint yourself.
    • Weather Strip: A strip of rubber, metal, or other material used to seal the edges of a door or window against the cold.
Window & Door Accents:
  • Brick Molding: A decorative trim finish on the tops and sides of windows and doors most available in 3 inch and 5 inch PVC.
  • Crown Molding: A decorative trim finish on the tops of windows and doors most available in 3 inch and 5 inch PVC.
  • Friezeboard: A horizontal (or angled when installed on gables) trim board installed flat against the wall and which covers the gap between the top of the siding or brick facade and the soffit.
  • Historic Sill: A bulkier window sill typically found on older homes that can be remodeled in PVC.
  • Picture Frame Sill Trim: A flatstock trim finish on the bottom of windows.
  • Standard Sill Trim: Typical nose sill that can be remodeled in PVC.
  • Eyebrow (Eyebrow Dormer/ Roof Eyebrow): Located above garage doors or windows as a decorative element that also deters water. Similar to a portico but has a hinge shape. Can be made with standard roofing shingles or metal roofing. 
  • Portico: A structure built over a doorway consisting of a roof supported by columns at regular intervals, typically attached as a porch to a building.
Glass Type:
  • Glazed: Used in low temperature solar thermal collectors because it helps retain the collected heat.
  • Laminated Glass: A type of safety glass that holds together when shattered. In the event of breaking, it is held in place by an interlayer, typically of polyvinyl butyral (PVB) or ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), between its two or more layers of glass.
  • Tempered (Toughened) Glass: A type of safety glass processed by controlled thermal or chemical treatments to increase its strength compared with normal glass. It is about four times stronger than “ordinary,” or annealed, glass. And unlike annealed glass, which can shatter into jagged shards when broken, tempered glass fractures into small, relatively harmless pieces.
Hardware/ Locks:
  • Door Knob: Standard spherical hardware that must be rotated to open.
  • Door Lever: Horizontal hardware that must be pushed down to open.
  • Electronic: Modern software that requires a code to open.
  • Double Bore: Lock that has 2 holes (bores) such as a standard exterior entry door with a keyed knob and a deadbolt on top.
  • Single Bore: Lock that has 1 hole (bore).
  • Dead Bolt: Single Cylinder Deadbolts are generally used in combination with a keyed door knob or lever handle on exterior doors. These are unlocked with a key on the outside and a thumb turn on the inside. 
  • Multi-Point Lock: Bolts the door into the frame and locks at multiple points at the turn of a key, giving a high level of security.
  • Hinge: Hardware devices used to hang and swing a door. They are made from two connected metal plates known as leaves. The edge of each plate forms an interlocking barrel shape that connects to the adjoining leaf. A metal pin is placed through the barrel to connect the two leaves together.
  • Ball Bearing Hinge: Ball bearing hinges may also have two, three or five knuckles. They differ from plain bearing hinges in that they have a steel ball bearing, or buffer, in between the knuckles. Standard weight ball bearing hinges have bearings only at the top and bottom knuckles, so a five-knuckle hinge would have two bearings. Heavy-duty ball bearing hinges have bearings between every knuckle. These units tend to be durable, better performing and less noisy than standard hinges.
  • Standard (Plain Bearing) Hinge: Have barrels that are broken down into two, three or five connecting sections. The sections, known as knuckles, interlock like teeth to wrap around the hinge pin and connect the leaves. There is no buffer between each knuckle of the barrel. This tends to wear the hinge down over time as the sections grind against one another. Plain bearing hinges are almost always noisy or squeaky, even on lightweight doors.
  • Harvey Windows & Doors: Manufacturer in U.S.A. and commonly known for their quality vinyl windows, colored windows, and storm windows.
Window & Door Materials:
  • Wood: The materials vary based on customer’s desired grain patterns, color preferences, and budget. Common materials are:pine, maple, oak, cherry, mahogany, vertical grain douglas fir, mixed grain douglas fir, alder, walnut, and hickory. 
  • Vinyl: Good option for window materials if homeowners desire a colored window or windows with a thinner profile.
  • Fiberglass: Therma-Tru Doors & Andersen A-Series windows are great low-maintenance options and can truly look like quality wood but function a lot better without the concern for rot.
  • Composite: Comprised of wood products such as particleboard, and laminated lumber like strand lumber. Many contain plastics, polymers, and resins. Highly durable.
  • Steel: Mostly seen for basement or garage entry doors due to its appearance and attracting the sun’s rays.
Window & Door Structure Components & Measurements:
  • Header: Large openings in the wall are made for windows and doors. When the opening is greater in width than the stud spacing — and most windows are wider than 24 in. — then a header must be inserted to carry the load of the interrupted stud(s). A header is a simple beam sized to support the load above the opening it spans.
  • Jack Stud: The header is supported by a jack stud at each end. Jacks, sometimes called trimmers, fit under each end of a header, and they transfer the load that the header carries down to the bottom plate and the framing beneath.
  • King Stud: Full-height studs that jacks are nailed into. They support the assembly between the plates. The vertical “2 X’s” frame lumber (left and right) of a window or door opening, and runs continuously from the bottom sole plate to the top plate.
  • Saddles (Sill): Forms the bottom of a window opening. It’s a piece of 2x stock laid flat and nailed between the jacks. 
  • Cripple Stud: short pieces of 2x stock that run underneath the saddle. And, depending on a header’s height, cripples can run from the header to the plate. Cripples are located at the points where a common stud would have been located had it not been interrupted by the opening.
  • Kick Plate: A metal plate at the base of a door or panel to protect it from damage or wear.
  • Laminated Veneer Lumber (LVL) Beam: A type of structural composite lumber (SCL) that are large beam spans to create broad living spaces and help create open concepts. typically used where long spans or extra strength are desired of beams.
  • Mullion: A slender vertical member that forms a division between units of a window, door, or screen or is used decoratively.
  • Mulled Unit: Two or more windows that are joined together.
  • Nailing Flange: Generally set back about 1” from the face of the frame and lays on the exterior sheathing so that the siding or stucco can go over top of it.  Sometimes wood or siding trims would go over top as well.  This flange is almost always used when the window is going into a new opening, but it is also used frequently in replacement applications.
        • Rough Measure: Measuring the framed opening of a window or door.
        • Hard Measure: Measuring the actual window or door size.
  • Sill Pan: The pan flashing is used to collect and direct—collect bulk water and direct it outside and away from the door or window frame. It is installed below windows and doors, and is designed to protect from water leaking through to wood which can cause significant structural damage and expensive repairs in the future.
  • Slab: It is the door by itself without frame, hinges and hardware.

Lead Disposal: Existing painted and stained siding up to 1978 can contain dangerous lead. Contractors should be certified for the proper removal and disposal of lead. Proper equipment, saws, suits, and tarping must be followed by EPA law compliance. 

Therma-Tru Doors: Industry leaders and pioneers of new products who have higher standards and installation criteria of Fiberglass Doors. PBS is a certified installed of all Therma-Tru product lines.

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