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I am wondering if any of you have any experience with awning windows. I am looking at a condo with large awning windows on the side (height that almost goes from ceiling to a little higher than the floor). Actually I don't know how they look like since I've never been there before (still in construction). I hear it is supposed to open only like 6 inches from the bottom. My question is will it provide enough air ventilation? Seems to me like because the awning window has an interesting way of opening up (bottom pushes out), the wind is not able to directly flow inside. It has to go around. Will it be enough to ventilate the place if i.e. there is only one window per room that can be opened? Each room has 3 windows.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Can't say for the US market (as I don't have first hand experience over here), but in the UK if those windows didn't provide adequate ventilation (open-able window area) they would not be allowed to be used in the construction of a new home (building). They wouldn't get pass UK Building Regulations.

Therefore if the US is anything like the UK in that regard, I would say those windows are ok! for the environment they are being put into. That said, it doesn't guarantee you as an individual living in that condo will be happy with them (the amount of natural ventilation they provide), as different people tend to prefer certain environments eg

  • My wife likes our house overly warm in the winter and fridge cold in the summer.
  • Me, I prefer the house a little cooler in the winter (too warm and I want to fall asleep) and generally as long as it's cooler inside than outside during the summer months I'm ok!
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In this regard the US is like the UK. For this building to meet code they do take this into account. So it is "adequate", as Mike mentions it may not be enough for you. My house has a couple awning type windows (mine are much smaller than what you describe). One advantage of this style of window is that you can leave it open when it is raining which is a great help if you get rain during warm weather (like the Midwestern US). – auujay Jul 8 '11 at 19:53

You ignore the primary purpose of awnings - which is to ventilate. Awnings are primarily 'air scoops'. As wind encounters a structure it has to flow up or around the object. Awnings, and awning type windows, serve to 'catch' this upward flowing air and direct it into the open window. A simple double hung window captures only the air flow which directly enters it. Where as an awning captures the massively larger air flow volume which is attempting to get over the building.

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