Perfect Lighting: The Way Windows Are Made

Windows are very important pieces in architecture. A window can be put in strategic places around the home to let in the most amount of light, or to let in light at certain times of the day. Most window types are made from durable materials to keep out harsh weather conditions and UV rays from the sun. In order to understand what window types can best suit your home, it is important to understand just how windows are made.

The Glass


 A window manufacturer starts out with a few simple ingredients to make the window pane. The glass for the window pane is made from a combination of sand, soda ash, salt cake and limestone. The raw materials are mixed together in a large batch, then mixed with leftover glass cuts that are still suitable for use. Then the mixture is fed into a furnace that heats up to 1500 degrees Celsius for a specific time, then cooled to 1200 degree Celsius to stabilize the material.

Once the glass is heated, it is poured into a tin bath. This bath allows the molten glass to form smooth, even layers on both sides, creating the glass pane. The panes are then cooled slowly in kilns until they are ready to cut. Once the panes are cut, they can be fitted into the frame.

The Frame


A window frame can be made from a variety of materials. The most common materials today are vinyl, PVC, aluminum or fiberglass. These materials are sturdy and can help prevent air leaks when properly installed in a home. Frames made from plastic and vinyl often also contain metal as well to reinforce the strength and durability of the material.

Window frames are molded into specific sizes and shapes to accommodate a variety of standard window sizes. If an architect requires a window size that is not standard, a frame can be constructed to their specifications when building a home.

Once the frame material is made, the glass panes can then be inserted. Most windows are also made with double panes with a vacuum barrier in between to create better energy efficiency. This allows better temperature regulation around the area of the window.

Window Installation


Professional window installers start with a number of different measurements before they install the window in a home or commercial space. They will need to measure the area where the window will be placed as well as the measurements for the casing around the window.

The first step in installation is building the casing in the wall. If the window is being replaced, not installed for the first time, a casing will already be present but may not fit the window type. The professional may have to change the casing to fit the modern window, especially in older homes.

Once the window is ready to be installed, the professional installs it in the casing, makes sure it is securely set in place and tests to see if it is air tight for maximum comfort in the home.   

This article was written on behalf of Sunview Windows and Doors Calgary.  To view our selection of custom replacement windows, click here.