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European Tilt and Turn Windows: Benefits and How They Work

European Tilt and Turn Windows: Benefits and How They Work

Updated: 11.15.2023

By Nina Tsoy

Have you ever wanted windows that open both ways? Hello, European Tilt and Turn windows!

Tilt and turn windows are a popular choice among homeowners for their elegant design and versatile functionality. Not only do they look great, but they also come with many practical benefits.

Below is an overview of turn and tilt windows that explains the advantages of this style of window and how they actually work.

What Is a Tilt and Turn Window?

turn and tilt windows

A tilt and turn window is like a casement window, featuring a large uninterrupted pane of glass. What makes this window style different is that homeowners and occupants can utilize three distinct open window positions depending on their needs.

The locked and closed positions provide a completely unobstructed view of the outdoors. Then, to open the window, one can turn it on its side hinges, similar to a door, or tilt it inward at the bottom hinges, allowing fresh air to enter the room at the top.

The History of Turn and Tilt Windows


Tilt turn windows first appeared in Germany in the 1950s. Early iterations had two single panes placed one behind the other, which opened individually. Yet, it took until the 1970s and 80s, when manufacturers had to comply with building codes to improve airflow, reduce noise, and increase security, for tilt and twist windows to become widespread.

Despite the availability of tilt and turn windows in the 80s, they only became popular in the United States in the 90s. In recent years, material advancements have made them even more desirable to homeowners looking for ways to improve energy efficiency in their homes.

How Do Tilt and Turn Windows Work?

european tilt and turn windows

Tilt and turn windows have the following components:

  • Frame – typically made of PVC, aluminum, or wood and is designed to be both structurally sound and airtight;
  • Hinges – attach the window to its frame and determine the window’s ability to tilt;
  • Ventilation handle – used to open and close the window, as well as to tilt and turn it;
  • Locking mechanism – allows the window to be secured in either a tilted or turned position;
  • Handle plate – covers the ventilation handle and provides additional security to the window when closed;
  • Jambs – attach the window to the wall and provide additional stability;
  • Glazing panes – typically made from double-glazed glass, provide a sound barrier and insulate the space from the outside elements.

Tilt and turn windows open on two axes, allowing greater control over ventilation and natural light, which makes them a versatile choice for residential and commercial buildings.

These adaptable two-way windows are often installed as emergency escape routes, providing building occupants with security and peace of mind.

All of the window hardware is concealed within the window sash giving the window a sleek look.

Tilt Mode

Tilt mode is when the top of the window is slightly opened inwards by a hinge in the center of the window bottom, allowing air to enter but without fully opening the window. This mode is ideal for those who want some airflow but who don’t need the window fully open, such as when it’s raining or if you just want to reduce draftiness in your room while keeping it cool.

Turn Mode

Turn mode or full-opening mode is when the entire window is opened inwardly. It allows for maximum airflow, perfect for ventilation on warm days. This mode also allows for the window to be opened up wider for easier cleaning or for closing the window in the event of inclement weather.

Micro-Ventilation Mode

Turning the handle 135 degrees from the locked position enables a ¼ inch sash tilt for a slow and constant airflow. This is especially convenient since it can be left open without worry of over air ventilation.

Tilt & Turn Window Types

tilt & turn windows

Tilt turn windows offer a number of glass pane options for architects, home, and commercial building owners looking to maximize the efficiency and aesthetics of their space:

  • Double-pane glazing can also be used in conjunction with energy-efficient coatings that can further reduce heat gain and cooling loss.
  • Triple-pane glazing is also an option, though it is usually only employed in extreme cases where maximum noise reduction and insulation are required.
  • Laminated glass is also available for tilt and turn systems and is preferable for areas that require greater protection against breakage or intrusion.

No matter what the choice, Apex Window Werks offer an array of glass pane options to suit the needs and requirements of any project.

Top 8 Benefits of Tilt and Turn Windows

From energy efficiency to increased security, there are numerous advantages to European tilt and turn windows that make them an attractive option.

#1. Ventilation

The varied types of ventilation available with turn and swing windows are a great benefit. The tilt function allows hot air to escape quickly from the opened top of the window without letting strong breezes into the room. Meanwhile, the turn function enables maximum airflow and secure ventilation. This dual capability allows users to control the environment of their space with precision.

#2. Easy to Clean

tilt and turn windows problems

Tilt and open windows are easy to clean because they are designed to open at the top or side. This allows access to the entire window surface from both the inside and the outside with little effort.

#3. Better Air-Seals

Turn and tilt windows have better air seals because they feature multiple spacer seals, increased use of sealant, tight tolerances around the frame, and an improved manufacturing process. This makes them more efficient at keeping out drafts.

#4. More Secure

Tilt and turn window mechanisms have a multi-point locking system around the window frame, which makes it more difficult to break into than traditional, single-point locking windows. Additionally, the tilt and turn system also has a metal shaft with a locking device which provides enhanced protection from forced entry.

#5. Aesthetics

tilt and turn windows pros and cons

These windows are more aesthetically pleasing for many reasons. Firstly, they offer a sleek, modern look that fits in with many home designs. Secondly, their versatility allows homeowners to customize the window frames both in terms of color and material selection. And thirdly, glazing options such as energy-efficient triple glazing can also be used to enhance look and performance.

#6. Hidden Sash

Windows with hidden sashes are an attractive option for those who prefer minimalistic design, as they resemble the look of fixed windows while still being fully functional. Because window frames are the same, it offers a more consistent look, regardless of the window size.

#7. Hidden Hinges

Tilt and turn windows with hidden hinges can provide a clean, effortless look. They have the appearance of a fixed window yet still offer the option of being opened. The concealed hardware also gives a modern and polished aesthetic.

#8. Larger Window Sizes

The size of a tilt and turn window is generally limited to the size and weight of the opening sash, but generally, they can be made to much larger sizes than other styles – typically, they range from 20×20” – 48×96”.

Experience the Perfect Blend of Form and Function with Tilt & Turn Windows!

As a custom European window manufacturer in the United States, we offer unbeatable craftsmanship at affordable prices.

Get an Estimate Today!

or call us (847)-443-5145

Tilt and Turn Windows Problems

Tilt & turn windows typically do not have any inherent issues; however, improper installation can cause various problems, such as operation problems, leakage, or hardware malfunction.

Nonetheless, these difficulties can often be resolved by readjusting the sash and following the manufacturers’ installation procedures. Also, when operating a tilt and turn window, one must take care not to be too forceful, as this could harm the tilt functionality i.e., the window’s hardware.

Unlike casement windows, tilt and twist windows open inwards, and adequate space inside the home must be ensured for it to fully open.

The Price of Tilt and Turn Windows

tilt and twist windows

The price of turn and tilt windows for a whole house will range from $6,000 to $150,000, depending on the size of the windows, glazing properties, and frame color. Prices for individual windows range from $250 to $3,000.

Several factors influence the price:

  • Frame material (timber usually being more expensive than uPVC);
  • Color, size, and profile;
  • Type of glass;
  • Whether the windows are for the ground or first floor (which will require scaffolding), the size of the window installation company you use;
  • Your zip code-labor charges vary depending on whether you live in a city or rural area and from state to state.

How to Clean and Care for Tilt & Turn Windows?

It’s pretty easy to clean tilt and turn windows. First, clean the dirt and grime buildup from your window tracks by tilting the windows and wiping away the debris with a damp rag. Turn the windows in the opposite direction and continue cleaning in the same direction.

Use a solution of one part cleaning solution and two parts water to clean the inside and outside of the frame, and allow it to sit for 15 minutes before wiping it off. Then, rinse the window with clean water and let it dry completely. Be gentle while cleaning to avoid streaks.

Are Tilt and Turn Windows a Good Idea?

If you want a combination of functionality, comfort, and style in your home, tilt and turn windows are the ideal option. From allowing healthy ventilation to offering unobstructed views and natural light, these windows will truly enhance the look and feel of your home.

Not only that, but some of these European-style windows come with clever automation features so that you can benefit from a remote-activated sash, smartphone-activated blinds, and other smart home functions. With great long-term benefits, these top-quality windows are well worth the investment.

In conclusion, compared to a hopper window or double-hung windows, European tilt and turn windows offer homeowners a great combination of form and function. Because turn windows tilt, they provide benefits such as easy cleaning, increased security, improved ventilation, energy efficiency, and unobstructed views, tilt and turn windows are a valuable and attractive window option.

Apex Window Werks services IL, MN, and OH states, offering expert advice and window installations. Contact us for a tilt and turn window quote.

Use Tilt and Turn Windows in Your Illinois Project!

With the right installation, these windows can greatly enhance the look and feel of your home and will be well worth the investment.

Get a Free Estimate!

or call us (847)-443-5145

Nina Tsoy

Nina Tsoy

With over 15 years of experience in the window repair, replacement, and manufacturing business, Nina is in charge for strategic solutions and exceptional operational performance at Apex Window Werks. This allows her to offer innovative techniques and solutions to address any window-related problem, all while adhering to industry standards and best practices.

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