Preserve the Look of Your Historic Home with New Windows

Image: a historic home painted in shades of green, cover image for Preserve the Look of Your Historic Home with New Windows.
Many older homes in Sacramento look beautiful with their historic facades. And while it is a wonderful trait to want to maintain that look, the upkeep can be overwhelming for even the most diligent homeowner. Windows fall into disrepair because homeowners don’t want to shift away from the traditional look.

But this doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. You can carry out window replacement while still retaining that beautiful historic feel.

Why Would You Need to Replace Windows in a Historic Home?

Historic homes are unique and deserve to be treated as such. They’re sometimes built with different materials and have unique picturesque features that make them beautiful.

Image: a historic Victorian home with a modern office building in the background.
But that doesn’t mean window replacement is impossible. For example, if your current windows are cracked, they won’t be energy efficient. Furthermore, a broken window means your home is less secure.

Choosing the right type for your window replacement

There are various window types to select from that will help your home retain its historic charm.


The best thing about casements is that they can be customized to fit any size opening or shape of window well. They’re typically made with wood frames, perfect for retaining that historic home look. The sashes open outward by swinging on hinges at the sides of the window frame.

Image: an open casement window.
Casement windows provide ventilation and plenty of natural light in your historic home.


Bay windows are perfect for historic homes because they offer style, function, and flexibility.

Image: a bay window from inside the home.
If you live in a small house or apartment, bay windows can help to make it feel larger than it actually is by allowing more natural light into a room.

Bays are particularly popular in historic homes because they help maintain their charm while adding modern conveniences like extra storage and ventilation.


Double-hung windows have two sashes (panes) that slide up and down vertically on a hinge rod that goes through both sashes at the top, middle, and bottom of each one. You can easily open or shut both sashes at once by turning a handle at the bottom of each sash.

Image: three double hung windows on a blue house.
If you’re looking for windows that allow plenty of ventilation into your home, double-hung are perfect. The sashes slide up and down effortlessly, providing a large opening for airflow and light.


These are a good choice for historic homes because they’re easy to operate and repair. A single sash slides up and down in its frame, while a double-hung window has two sashes that move up and down.

Single hung windows on the second-story of a brown house.
One of the best things about single-hung windows is that they’re lightweight, so they don’t require much structural support to stay in place. This makes them ideal for historic homes with small windows that have trouble supporting heavy structures.

Which Materials Should You Choose?

You may want to move away from traditional wooden frames, but there are several reasons why wood is the best option for your home.

Image: lots of windows in frames stacked against each other in a warehouse.
Wooden frames are built to last and can be repaired or replaced. In addition, wood is a natural insulator, meaning your house stays warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.

With a historic home, you need to keep the aesthetic value. Wood is the best way to hold onto your home’s charm and retain its character.

Adherence to the Historic Building Code

The Historic Building Code is a set of regulations used to preserve the character of older buildings while ensuring they meet modern requirements for safety, accessibility, and energy efficiency.

Image: a suburban block with a row of historic homes.
With window replacement, you must adhere to some strict rules for replacement size and materials. This requirement is because historic buildings are considered a national treasure, so they should be preserved for future generations to enjoy.

Benefits of Window Replacement in Historic Homes

Energy efficiency is one of the most significant benefits of replacing old, drafty windows with new ones. New windows help reduce heating and cooling costs by keeping drafts out, reducing noise pollution, and improving insulation.

Image: a person installing a double hung window.
Replacing old windows with modern double-pane models is especially beneficial if you live in a region where weather conditions vary widely throughout the year.

Double-pane glass blocks most of the heat transfer through your window frames and sashes, reducing your heating costs during cold seasons while improving comfort levels inside your home year-round. And the good news? More energy-efficient windows mean lower energy bills!

What’s more, your historic home may lack proper security measures like burglar bars and sufficient locks on exterior doors. Replacing old single-pane glass with tempered safety glass will help protect against break-ins and vandalism.

Image: window glass being installed.
The best thing is that replacement windows can be custom-made for each opening to fit perfectly into the existing structure. There’s no need for additional work or modification to your home’s walls or exterior trim.

Need a vinyl framed window replacement for your Sacramento historic home? The window experts at Bell Brothers have you covered. For jobs that require wood, or recreation of intricate details, inquire with your local historical society for makers who can craft era-specific reproductions.