Need input on shop window size

DavidK

David
Corporate Member
I have now stripped back all of walls to studs and it is clear the windows in the shop need to be replaced (they are single pane, really cheap and have been leaking). Since I plan to replace the siding on the shop, now is the time to replace the windows.

I am trying to decide which size windows to install. The shop currently has 4 windows which are up high and do not appear to be a standard size (rectangular 21" by 43" with the large size horizontal) and their top edge at about 7 feet from the floor. There are two of these windows on the East wall and two more on the West wall.
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I am currently planning to reframe the opening and install basic vinyl single hung windows. But I am not sure what size to go with. Larger windows will let in more light, but will cut into wall space. I made some marks on the wall assuming the top left corner would be kept the same and where different size windows would end. I am currently leaning towards 36x48 size, which will put the window sill just above workbench height. What would you do?
IMG_3247.jpg
 

Charlie

Charlie
Corporate Member
David,
My shop is 28' x 36' and I only have 2) 30" x 36" windows in the south wall. I have never regretted not having more. To me, the wall space is more valuable than windows.
 

Michael Mathews

Michael
Corporate Member
since you will be framing the openings for the new windows, why not go see what kind of deal you can get first. Then you're not limited to one particular size. Maybe someone had two odd sized windows that someone special ordered then never picked up and they'll sell to you for a great deal? Shop around, you might be surprised! I'd also check the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store. You might be able to get some there too.
 

Jim M.

Woody
Corporate Member
This may seem like an odd question but what is the entry door situation? In a perfect world I'd put two larger window like you suggested, then two slightly larger than you have, maximizing the wall space. I'd also add a full length glass entry door or even reframe for a double glass door, this would allow you to move larger equipment in and projects out.
 

Mike K

Mike
Corporate Member
David, the shop that I just built, I put in 32 x 36 windows. They seem to be just right not to take up to much wall space.
 

bob vaughan

Bob Vaughan
Senior User
I went with casement windows with a bottom 4' off the floor.
A window on opposite walls. Put a fan in front of one and open the other for good cross-flow ventilation. Dusty or smokey air is cleared in a few minutes.
I put a small window up somewhat high in the metal working area that allowed a window-type air conditioning unit to be installed. Worked great for years to keep the rust away. Finally got a complete HVAC unit. Replaced the window AC with the window unit intended for the rough opening.
Shop size: 24x40
 

DSWalker

David
Corporate Member
I agree with others about the wall space taking priority. I have two small windows, not sure of the size, maybe 28x30. I did want to be able to see out, but when in the shop, I'm usually focused on other things than looking outside. :) Lighting can be provided with good and ample LED's. I DID make sure that my walk through door was 1/2 glass for added lighting and outside 'sight'. That is one way to get extra light as the wall space has to be taken for the door anyway.
 

KenOfCary

Board of Directors, Treasurer
Ken
Staff member
Corporate Member
I'd put in whatever size is on sale. Not trying to be facetious here, just saying price is probably a concern as well.
 

DavidK

David
Corporate Member
Thanks for all the feedback! I love this place :)

The shop is 28x28 with two 9 foot wide by 8 foot tall garage doors and a solid metal entry door on the north side (36x80). There is another solid metal door on the south side (also 36x80). I will eventually replace the garage doors with insulated metal doors. I want to keep the doors to be able to work on cars and to be able to move large projects out easily.

The door surround on the North side has some rot so I was thinking about replacing it. It will be easy to install a door with glass in it at that time which I was not considering before asking here. I will also visit a few stores and look in the "scratch and dent" pile to see if there are odd-sized windows on closeout. I will certainly not be ordering custom-size windows or anything which will drive up the price.

I have bought a big pile of LED lights which are way brighter than expected, so I won't be short on light even if I board up the windows :)

For anyone that is interested in LED shop lights, I bought these (8 feet): https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B07JVXLQ8R/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1 and some of these (4 foot): https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B07Q49DNGS/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Thanks again for the input! I will keep the size of the windows under control. :)
 

DSWalker

David
Corporate Member
Another thought on your windows. If you know any local small owner contractors/builders you might check with them. I recently did an addition to my house. He ordered the wrong windows and had to replace at his own cost. I can imagine this might be a regular occurrence for others. They might have some they would be glad to sell at cost just to get rid of them.
 

drw

Donn
Corporate Member
While I agree that wall-space is a priority, I also think it is nice to be able to periodically peer out the windows. Therefore, if it was my decision, I would not recommend adding additional windows, but I would install windows large enough to enjoy what is going on outside (rain, snow, birds, squirrels, etc.). Since I am retired I spend many happy hours in the shop where I not only enjoy the shop but also what is going on outside my shop windows.
 

Skymaster

Jack
Senior User
Wood knot bring glass close to bench height, one slip and there goes your window. I would make what size you have but in an active window, this way can open and with screens ventilate if needed or just enjoy the open windows. AVOID Mr Inspector at all costs. plus no visible changes, no questions
:) :) ;)
 

tri4sale

Daniel
Corporate Member
I'd put in whatever size is on sale. Not trying to be facetious here, just saying price is probably a concern as well.
I'd go with whatever size I can get cheap from Habitat if at all. I'd rather have wall space than windows, and put more lights in.
 

Oka

Oka
Corporate Member
I kinda agree with the rest get what is on sale or a good deal from Restore/Habitat. One thing I would look for are double hung vinyl wrapped alum frame windows. They will open from the bottom or top, which helps in getting heat out. This type are better lasting than just a wood frame, or purely vinyl type window. Bare alum frames allow a lot of cold and heat transfer, so I avoid those because of the thermal loss/gain. Finally, Hardware cloth screen on the inside is what we had at one of the 1st shops I worked at. They were hinged on the top and you just lifted them up to open the window and the screen protected the window from objects. 1/2 x 1/2" type is cheap and it is an easy fix.
 

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