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Window Grilles Provide Unique, Historic Touches


on April 14, 2020


Spring is here, with the promise of warmer temperatures on shiny and sun-filled days. It’s a good time to think about grilles. Not the grills that cook tasty summer meals, but the grilles that can refresh the look of your home’s windows.

Window grilles are attention-getting horizontal and/or vertical bars that decorate large panes of glass within windows, often giving the appearance of smaller, divided windows. They are commonly used as a design throwback to when window glass could not be made in the large sheets available today.

Historically, glass was delicate and large pieces were almost impossible to move without breaking. The solution was to create numerous small pieces of glass placed together by window grilles.

Window grilles in a bathroom window

Types of shutters

Even though today’s technology has made it possible to create windows without necessitating grilles, the style of windows with grilles has maintained popularity with people who want a traditional or historic look for their window.

Victorian, Cape Cod and Colonial-style houses, for example, often feature popular home architectures that are completed by featuring windows with grilles.

History and technology meet in the middle when it comes to today’s window grilles. You can find a variety of options in replacement windows for grilles that not only maintain a sense of traditional style, but also feature today’s conveniences.

Pella Windows with Grilles and Window Treatments

From grilles that give the look of individual window panes to grilles that can be removed in order to make cleaning and maintaining window glass easier, there are window grille options that meet almost any homeowner’s needs.

Here are some frequent grille types popular with today’s homeowners, as well as conveniences that come with each:

Integral Light Technology (ILT) Grilles

Integrated Light Technology® grilles are for those who seek a window grille that brings a realistic look of individual window panes without the expense of customizing a window. Depending on the type of window, either wood, fiberglass or vinyl grilles are permanently adhered to the inside and outside of the window glass.

Some windows integrate nonglare foam spacers in between panes of glass to cast a realistic shadow like individual window panes — creating an authentic look of true divided-light windows. These grilles create the most authentic look of true-divided-light windows, making them a good fit for historic homes.

ILT grilles are a great option for homeowners seeking windows that are an authentic complementary match for their traditional or historic architecture. These grilles can be provided in unfinished or prefinished stained wood, or painted and primed fiberglass or vinyl.

Window grilles in a dining room

Simulated Divided-Light Grilles (SDL)

Simulated Divided-Light grilles use the same approach as ILT grilles, with grilles connected to the inside and outside of the glass. Unlike ILT grilles, SDL grilles typically do not provide a spacer between the grille and the glass.

Between-The-Glass Grilles

As opposed to divided-light grilles that are typically affixed on both sides of the glass or removable grilles that are secured to the roomside of the glass, between-the-glass grilles are, as the name suggests, installed between the panes of insulating glass in double- or triple-paned windows.
The benefit of this style of grille is that homeowners get the impression of divided window panes while still having a smooth glass surface that’s convenient to clean.

Between-the-glass grilles can be removable. With the removable style, the space between the panes of glass, sometimes referred to as a swinging panel, can be opened in order to take out the grille for cleaning or removal.

With so many modern grille choices, creating a historic look doesn’t mean having to deal with historical window technology. When seeking to replace your home windows, consider the wide array of grilles that are available to make the perfect union of traditional and modern window design.

Schedule a free consultation to find windows and doors for your home.