Tilt in Windows: From Conundrum to Solution

Tilt in Windows started to get popular in the early 1990’s and chances are if your customer has bought a home in the last decade or so there is a high probability that they have tilt in windows in their house.

Very few homeowners even realize that their windows are tilt in and that may require a more detailed discussion when choosing shutter frames.

First of all, why are home builders using this style of window?

Benefits of Tilt-In

  • Tilting the window sash into the room allows the homeowner to clean the exterior glass from inside the home. This can be helpful if the window is on a second floor. No ladder is needed.
  • Window sashes that tilt into the home can usually be lifted completely away from the window frame without uninstalling the window entirely. This is handy if for any reason the glass were to break. A completely new window would not be needed. The manufacturer would simply send a new sash, complete with new glass that replaces the broken one.

Design Process

As the window covering professional, you’ll need to evaluate the window and the entire window opening. You will need to check if the window has locks either located on the sash or on the side of the window frame. Sometimes the lock is by the sill area, or your customer may even have window cranks.

If you choose an inside mounted frame such as inside L frame, Z frame or Hang Strip, you will probably be impeding the window from tilting into the room. This could be a serious mistake!

Blocking your customer's window from tilting in, could potentially be a fire risk (how would the homeowner tilt the window in and climb out?) It could also fail a house inspection when the owner decides to sell the home.

If you do not inform your customer their windows are tilt in, they will eventually find out when they go to clean the windows and find out they cannot remove the bug screen. This could cost you thousands of dollars with replacing the shutters with an outside mounted frame.


There is a simple solution! You can easily work around tilt in windows with an outside mounted Deco frame or outside mounted L frame.

Be careful when selecting Deco frames, as the light block strip could still impede the tilt in window if you are trying to line up the edge of the Deco frame with the edge of the windowsill.

Take the Deco sample piece out of your sample case and line it up on the sill, tilt the window in and make sure you have clearance. If the tilt in window hits the Deco frame light block, simply move the frame out wider and allow a ¼” gap.

Make sure you measure tip to tip on the frame that way the factory will know exactly how wide and tall to make the shutter without guessing anything.

Design Benefits

Other benefits of selecting outside mounted Deco or L frames are they will cover up window openings that aren’t square, and uneven drywall. It can also make installation easier, as it's just like hanging a picture frame. Your installer is not restricted by the inside window jamb and the installer can easily rack the shutter making it level and square.

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