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Simple question re window height


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By Adam in Southport, NC on 9/6/2009


Is it typical for the tops of windows to be at the same height as the tops of doors, so there is a uniform header height throughout the house? This is of course excluding feature windows or windows in places where the standard height won't work for one reason of another. Also, if the window and door height are typically the same, in the case of a door with a transom window, would the other room windows be set to match the top of the transom or the top of the door?

I imagine this is mostly personal preference, but is there some rule of thumb regarding these heights?

Thanks!

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By Grant in Blacksburg, VA on 9/7/2009


Adam,

Your understanding is correct.  Where possible, windows and doors tend to share a common header height (typically 80") if for no other reason because this simplifies construction and lowers cost. On our 1854 antebellum home, the doors had transoms, but the windows were still at the same header height as the top of the door.  However, in large rooms (wider than 12') with high ceilings (9' or taller), the standard header can obstruct the view outside and "feel" too low.  There is nothing wrong with raising a header to a higher height.  Just keep in mind that if you set a window closer than 10 inches from the ceiling then you'll likely force construction of an "upset header" (raised into the structure of the floor cavity or rafter space above), and this will significantly increase construction costs.

Hope this helps.


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By Adam in Southport, NC on 9/8/2009


Thanks Grant, that is a big help. Its the little things like this that pop up and confuse the newbies like myself.

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