04 September 2012

Une fenêtre oscillo-battante

The new living-room window we had installed yesterday consists of two fixed side panels and one central panel that opens. There are two ways of opening it: the middle panel can swing into the room on its side hinges (like a door), or it can "tilt" slightly into the room on bottom hinges. The point is to be able to let air in or out of the room without opening the window all the way and letting cats, birds, or burglars in.

The new air-tight, double-glazed tilt-and-turn window

Oscillo-battant : type de châssis de fenêtre permettant de l'utiliser comme un battant ou comme une fenêtre oscillante. In English, this is called a "tilt-and-turn" window, apparently. It's a very common type of window in Europe. Several years ago, we had one installed in our W.C., which is the half-bath where the toilet is located (there's no toilet in the main bathroom). It's very practical for ventilation.

Window installer Serge Roch getting ready to put in the
new window frame on a warm summer day

Battant is an interesting word in French. Whenever talk turns to doors, windows, or shutters, you hear it. I'm not sure what the translation is. The battant is the door or window panel that hangs on hinges and can be opened. French windows and door open into the room, whereas English windows and door open to the exterior. I guess the battant is the door panel. A double door is a porte à deux battants.

In this photo, you can see the window tilted slightly into the room for ventilation
and held in place by hardware. There's tennis on TV.

The job took only about three hours to complete. Serge Roch, who has installed half a dozen windows for us over the years, always does a good job, and his fees are reasonable. We were lucky to make his acquaintance in 2004, when we were starting our renovations.

We've had good luck growing coleus plants on our north facing window ledge this summer.

Now I'm almost eager to have some cold weather so that we can feel the benefits of the new window. I posted this picture of the old window yesterday.


  1. Brilliant. It looks much nicer than the old window and the room will be so much cosier.

  2. Jean, it's amazing how much cleaner and open it looks. Now we have to get the big French door/window done between the living room and the terrace. That's for another year.

  3. Ah! It looks wonderful! I believe that I had this kind of tilt-n-turn window in my dorm-room lodging when I was in Paris last for a class. I liked the variety it gave. Yours looks nice, and the plants outside are looooovely:)


  4. Looks great. It seems that most gites we've rented in France (and many hotels) have this type of window, yet I don't know if I've ever seen one in the US. They seem so practical, and also seem so sound proof.

  5. Will remind you of your wish for cold weather in a few months;) I wish we could buy windows like that, but we'd get too many bugs for sure where I live.

    The photo with the coleus is beautiful!

  6. Ken, hold off on that cold weather delivery, please. We are in France now and we're hoping for good weather. If you could wait till October to make the weather turn cold, we'd appreciate it!

  7. Carolyn, hope you are having fun. As for the weather, I have no such powers. If I did.....

    Evelyn, ha ha ha

    All, thanks, hope you are enjoying your windows on the world where you are.

  8. Ken, love the window! I feel such a sense of balance when I look at the way your home is decorated. Very well done. :) It is something I aim for here but never quite attain.


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