The Ultimate Guide to Window Grilles and Inserts

June 10, 2022



Ultimate Guide To Window Grilles And Inserts - Clera Windows + Doors

Historically, window grilles had a structural purpose. They were used to hold small pieces of glass together since technology back then did not allow for the easy manufacturing of large sheets of glass. Nowadays, using decorative window grille inserts or SDLs (Simulated Divided Lite) is a way to preserve the beauty of traditional window styles without compromising energy efficiency and comfort.

These decorative elements can form squares, diamonds, and other creative borders to adorn any type of window.

Read on to learn more about what a window grille is and the details of the different types of window grille inserts.

Ultimate Guide to Window Grilles and Inserts - Clera Windows + Doors

What Is a Window Grille?

A “window grille” pertains to the bars that form patterns across a window panel’s glass. These patterns can be installed on virtually all kinds of windows and are also known as muntins and window grids. For modern windows, a window grille can be either removable or not, depending on the type that you choose.

These grids are usually made of wood, vinyl, or metal. Though they are made of tough materials, they are not intended for reinforcing security; their main purpose is to add an ornamental touch

Are Window Grids Outdated?

No. Just because window grilles used to be a necessity for larger windows, built-in window grilles and window grille inserts are now typically associated with traditional styles. Having the right type of window grille is even more essential if your home has any of the following (or similar) architectural styles:

There are many owners of older style homes in Canada who desire to retain its historical charm. This is one reason why window grids are nowhere near becoming outdated.

In addition, some newer styles take inspiration from traditional styles. Cottagecore, modern Victorian, and modern farmhouse styles are just a few examples. This is yet another reason why we won’t be saying goodbye to window grilles anytime soon.

Ultimate Guide to Window Grilles and Inserts - Clera Windows + Doors

SDL Window Grille Inserts vs GBG

If you’re thinking of getting window grilles, the first thing you need to do is choose between SDL (simulated divided lite) and GBG (grilles between glass). You may have encountered these acronyms from home improvement forums and niche blogs. Now, it’s time to demystify them and unpack their unique pros and cons.  

Simulated Divided Lites (SDLs)

SDL window grilles are found on the outside surface of modern double pane glass windows. They can adorn the interior side, exterior side, or both. Some SDLs are incorporated into the window frame, while others are available as removable window grille inserts.

SDL Window Grilles
Pros Cons
  • Some types of SDLs are removable.
  • SDLs (especially when found on both sides of the window) are more convincing than GBGs.
  • SDLs that are incorporated into the window frame provide some additional security (even if this isn’t their main purpose).
  • Because they are found on the interior side, exterior side, or both, their nooks and crannies can be challenging to clean.

Grilles Between Glass (GBGs)

As the name suggests, GBG window grilles are installed inside the insulated glass unit or double pane glass. They are always built into the window glass, which means there are no removable options. 

GBG Window Grilles
Pros Cons
  • Because they are inside the glass, they require no additional cleaning effort, apart from the occasional glass cleaning.
  • They may provide additional security if they are of substantial thickness (this is, however, not their main purpose.)
  • Some homeowners like the sleek appearance of grilles incorporated under reflective glass.
  • You won’t find removable GBGs.
  • GBGs are not as convincing as SDLs.

What Are the Different Window Grille Styles?

Once you’ve chosen between SDLs and GBGs, it’s time to look at different window grille styles that can boost the appearance of your home. Here at Clera Windows + Doors, we offer various window grille styles to complement customized windows. 

Here are some examples:

1. Brass Prairie Grille

If you want the adornment of window grilles with minimal view obstruction, then our brass prairie grilles are a perfect choice. These types of grilles are found on the borders of the window. And because this specific type is made of brass, they have an elegant and antique-like charm that’s perfect for a wide variety of traditional home styles. 

2. Colonial Grille

The colonial window grille is one of the most well-known patterns out there. As such, there are numerous ways to incorporate colonial grilles, whether you choose to have them built-in (SDL or GBG) or as SDL window grille inserts. This style consists of a grid that forms squares on the glass. As the name suggests, these are perfect for colonial-style homes and other similar styles (such as modern farmhouse and craftsman style). 

3. Pewter Prairie Grille

Pewter is a dark metal alloy. When it is used for creating unobstructive prairie window grille patterns, it gives a formal and elegant effect that suits many traditional-style homes.

4. 5/8” Pewter Colonial Grille

As colonial grilles, the dark hue of the pewter alloy creates an understated look. Unlike typical colonial grilles, one would need to look closer to see the pattern of pewter colonial grilles. To some homeowners, this subtleness suits their style the best.

5. Georgian Grille

Though the Georgian window grille pattern may look like the typical colonial grille, they have some subtle differences. The bars on a Georgian window grille have fine lines that add a subtle but decorative touch.

Georgian Window Grille Styles - Clera Windows + Doors

Get Top-Quality Window Grilles For Your Home

For the past 41+ years, Clera Windows + Doors has been elevating the homes of hundreds of homeowners with top quality windows, doors, and grilles. 

Here at Clera, we manufacture and install custom windows and grilles that match your needs. Our windows are also designed with boosted energy efficiency and durability that will serve you for years to come.

If you would like to learn more about our custom windows or window grille inserts, contact us today!

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