Window buying guide: Consider different types of windows...
This comprehensive buying guide is made to help you weigh all the pros and cons of modern and rel...
Are you sick and tired of overpaying for electricity? The problem may lie in the drafty and leaky windows close to the end of their service life. The best way to prevent energy bills from skyrocketing is to switch to green energy-saving windows qualified by Energy Star or NFRC. The advantage you will get is quite measurable. Once you replace all single-pane, shabby windows in your home and insulate the doors, you will be able to save up to $550 annually. This in-depth energy-efficiency window guide is made to provide you with a comprehensive picture of the energy-efficient windows market. We covered everything from the basics and specific characteristics to performance standards, costs, best window models, and installation peculiarities. Keep reading to learn everything you need about energy-saving windows for your home.
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Today more and more people switch to a sustainable way of living, promoting the industries to find greener solutions to meet the growing demand for eco-friendly products. The US Windows and Doors market is not an exception. Innovative companies set their sights on developing top-quality energy-efficient windows that help to reduce electricity consumption and lower strain on heating and cooling systems.
Replacing your old, one-pane units with modern, energy-saving windows is a surefire way to save up to 40% of the annual electricity costs. The multiple chambers structure and Low-E glass ensure secure insulation, keeping the premise cool in summer and warm in winter. With Energy Star certified windows, you don't need to use the HVAC system at a max, saving a bundle on electricity. And if you power your home with PV panels, the chances are you will pay only a few bucks for electricity monthly.
Want to learn more on how to enjoy considerable energy savings and a comfortable temperature inside no matter the season? Read through this comprehensive guide on energy-efficient windows to learn how to pick the right one for your home. We'll dwell on the factors influencing window energy efficiency as well as primary characteristics, costs, and Energy Star labeling.
Windows with enhanced insulation properties minimize electricity usage and take the edge off the bills. They're aimed to prevent heated or cooled air from escaping a home. Units certified by Energy Star feature a few firmly-sealed glass panes with double or triple glazing for better insulation.
Here are the primary properties that distinguish energy-saving windows from regular ones:
Reduced energy costs, comfortable temperature inside, improved air quality, and sound insulation - these and other factors make people switch to modern windows that possess maximum efficiency. However, not all energy-saving units are made the same way. Plus, house condition, local climate, and installation quality can make or break your new windows' performance.
Please, consider the following factors to ensure your switch to energy-efficient units will reap the rewards:
Even the most efficient windows may have poor performance if installed the wrong way. Only those contractors who have recently accomplished training courses and got an official certification are guaranteed to repair and install energy-efficient windows properly. They know how to prevent air infiltration and water damage. Consult an expert before getting Energy Star windows, as the new replacement units may become just a minor contribution to your home energy consumption optimization.
Most energy-efficient windows come with dual- and triple-pane glass that possesses two to three times better insulation than regular single-pane units. The space between panes is commonly filled with inert argon gas that minimizes thermal transfer. When researching the window market, you can come across impact-resistant, tempered, obscure, and laminated insulating glass variations. You'll be advised on the best glass option if you refer to a proven window company.
Not only window type and features but frame material affect its overall efficiency. Specialists recommend selecting fiberglass, vinyl, and wooden frames as they have low conductivity and possess the best insulation properties. With Low-E glass, these frames will ensure the optimal temperature inside, not being exposed to climate swings. When selecting a new frame for your replacement windows, consider your house style not to ruin its curb appeal.
Low-emissivity glass coated with metallic oxide boosts windows' energy efficiency, ensuring better thermal protection and temperature regulation inside the house. It reflects UV light and does not let cold air get inside. The low-emissivity coating makes windows a good energy-saving source as they're selectively reflective, allowing the light of a specific wavelength and frequency to pass through the glass.
It's wise to select glass options considering the local climate pattern. This way, you will ensure optimal energy savings, not spending extra on costly window units that might be inefficient for your region. Refer to a few window suppliers to decide on the best energy-efficient units for your home.
Before you start making any drastic decisions about getting new replacement units, check whether your current ones can be improved for better energy efficiency. First, inspect them for drafts and leakages. You can do it yourself or call out for a professional inspection with a further repair. Most times, windows can be additionally sealed for better insulation. Further steps should include adding window coverings, storm windows, solar panel control film, or exterior shadings like overhangs or blinds. Installing thermal-resistant frames can also contribute to your window energy performance.
One of the simplest ways to distinguish quality energy-efficient windows is to check their labeling. Logos that indicate great energy-saving potential are ENERGY STAR and NFRC. Home windows that were honored to get these badges went through multiple tests so that you can rest assured of their ultimate performance.
NFRC stands for the National Fenestration Ratings Council. This nonprofit organization created an energy rating system that evaluates the performance of the whole window unit. NFRC serves to help customers compare available units side-by-side, indicating their exact U-Factor level and the solar heat gain coefficient.
The US Environmental Protection Agency launched the Energy Star labeling to mark products with the highest energy efficiency. The EPA organization promotes environmental protection and encourages people to switch to energy-saving products, including doors and windows. If a window is labeled with the Energy Star mark, it meets rigid government standards for energy performance.
Have a look below to find out how you can benefit from installing energy-efficient windows:
The Energy Star labeled windows come with double or triple panes of glass with argon gas between them to prevent unwanted air and heat flow into or out of the house. On top of that, windows that meet Energy Star standards feature improved frame materials that add to the overall insulation properties.
The Energy Star qualified windows are covered with special coating, making them low emissivity. It means that glass panes installed in these windows can perfectly reflect heat energy, ensuring better insulation and reducing possible UV light harm.
Thanks to the spacers that secure glass panes at the proper distance, windows don't pass excessive heat and prevent condensation. This feature contributes to adequate temperature regulation, keeping the premises cool in summer and warm in winter.
When you're in the market for windows with the highest energy performance, you should follow a few simple steps to make a well-thought-out purchasing decision.
All windows certified by Energy Star are worth the investment as they're durable and have excellent insulation and water-resistant properties.
Here are some of the best windows for energy saving:
Andersen Corporation is an American-origin international window and door manufacturing company that sells windows with the EcoExcel™ energy performance package. These windows have excellent energy efficiency properties and meet the tax credit criteria, which means you can cut almost half of the upfront payment.
Another example of long-lasting and energy-saving windows is sliding units by Ultrex. While made of fiberglass material, these windows outperform vinyl and aluminum in durability and performance. Integrity windows come with tempered glass for better shatter resistance.
The North American company Ply Gem sells R-5 windows with excellent energy efficiency and longevity. These highly-insulating units are best to install under new home construction. They will keep your property secured from external factors like the elements, temperature swings, and noise.
Among the window glass options with excellent insulation properties, we can distinguish the following ones:
If you're about to replace the existing windows with new energy-saving ones, expect to spend anywhere between $400 to $1300 per window, including labor. Yes, there's a huge price gap, and it can be explained by the range of factors from window brand and type to frame material and energy-saving features. In any case, don't let that initial cost discourage you from getting them installed. Over the years, you'll be saving a lot more than you've invested.
The required budget for energy-efficient windows may vary on the following factors:
Unfortunately, even the top-rated energy-saving windows can perform poorly if not installed properly. That is why it's not advisable to make any installation work yourself. Only a licensed technician who is an expert in handling the type of windows you want on your home can ensure a smooth and efficient installation avoiding costly mistakes. We believe it's better to invest more in professional installation than deal with further issues like drafts, leaks, and condensation.
To find a reputable contractor with the required certification and know-how, you should research local companies, read their reviews, and compare offers. It's better to get a few estimates to make an informed choice.
With HomeQuote, you can easily find local technicians, match their quotations, and plan your budget for energy-efficient windows installation with confidence. We consider all your requirements and project details to ensure the selected window contractors fit the bill. Our platform serves on a pro-bono basis, so all it takes to get lucrative offers from local window pros is to fill out the request form on our site.
Switching to advanced windows for energy savings is not only reasonable and cost-efficient but simple, especially if you have a free contractor-matching platform at your fingertips. Here at HomeQuote, we have collected hundreds of pre-screened pros from all over the country. We cooperate with companies and individual window technicians who have proven their expertise and reliability.
Leave your request on HomeQuote to receive comprehensive support from our specialists and get any type of energy-efficient windows installed in a matter of days.
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