Upgrade to Energy Efficient Windows for Ultimate Comfort
Need replacement windows for your new project? Why not opt for energy-efficient windows. Despite being more of an investment upfront, hey lead the industry in design and function, leading to better results for your build. Working with Low-E and Energy Star windows, you’ll discover just how superior these products are, and your clients will be saving more on energy bills in the months (and years!) to come. If helping the environment wasn’t reason enough, there are plenty of significant advantages to energy-efficient windows.
Benefits of building with energy-efficient windows
Energy-efficient windows are an important consideration for both new and existing homes and buildings. They are designed to prevent heated or cooled air from escaping the area. Far more than that, energy-efficient windows come with plenty of benefits and various functions to choose from for all tastes.
Energy-efficient windows are made to moderate the temperature inside the building, helping it stay warm during the winter and cool in the summer. Moreover, homeowners have seen a 9 to 18 per cent reduction in their heating and cooling costs each year.
Lower Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) Rating
The solar heat gain coefficient or SHGC of a window refers to how well the window can block solar heat from entering a room. The SHGC of a window is scaled between 0 and 1, with 0 being the highest SHGC.
The U-factor of a window determines how well a window prevents heat from escaping and how well it insulates. Ratings range for 0.20 to 1.20, and a lower U-factor results in better energy-efficiency.
Higher Visible Transmittance (VT) Rating
VT is another rating that measures the amount of visible light that can pass through a window. The VT is represented by a number between 0 and 1. The higher the number, the greater the amount of natural light is able to pass through and less need for artificial lighting.
Higher R-value measurement
R-Value is a rating that indicates the energy efficiency of building materials in insulation and windows. The higher the R-value, the better the insulation. Windows are one of the biggest sources of heating and cooling energy loss. A single pane window has a much lower R-value than double-pane or triple-pane windows. The most cost-effective and energy-saving option is R-5 windows.
Higher Condensation Resistance (CR) Factors
Condensation resistance (CR) is another factor that should be considered. It measures the ability of the window to resist moisture forming on the glazed surface. CR is rated as a number between zero and 100- the higher the number, the more resistant it will be to condensation.
Increase Property Value
Conventional windows are liable to drafts, air leakage, and heat loss. As a result, heating and cooling systems needs to work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature. High-performance, energy-efficient windows are better insulated and maintain a higher surface temperature on interior glazing, which makes them better able to keep the home’s temperature in check and subsequently increase property value.
Eco-friendly Window Materials
If you are looking for eco-friendly windows that are made of wood or lumber, make sure you look out for FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) and/or SFI (Sustainable Forestry Initiative) certifications. These certifications prove that materials were sourced from a sustainable, well-managed forest.
Double- and Triple-Pane Windows
Triple glazed windows are becoming more enticing to customers over double glazed because there are significant differences in their performance. Triple glazed windows have an additional third pane included for insulation, compared to the double glazed, which only has two panes with more space in between. The third windowpane included in the triple glaze keeps heat from escaping and reduces condensation. Another beneficial characteristic of triple glazed windows compared to a double-glazed window is that they improve the energy rating by approximately 20-30% when comparing the SHGC or U-values factors.
Low-Emissive (LoE) Coatings
Low-E glass is a metal coating applied directly to a window’s surface. It can reduce heat loss in both summer and winter by up to 30% when used in energy-saving windows.
Interested in learning more about low-E windows?
Spacers separate sheets of glass in a window to improve insulating quality. The design and material are important to prevent condensation and heat loss. High-quality windows all include aluminum, steel, or elastomeric spacer between the layers of glass. It’s used to keep window glass panes at the optimal distance apart, seal and insulate the glass layers, and reduce heat transfer.
The space between the glass panes can be filled with inert gas, argon or krypton, to reduce glass heat transfer. Spacer bars that hold each pane can also be made from different materials to increase energy efficiency.
Frame materials include vinyl, wood, aluminum, fibreglass, or a combination of those. They each have their different benefits and drawbacks:
- Vinyl windows are good insulators and are easy to maintain but contract and expand with temperature changes, affecting the window’s air leakage;
- Wood offers a classic look but is similarly affected by moisture changes and needs regular maintenance;
- Fibreglass is very stable and low-maintenance but can be expensive; and
- Aluminum is lightweight, stable, and a good sound proofer but is a rapid conductor of heat, making it a drain on energy efficiency.
About ENERGY STAR
The familiar symbol makes it easy to identify the best energy performers on the market.
ENERGY STAR certified products meet strict technical specifications for energy performance- on top of being tested and certified.
Advantages of ENERGY STAR Products
Installing ENERGY STAR certified windows lowers energy bills and saves you money. With more efficient windows, you also use less energy, which reduces greenhouse gas emissions from power plants and other buildings. Low-emissivity coatings on many ENERGY STAR certified windows reduce UV sun damage to floors, carpets, furniture and of course, the residence or occupants.
A window upgrade can be the first step of an energy efficiency project since it reduces both air conditioning and heating costs. More than just cost-saving benefits, energy-efficiency windows improve both the appearance and performance of windows.
Energy-efficient windows are an excellent investment that will save energy, stand up to the weather and ensure outstanding performance. Today’s energy-efficient technology is extensive and can be incorporated into all sizes and price ranges of new construction and remodel projects.