An Introduction into Energy-Efficient Windows
In this day and age, when the environmental awareness is becoming more important than ever, energy conscious house owners are not any longer limited to the choice of stylish windows. Today, their main goals are saving money and the planet’s wellbeing, by minimizing the costs of heating and cooling of their homes. By choosing energy-efficient windows, you will, besides the obvious money-savings, eliminate the outside noise, and do wonders for Mother Nature. So, how can you choose the right windows for you and what are their benefits?
Counting the benefits
As we already mentioned above, there are more than few benefits of opting for energy-efficient windows. The most important among them are smaller carbon footprint, minimal bills, reducing heat loss, insulated from external noise and reducing condensation. Depending on type, size and materials of windows and the size of the room, the costs and savings can vary from house to house. Double glazed windows should last for more than 20 years.
How does window glazing work?
These kinds of windows have two layers of glass and a gap between them. The function of this usually 16mm gap is to be an insulating barrier and thus keep the heat inside the house and it is sometimes filled with gas. On the other hand,triple glazed windows, as the very word says, have three sheets of glass, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they are better energy savers than double glazed. Performance is rated due to various criteria, such as stopping the heat, controlling the entrance of sunlight and air leaks around the window.
How to choose the best option?
There are few things you have to consider when opting for energy-efficient windows. Glass is the first thing you should have in mind. The most efficient type is low emissivity glass with invisible coating of metal oxide on one of the internal panes. You might even want to consider choosing double glazing retrofit, to keep everything simple and affordable. The gaps between the layers of glass should be filled with gases such as krypton, xenon or argon.
What about the frames?
Depending on your needs, you’ll have to choose frames for your windows. You have several choices. PVC frames are long-lasting and they can be recycled, and the same thing goes for aluminum and steel frames. Composite frames are wooden inside and covered with aluminum or plastic making them easy to maintain and waterproof, while wooden frames are more environmentally friendly, but if you opt for them, be aware they are difficult to maintain.
Energy rating scale
This scale is measuring thermal performance of the windows and it is one of the tools to help you in choosing the best windows for your home. The overall efficiency depends on double glazed window components, frame and the air tightness of the window. Don’t forget to ask your installer to explain this scale to you and show you the efficiency rating of different windows, so you can make the right choice.
Amount of ventilation
When you are replacing windows, it is possible to face the problem of build up condensation and reduced ventilation, because the new frames can be more airtight. So try to find new windows with trickle vents installed in the frames, providing you with the option of controlling the amount of ventilation. If you notice built up condensation around your windows, it’s quite possible you have a dump problem.
More and more people are opting for energy-efficient windows and it’s no wonder considering that 25% of heath from most of the houses escapes through its windows. This decision will save energy and your money, so what do you have to lose?