Energy-efficient windows have become more and more popular with homeowners, and it’s no wonder why. Upgrading to energy-efficient windows, especially if you’re making the switch from single-pane or other non-efficient windows, can have a huge impact on your home.
8 Things to Know About Energy Efficient Windows
Windows play a bigger role in the temperature of your home and the cost of your utility bill than you might realize. Whether you’re looking to replace your windows or find a way to lower your utility bills, energy-efficient windows offer an economical solution that doesn’t compromise the amount of light coming into your home.
Here are 8 things that are worth knowing about energy-efficient windows to help you make a decision that’s right for you.
- Energy-efficient windows insulate your home from seasonal fluctuations in temperature. According to the U.S Department of Energy, “Heat gain and heat loss through windows are responsible for 25%–30% of residential heating and cooling energy use.”
- ENERGY STAR certified windows include NFRC ratings, which assist in comparing products and understanding a window’s energy efficiency.
- NFRC ratings include:
- U-Factor: rates how well a window traps the heat in a room. When comparing products, look for low numbers.
- Solar Heat Gain Coefficient: rates how well a window resists heat gain, which is especially relevant during hot summer months or in hot climates. When comparing products, look for low numbers.
- Visible Transmittance: rates how much natural light a window allows. When comparing products, look for high numbers.
- Air Leakage: rates how much air leaks through a window. When comparing products, look for low numbers.
- If you live in a cold climate, you can further reduce heat loss by selecting gas-filled windows with low e-coatings.
- If you live in a warm climate, you can further protect your home from heat gain with specialized coatings.
- The insulation provided by energy-efficient windows reduces noise pollution–great news if you have loud neighbors or live on a busy street!
- ENERGY STAR calculates that installing energy-efficient windows reduces utility bills by an average of 12%. That amounts to $101-$583 per year after replacing single-pane windows.
- The special coatings that protect your home from summer heat doubles as protection from UV light for your valuables. Fading has been shown to reduce by as much as 75%.
- About 75% of the sun’s heat comes into your home through your standard double-pane windows. Most energy-efficient windows let in the light you need without the additional summer heat.