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Tips for Buying Energy-Efficient Windows


No home can be complete without windows. They act as natural lighting, ventilation, and insulation sources. However, old or inefficient windows can lead to high energy bills and discomfort in your home. Therefore, during purchases, one must consider the energy performance of windows. Naturally, questions arise. How do you identify which windows are energy efficient or what aspects should be evaluated when purchasing windows?

What Are Energy-Efficient Windows?

Energy-efficient windows are characterized by high thermal resistance, which prevents too much heat exchange. Therefore, they help maintain warmth inside the house during winter and cool air there in the summertime. Such windows also minimize condensation and prevent unwanted ultraviolet light in your home.


<h2>Factors to Consider When Buying Energy-Efficient Windows</h2>

There are several factors you should keep in mind when purchasing energy-efficient windows. The first one is material. The most energy-efficient materials for windows are vinyl, fiberglass, and wood-clad frames. These materials have a high thermal resistance and require minimal maintenance. Additionally, look for windows with multiple glass panes with low-emissivity (Low-E) coating. This coating helps reduce heat transfer through the window, allowing natural light to enter your home.


The second factor is the window’s U-factor. This measures the window’s insulation ability, with a lower U-factor indicating better insulation. In cold climates, look for windows with a low U-factor to keep the heat inside your home. In warm climates, look for windows with a high solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC), indicating how much solar radiation enters the window.


The third factor is the one just mentioned, solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC), which measures how well a window blocks heat from the sun. In hot climates, choosing windows with a low SHGC is important to prevent excess heat from entering your home. In colder climates, a higher SHGC can help provide natural warmth during winter.


The fourth factor to consider is air leakage. Windows with a lower air leakage rating are more energy-efficient as they prevent drafts and air infiltration.


Types of Energy-Efficient Windows

There are different energy-efficient windows available on the market. First, there are double-pane windows. These have two panes of glass with a layer of air in between for added insulation. Double-pane windows are best for moderate climates. Triple-paned windows should be considered in places with severe climates. They have an additional air-filled space within them for enhanced insulation.


The other type of energy-efficient window is the low-E, which has some kind of coating that directs heat away from the house, making it even more energy-efficient. These windows are best suited for hot and sunny climates. This window type also helps reduce glare and protects your home’s furniture from fading due to UV rays.


The third type is gas-filled windows, which are filled with gases like argon or krypton between the panes for increased insulation. These windows are ideal for colder climates as they provide excellent thermal resistance. When purchasing gas-filled windows, ensure they have a low U-factor and high SHGC for maximum energy efficiency.


How to Choose the Right Energy-Efficient Windows for Your Home

You need to consider many factors before deciding on a suitable energy-efficient window for your house. You should first consider your climate. If you live in a colder climate, prioritize windows with a low U-factor and high SHGC to keep the heat inside your home. In warmer climates, look for windows with a higher SHGC to let in natural light while minimizing heat gain.


The orientation of your house is another thing you need to think about. If it requires maximization of sunshine, south-facing windows are usually the areas that absorb the most sunlight. Low SHGC windows would work best as they effectively prevent excess heat from entering your house. North-facing windows receive the least sunlight, so having a higher SHGC can help provide natural warmth during winter.


You should also seek a specialist to advise you on the best energy-efficient windows for your home. These individuals can assist you in determining the most appropriate window materials and components for your budget, local climate, and the direction your house is facing. For Park Ridge, IL residents, the professionals at Perfect Windows & Siding can help you make this decision easily.


Looking for the perfect windows, sidings, and doors for your home in Park Ridge, IL? At Perfect Windows & Siding, we offer awning windows, picture windows, double hung windows, casement windows, bay windows, and bow windows to keep your home comfortable year-round and help you save money. Reach out to us today and let our team of experts serve you.

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