Homeowners will typically not put much thought into their windows. As long as they are clean and letting in sufficient natural light into the home, they typically go unnoticed. However, your windows are a crucial component when it comes to the overall energy efficiency of your home. Your choice of windows will not only affect how comfortable your home is, but will also have an impact on your energy related bills. As such, it is prudent for homeowners to take the time to consider the various components of their windows so as to ensure they are opting for the most energy efficient option for their residence. Here are some of the considerations that you should have when contemplating energy efficient windows.
Consider the flow of heat through the windows
The first thing to keep in mind when contemplating energy efficient windows is how heat will flow through the windows. This heat may be from the outdoors during the summer into your household, or from the interior during the winter. There are two main ways that this heat flow is measured. The first is the U value of the windows. The rule of thumb is that the lower the U value measurement of the windows, the more enhanced the insulation properties are of that type of glass.
The second measurement to be on the lookout for would be the Solar Heat Gain Coefficient of the window. These SHGC refers to the amount of radiant heat that the windows will allow to penetrate them. If you live in an area predisposed to lower weather temperatures, then you would be best suited with a high SHGC rating for your windows. On the other hand, if your location primarily is exposed to high climatic temperatures, then you should consider windows with low SHGC ratings.
Consider the glazing of the window glass
Another factor to consider when contemplating energy efficient windows would be their glazing. Glazed windows will either have trapped air or gas, typically in the form of argon, trapped in between them. The trapped gas or air then functions to provide insulation to your home, as they will create a barrier to prevent heat from making its way either into or out of your residence.
The most common type of glazing is double-glazing, whereby two panes of glass are adhered together with the layer of glass in between them. However, you can also get triple glazed windows that will provide you with a higher degree of insulation. It should also be noted that glazed windows not only provide thermal insulation, but also provide sound insulation too.