Replacing your Windows for Energy Efficiency

  in  The Home
Energy efficient windows are an important consideration for both new and existing homes. Heat gain and heat loss through windows are responsible for 25%-30% of residential heating and cooling energy use.If your existing windows are in good condition, taking steps to reduce the energy loss through windows can make your home more comfortable and save you money on energy bills.Energy efficient glazing helps reduce your carbon footprint and your energy bills, whether with double or triple glazing, secondary glazing, or just heavier curtains.

Update Existing Windows to Improve Efficiency

If your windows are in good condition, taking steps to improve their efficiency may be the most cost-effective option to increase the comfort of your home and save money on energy costs. There are several things you can do to improve the efficiency of your existing windows:
  • Check existing windows for air leaks
  • Caulk and weather-strip
  • Add window treatments and coverings
  • Add storm windows or panels
  • Add solar control film
  • Add exterior shading, such as awnings, exterior blinds, or overhangs
With any efficiency improvements, take steps to ensure proper installation and check for air leaks again after making the improvement.

What is Energy Efficient Glazing?

Double glazed windows have two sheets of glass with a gap in between, usually about 16mm, to create an insulating barrier that keeps heat in. This is sometimes filled with gas. Triple glazed windows have three sheets of glass but aren't always better than double glazed windows.

What are the Benefits of Energy Efficient Windows?

There are many benefits of EEG, which are increasing all the time as technology and building techniques advance, and our eco-awareness increases.

Key benefits include:

  • Improved energy efficiency: Energy efficient glazing may form part of a wider range of energy saving measures. If your home also contains cavity wall insulation, loft insulation and an energy efficient heating system, these can all work together to reduce the amount of energy needed to heat your home. As a consequence you can enjoy lower energy bills and a reduced carbon footprint.
  • Reduced noise pollution: Sealed double and triple glazing can be effective at reducing medium to high frequency noise, creating a more comfortable, private and peaceful home environment.
  • Improved thermal insulation: Energy efficient glazing can help to keep your home warmer in winter and cooler in summer. The air or gas gap between the panes of glass in a sealed unit provides an extra layer of insulation. This increased thermal resistance reduces the amount of heat that can escape the home during the colder months. In summer the reverse occurs, and the windows help keep the heat outside, keeping the home cooler.
  • Reduced condensation: Energy efficient windows and doors help reduce the risk of condensation which occurs when a cold surface and moist air meet. The resulting moisture can potentially damage the window frame and if it is particularly bad, may even affect other areas of the room.
  • Safety and security: As there are two or more panes instead of one, energy efficient glazed windows offer a more secure barrier against unwanted entry than a single glazed window. The level of security can be enhanced further when laminated glass is used.