How often should residential windows be replaced?
If you are a homeowner with windows older than 25 years old, it is recommended that you have your windows replaced. It will not only beautify the interior and exterior of your home, but it will also lower you energy costs and increase the market value of your home.
Are replacement windows a good investment?
If you select high-quality, energy-efficient windows your replacement windows will pay for themslves. Savings will vary, but expertly engineered and well-built windows lower home energy consumption. With vinyl-framed windows, maintenance is also virtually eliminated. No need to scrape and paint windows.
These energy and maintenance savings will allow you to recoup your window investment over time.
Will new windows eliminate condensation?
Actually, no. Condensation is moisture vapor suspended in the air, and that’s something no one can guarantee to eliminate. However, high-quality vinyl windows incorporating warm-edge technology glazing systems will help to reduce condensation because they’re much less thermally conductive than other window types. They can help keep the temperature of the window warmer—minimizing the hot and cold differences that turn moisture into condensation. What makes a window or door energy efficient? Numerous factors, including how the frame and sashes are engineered and built, the type of glass used (single-, double- or triple-pane), the weather-stripping, the type of low-emissivity coating on the glass and the presence of argon or krypton gas.
What is ENERGY STAR®—and what does it have to do with windows and doors?
ENERGY STAR is a U.S. government program—administered by the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency with the cooperation of manufacturers—that’s designed to reduce the consumption of fossil fuels through the education of consumers. The program covers many different types of products. Windows and doors can only carry the ENERGY STAR label if they are tested by an independent laboratory through the NFRC program and meet specific, predetermined U-value ratings. By selecting ENERGY STAR products, you will reduce your energy costs and help make the environment cleaner.
What is the NFRC and what should I know about it?
NFRC stands for the National Fenestration Rating Council. It’s a program established by the U.S. Department of Energy to help consumers compare window products and options. Window manufacturers participating in the program are required to label every window to its specific thermal performance level. Customers are then ensured that the products they select meet the requirements for their application. Participation in the NFRC program is voluntary. Not all manufacturers participate because it requires outside third party inspection and extensive product testing.
What does Low E stand for?
Low E is a non-visible, microscopic layer of silver coating added to glass for greater energy efficiency and increased comfort. Low E stands for “low emissivity”, which is the action of reflecting light passing through glass. By reflecting part of the light spectrum (the part that transmits heat), we reduce a window’s U-Value and increase its R-Value.
What are U-values and R-values?
U-Values represent the amount of heat that escapes through a wall, window, roof or other surface. The lower the U-Value, the more energy efficient a material is. R-Values are the direct opposite. These measure an object’s resistance to heat flow. The higher a material’s R-Value, the lower its U-Value, and the less energy it will lose. An R-Value depends on the number of layers of glass in a window, what type of gas is between those layers, and whether one or more of those layers of glazing have been treated with a Low E coating.
Can windows keep out UV radiation that fades carpeting, furniture, draperies and upholstery?
Using a low-emissivity glass in your new windows or doors will filter more than 50 percent of the damaging UV light. The absolute most effective glass for this purpose, however, is laminated insulating glass. It features a polyvinyl butyric inner layer and a low-emissivity coating that filters more than 99 percent of UV radiation that fades interior furnishings.
Can windows and doors reduce outside noise?
All windows and doors reduce noise to some degree. The best solution, however, is to use a laminated, insulating glass system in windows and doors. It provides as much as a 100 percent improvement in sound deadening over other glass types.
What is a gas-filled window?
Modern window technology permits an inert gas, usually argon, to be sealed between the panes of glass in a window instead of air. The gas is a far better insulator that just air, thus further increasing the thermal value of a window.
What is insulated glass?
Technically, there are two or more panes of glass separated by insulation at the edges and air in the center to provide greater thermal efficiency to a window.
What does "cladding", mean?
Some windows are made of wood and then covered on the exterior and/or interior with another layer, such as aluminum or vinyl. This layer of extra covering (the cladding) gives added protection to the window and strengthens its resistance to outside weather or heavy inside usage.