So, you bought a home that could use some work, or maybe you even bought a new house only to find out that it doesn’t have energy-efficient windows and it’s now time for window replacement. With energy saving becoming such a crucial part of home ownership, it’s no wonder why it should become standard where you live. Although you may not recoup all your money within the first few months, replacement windows and doors are the only home improvements that will make the inside and outside of your home look nicer all while reducing your heating and cooling cost. Energy-efficient windows can nearly pay for themselves in the long run, so whether you’re remodeling an older home or just updating your new one, maximize your savings with these energy-saving window tips.
Energy Star Ratings
From appliances to the insulation in your walls, energy efficiency is an essential factor when remodeling any part of your home. Compared to most remodeling jobs, replacing windows can be less expensive while still giving you a good return on investment. And, as with any investment, you’ll notice the difference over the next few years. Choosing Energy Star-rated windows is an excellent start as you will use less energy to heat and cool your home than the non-efficient counterpart, but Energy Star only measures thermal performance, not window quality, so what else should you look out for when you’re remodeling your home?
Weatherization helps to prepare your home for the seasonal changes typical to your area, but energy efficiency goes a step beyond that so you get optimal performance from your home regardless of the season. Whether it’s replacing old appliances, insulating the attic, or replacing leaky doors and windows, if you’re thinking about a larger remodeling project, it’s important to remember that now is the time to invest in energy-saving improvements. We recommend starting with your windows. Even though the saying is true that money doesn’t grow on trees, you’re literally throwing money out your windows if they have leaks, drafts, or poor energy ratings.
If you live in a climate with both cold and hot seasons, a window with low U-factors (measures thermal resistance) and low SHGCs (measures thermal reflection) work together to help maximize energy savings while making your home more comfortable. Low U-factors means that the window does a better job of resisting the transfer of thermal energy (like an R-Value), making your home more comfortable in the colder months. During the summer, strong direct sunlight can cause overheating, and that heat comes through the glass and raises the temperature of your home, forcing your AC unit to work harder to cool your home. Windows with a low SHGC will reduce the incoming heat by reflecting the sun’s radiant heat energy, helping you save on cooling costs.
Ensure Proper Installation
No one likes feeling a draft after remodeling an older home or having just moved into a new one. How exactly do drafts happen? Well, if you have cold glass, the drafts next to the window are further cooled and drop directly to the floor. If this happens with all of your windows, it’s easy to see how you can be losing money quickly each month.
What if you already have energy-efficient windows, but you still notice leaks and cold spots in your home? Proper insulation keeps your windows from leaking air or water when it rains. It’s one of the most important steps to ensure optimal performance. It won’t matter how expensive or efficient your windows are if they aren’t installed properly. Although expanding foams or sealants will make a window fit well, they aren’t waterproof, and that can lead to even more expensive repair costs down the line. From pre-installation waterproofing to flashing and proper caulking, an eye to detail is what we do.
Whether you’re taking on a huge remodel for your home, or maybe you just want to update your home to increase your energy savings, replacing your windows is a great way to go. It costs less than most remodels, and it’ll give you a good return on your investment. Even if you don’t see yourself living where you’re at for long, you could still see the price of your home increase at resale and put more money back in your pocket just by investing in energy-efficient windows.