When it comes to getting the right energy efficient windows, there are multiple choices available for you to select from. Working with a checklist will help you streamline your options and find the best value for your budget when buying energy efficient windows. Ready to shop? Here are the top things to look for in energy efficient windows for your home window replacement project.
1. Insulation quality or U-Factor
Arguably the most important feature or rating you should pay attention to for energy efficient windows and doors, is the extent at which it conducts heat flow both inward and outward. This heat flow factor is also known as the U-Factor or U-Value. The U-factor considers the frame and window glass material in obtaining the actual efficiency level of the window. When buying energy efficient windows, you want to look for windows that have a low U-Factor, as the lower the factor the more energy efficient the window or door is.
2. VT Value
Another measurement for energy efficient windows is the Visible Transmittance value that they possess. Visible Transmittance refers to the optical property of the windows, which simply means how much natural light actually passes through the window. The VT value of an energy efficient window should be at least 1, because the higher the transmittance, the better lighting the window provides for your space.
3. Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) measurement
In relation to the VT, Solar Heat Gain Coefficient measurement of an energy efficient window is what determines the amount of solar energy that translates into heat through the window. For a window to be very energy efficient, it has to be able to absorb enough heat as required. The relationship between the SGHC and the VT value is the light-to-solar gain. It refers to the window’s ability to transmit light and reduce heat.
4. Water and air leakage risks
When a window is ill-fitted and open spaces around the frame are closed off with sealants such as caulking, over time you risk leakage that can lead to serious problems like condensation, water damage, and can cause cold and warm spots by the window. When it comes to energy efficient windows, ensuring the window fits perfectly in the opening is extremely important.
No matter the quality of your replacement windows, if they are not installed correctly, they will not function as expected. Partnering with an experienced windows and door contractor for your window replacement is extremely important to the quality of product you receive. An experienced contractor will understand all the nuances of installing a window and will ensure you are able to benefit from all of your windows energy efficient qualities, as they will be installed correctly.
Energy efficient windows add value to your home, reduce your carbon footprint, and help you save on energy costs. In order to get the most energy efficient windows for your home, follow the above checklist and make the best choices for your situation.