What Kind of Windows Are Most Energy Efficient?
If you’re planning to replace the windows at your home, you likely have a lot of questions. Chief among them, perhaps, is what kind of windows are most energy efficient? After all, one of the main reasons why homeowners choose to replace their windows is to improve their home’s energy efficiency. And even if your primary motivation for replacing your windows is to improve your home’s appearance rather than its thermal performance, you’ll still want to make sure the new windows you’re having installed provide you with the best possible energy efficiency. When determining the energy efficiency of a window, there are a few different factors to take into consideration, such as the window’s style, the frame material, and the overall quality of the window itself. Below, we’ll look at each of these aspects in turn.
When it comes to window style, fixed windows or picture windows are the most energy efficient because the sashes are non-operable and therefore are fully sealed to the window frame. This lack of seams and moving parts means that virtually no air can penetrate the windows, which provides impeccable energy efficiency, but does so at the cost of being able to open and close your windows. In terms of operable windows, hinged-sash windows such as casement and awning windows are typically the most energy efficient as they create a firm weathertight seal when closed.
There are many different window frame materials on the market, ranging from vinyl to wood to metal to fiberglass, and more. Of all of these, vinyl tends to be the most energy efficient material as it has better natural insulating properties than fiberglass and metal and won’t warp or deteriorate as wood windows often do over time. Vinyl also has a high R-value, which means it effectively reduces heat transfer—keeping warm air inside your home in the winter and preventing hot outside air from seeping inside your home during the summer months.
While name-brands aren’t everything, it’s important to choose replacement windows that you know are well made. While vinyl may have natural insulating properties, a poorly made vinyl window won’t provide the same energy efficiency as a higher quality wooden or metal window. Likewise, a window that looks great and provides exceptional energy efficiency at first, but then loses its shape after just one four-season cycle is not much of an investment.
At American Home Design, we’re proud to install Preservation replacement windows as they provide a great overall value. These windows feature durable vinyl frames and boast the latest and greatest in energy-saving technology, such as polyurethane insulation, low-E glass, and inert gas fills. They also come in a variety of styles, so you can choose windows that look and function just how you want them to while also providing a high level of energy efficiency.
To learn more about what makes our Preservation windows among the most energy efficient replacement windows on the market, contact American Home Design today.