Do you feel drafts inside your home? Is it hard to maintain a comfortable temperature in your home? Old, poorly installed, or poorly sealed windows may be the culprit. New glass-making and glass-coating technology has led to better insulation. These new windows can help save energy, but the biggest impact will be on comfort.
If your home is feeling a little drafty, they may just need some maintenance. Missing or inadequate air sealing around the window units can usually be solved with caulking, foam or weatherstripping.
If you’re in the market for new windows, make sure you are getting the most energy-efficient models. We’ve broken down the window components and jargon to make shopping easier:
- U-factor: measures how well a window prevents heat from inside a room from escaping. The lower the number, the more energy-efficient the window.
- Solar heat gain coefficient (SGHC): measures how much solar radiation a window allows through it. The lower the number, the less solar heat the window transmits into your building.
- Gas fills: energy-efficient windows often have argon or krypton gas to help lower the U-factor (make the window more efficient). In our region, we no longer recommend gas-filled units, as there are better performing methods to increase the long-term thermal performance of the window, such as enhanced glazings and films.
- Insulated windows: these windows allow air between the panes to lower the U-factor and the SHGC (making the window more efficient). Double-glazed, triple-glazed, or storm windows are all examples of insulated windows.