According to the U.S. Department of Energy, approximately 30 percent of the average homeowner’s energy dollars are lost via their doors and windows. If that isn’t reason enough to look at replacing your existing windows with more energy-efficient models, we don’t know what is!
When it comes to great replacement windows for your home, there are a variety of choices. Before we get into the most energy-efficient windows, let’s talk a little about what aspects to consider when you’re looking to replace your windows.
What to Consider When Shopping for Energy-Efficient Windows
The most energy-efficient windows are those with insulating glass that helps keep the summer heat and the winter cold outside where it belongs. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that the most energy-efficient windows can help you save approximately 15 percent on your heating and air conditioning bills! The rate of heat loss is measured by the window’s U-factor (the lower the number, the more efficient the window).
Insulating glass also helps reduce heat generated by the sun on eastern and western-facing windows. Look for a window’s solar heat gain co-efficient to determine how well a window deflects solar heat (again, the lower the number, the more efficient the window). And keep in mind a window company can help with this!
Top Choices for the Most Energy-Efficient Windows
Keep an eye out for windows that combine style with high-efficiency—and be sure to ask your local window company about them (and insulating glass). In general, the most energy-efficient window styles are:
- Picture windows. Picture windows, or fixed-pane windows, are among the most energy-efficient windows available. They don’t open at all and, therefore, air can’t leak in and out.
- Casement and awning windows. Due to the tight seal created between the sash and the frame, casement windows tend to be extremely energy-efficient. Awning windows, which are identical to casement windows except they open horizontally instead of vertically, are also energy-efficient.
- Bay and bow windows. These types of windows, which consist of a large picture window and two smaller windows (usually double hung or casement), are some of the most energy-efficient available.
Also, many top manufacturers—such as Sunrise, Andersen, Simonton, ProVia, etc.—offer energy-efficient products that can help you save on your energy bills. Most energy-efficient windows also qualify homeowners for an energy tax credit on their 2013 federal tax return. A window company can help you pick out windows that qualify for this credit.
Energy-Efficient Windows in MD, DC & VA
You don’t have to wait until spring to swap out your old, inefficient windows for more energy-efficient models. In fact, there are often incentives and sales for buying during the off-season. However, no matter what time of year you decide to make the switch, you’ll soon see the difference in your utility bills.
Contact Shanco Companies if you need a window company in the Maryland, DC, and Northern Virginia area!