Historically, windows have been a source of heat loss in winter and unwanted heat in summer. However, modern window designs have new insulating capabilities that prevent heat loss and heat gain, keeping your home at it’s desired temperature. What style of window is most energy efficient? A double-pane window made of low-E glass can provide the best insulation. Learn how to choose the best windows for insulation to prevent unwanted heat and cold.
The Best Windows for Insulation: Points to Consider
Contemporary window designs have given consumers several points to consider when choosing the best windows for insulation. We’ll discuss how the right glass, window frames, and efficiency and insulation ratings can inform the best choice for your home. But, first, here’s why well-insulated windows are the key to comfort.
Why Windows Are Important for Insulation
Windows and doors are the biggest sources of heat loss and heat gain in your home. While the right type of glass can keep heat in or out, window framing is also important. Gaps in framing can allow air to enter or escape, creating unintentional heating or cooling.
Choosing the best windows for insulation keeps your home at a comfortable temperature and prevents unwanted heat loss and gain. Investing in the right windows can also save long term money and resources when heating and cooling your home.
Factors to Consider When Choosing Windows
Though there are many considerations when choosing the best windows for insulation, there are certain factors that can best inform your decision.
These are key points to consider when selecting insulating windows:
- Window Glass: While there are many types of energy efficient windows, low-E glass that reduces the transfer of ultraviolet light is best for insulation. When considering single vs dual pane windows, always opt for dual pane options. This insulating glass is made up of many pieces and spacers that limit the transfer of heat and cold.
- Window Frames: Make sure you consider your area’s weather and climate when contemplating types of window frames. While wood frames offer the best insulating capabilities, they also require consistent maintenance and don’t provide the storm-proofing quality of aluminum framing.
- Window Orientation: Does a room in your home get direct sun all day? If so, the windows in this space should have the best insulating properties to keep out heat and UV rays. There are also insulating window treatments to consider for these spaces that also prevent heat gain and loss.
- Energy Star Label: Windows with an Energy Star label are certified to a higher level of efficiency by the federal Environmental Protection Agency. Always look for windows with an Energy Star label to ensure better insulating capabilities.
Window R-Value vs. U-Value
R and U-value ratings are helpful in determining how insulating and efficient windows can be. An R-value measures how insulating a material is, while U-values measure its energy efficiency, or how much heat is lost or gained.
The highest R-value windows mean they have a higher degree of insulating capabilities. Conversely, the best windows also have a low U-value, signifying that only a small amount of heat is lost or gained.
Best Insulated Windows
How can you determine the windows that keep heat and cold out most effectively? There are several factors that dictate how well a window can insulate your home.
Here’s what to keep in mind when choosing the best windows for insulation:
- Low-E glass reduces the transfer of ultraviolet light.
- A high R-value means greater insulating capabilities, while a low U-value signifies less heat loss and gain.
- Double pane windows provide significantly more insulating capabilities than single-pane windows.
- Triple pane windows are now available with even greater insulating abilities, though this comes at a higher cost.
Need more window insulation tips? The experts at Glass West can answer any question!