Windows are a great way to let in natural light and see the outside world. Unfortunately, they are also a weak spot in your home's structure. Poorly crafted windows allow heat to escape or enter, forcing you to crank up the heat or air-conditioning to keep the temperature comfortable. Energy-efficient windows, however, are designed to keep hot air where you want it, so you use less energy. Check out these four ways energy-efficient windows help lower your energy bills.
They Reduce How Much Direct Heat Passes Through the Window
Conduction refers to heat passing through solid objects, and different materials have different levels of conductivity. Metal windows, for example, are more conductive, so on a hot day, if you touch the metal frame, it feels hot. Energy-efficient windows help lower your energy bills by reducing the amount of heat that actually passes through the window. This stops heat from entering your house on warm days and blocks it from escaping your home on colder days.
Energy-efficient windows are double-paned. The space between the panes is filled with special gasses, such as argon. This increases the window's insulating properties and blocks the flow of heat through the glass. Energy-efficient windows also use less-conductive materials for the window frame, such as vinyl to impede the flow of heat.
They Reduce Infrared Energy From Passing Through the Glass
Radiant transfer is another way heat escapes or enters through your home's windows. When something cold is next to something warm, the heat wants to transfer to the colder object. Without energy-efficient windows, this radiant transfer allows the glass on your windows to capture the heat in your home and push it outside.
Energy-efficient windows help stop the radiant transfer of heat with low-E coatings. These low-E coatings reflect some energy wavelengths. So instead of everything transferring through the glass, much of the heat bounces off the window, keeping it inside or outside.
They Stop Cold Windows From Cooling the Air
Windows tend to cool air, which becomes a problem when you are trying to heat your home. The warm air comes in contact with the cold window and cools. Cold air naturally drops, while hot air rises. Therefore, once the air has been cooled by the window, it drops and hot air moves in to replace it. This creates a draft near the window as air continuously cools and falls.
This transfer of heat is known as convection, but energy-efficient windows help stop these common drafts. They prevent the window from cooling the air using the same techniques used to stop air from passing through the glass: double-paned, gas-filled windows and thermally resistant frames. As a result, you don't have to keep turning up the heat to fight the draft.
They Prevent Air from Leaking Through Gaps and Cracks
Leaks are one of the biggest causes of increased energy bills. When there are leaks around the window, the cold or hot air can just slip right out or in. It's like trying to capture a bowl of water using a colander. Two of the major culprits for causing leaks are poor weather-stripping and low-quality closing devices.
Energy-efficient windows are designed better to reduce the amount of leaks. They are built with durable weather-stripping. The closing devices are also more durable to create a tight seal when the window is closed. While there are many well-crafted double-hung energy-efficient windows, hinged windows are the best at blocking leaks.
Energy-efficient windows are a great way to improve your home, and they help reduce your monthly energy bills by stopping the transfer of heat. However, to really benefit from energy-efficient windows, you have to replace all your windows, so it is a big investment. If you are ready to swap out your old windows with new energy-efficient ones, contact a contractor or companies like Rusco Industries Calgary Ltd in your area today.