Friday, October 25, 2013

Energy Efficient Double Glazed Windows

Double Glazing Windows Can Save You Money!

When you fit Energy Efficient Windows to your home you can seriously save money on your energy bills. It is estimated by the Energy Saving Trust that households can save between £130-£150 when windows are fitted with energy efficient technology.

By reducing heat loss when you fit double glazing the environment also benefits, important for those concerned about the carbon footprint that our modern lives cause. Standard windows, which are usually single pane, have been shown in tests that they are very inefficient in keeping heat contained in the home.

Choosing the right window for your home is vital to making your home as energy efficient as possible. It is important to make an informed choice when buying energy efficient windows and you should always look for the Energy Saving Recommended logo. This means that the window and pane has been tested to ensure it is as energy efficient as possible.

Energy Saving Windows - Key Factors

When you decide to fit new windows to you home there are 3 components, which are vital to take in to consideration. The window frame material, the Energy Saving Window glass rating, and the way the window operates are key to ensuring your windows are as efficient as possible.

The Window Frame

The material you choose to fit your energy efficient double glazing with plays a key part in how energy efficient they are. Each material has pros and cons which may suit your household needs.

Metal or Aluminum Frames

Advantages of metal or aluminum frames are that they are very strong, not as heavy as other materials and do not require high maintenance. A disadvantage is that they are not so good at providing insulation.

Composite Frames

Composite window frames are made of composite wood products. These frames have better stability and thermal insulation properties than wood, and last longer as they are more durable.

Fiberglass Frames

Fiberglass window frames offer high insulation properties when the air cavities with the frame are filled with insulation. Fiberglass provides a strong structure for the window frame and result in high energy efficiency for windows.

Vinyl Frames

Vinyl windows are often made with polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Advantages of PVC is that in the frames do not require painting, have good energy efficiency with good insulation. Unfortunately in extreme weather conditions PVC can warp in heat and crack in the cold.

Similar to Fiberglass, vinyl frames can be filled with insulation to increase energy efficicency. These well insulating frames are often used with double glazing and high energy efficiency rating windows.
Wood Frames

Wood frames can perform well when it comes to energy efficient windows. A disadvantage is however that they also can be affected by changes in the weather. They also are heavy and take up more space reducing light in to the room, as well as needing the most work to maintain.

Window Glazing

The type glazing also makes a big difference to your energy efficient windows. By choosing the right glazing or glass for your home you drastically improve your energy efficiency windows. Gas fills involve filling the space between the double glazed windows with gas. This improves insulation and improves the thermal insulation provided by the energy efficient windows. Heat absorbing or Tinted energy efficient windows are used to soak up incoming heat from the sun through windows.

Double Glazed Windows use 2 or more panes of glass to insulate the window. The air that is trapped between the panes of glass resists heat flow and increases the energy efficiency of the window. Energy Efficient Windows can also be coated with a Low-emissivity or Low-E coating. These windows can be slightly more expensive but this is more than compensated by the 30%-50% reduction of energy loss this provides through the energy efficient windows.

Reflective coatings are often used in hot climates as they are effective in reflecting light, but do not have such effective thermal reflecting properties.

How does the Window Operating Type Affect Energy Efficiency?

The way your windows open can also affect the amount of heat loss throw the windows in your household. Air is leaked through certain types of windows more so than in others, reducing the energy efficiency. Awning which open at the top, and Casement which open at the side and outwards both have low air leakage levels due to the window closing and pressing against the frame. Hopper which opens inwardly also have low air leakage rates due to the window pressing against the frame also. These window operating types are effective in increasing the energy efficiency of your household.

Energy Saving Double Glazing Tips

- Energy efficient windows should always be installed professionally.
- Always get quotes from quality assured Energy Efficient Window companies vetted by the Energy Saving Trust.
- Ensure that Energy Saving Recommended windows are used, look out for the Energy Saving Recommended logo, these have been assessed by the British Fenestration Ratings Council.


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