Comparing Energy Efficient Windows

Comparing Energy Efficiency of Home Windows – Prince William County / Woodbridge, VA

As a modern homeowner who wants to reduce his carbon footprint and contribute to the preservation of Mother Nature, you may be looking to install energy-efficient windows in your home. With the federal stimulus initiatives giving you another solid reason to adopt a green way of life, you may want to know what “energy- efficiency” specifically refers to and how you can compare the energy efficiency of windows. Notably, this makes sense when we consider the fact that the latest energy-efficiency standards exceed the previously established Energy Star ratings.

Energy Efficiency Standard Before The Introduction Of The Federal Stimulus Initiatives

The Energy Star standard required windows to have a .35 “E rating. An E rating denotes a material’s ability to emit infrared energy. Glass with low E rating can reflect wide-band heat waves back to the source and allow the narrow-band light waves to pass through them. Additionally, the earlier Energy Star regulations required windows to have a lower solar-heat coefficient. This provides a measure of the amount of heat that can be kept out through the incorporation of silver or other metal particles in the glass composite.

Energy Efficiency Standard After The Introduction Of The Federal Stimulus Initiatives

A window is said to be more energy efficient if its glass has a lower solar-heat coefficient. After the introduction of the federal stimulus initiatives, the standard has been revised to .30 or below for emissivity as well as heat-gain coefficient. People residing in southern climates are more likely to benefit from the newly established energy efficiency rating standard.

Understanding The Energy Efficiency Rating Of Home Windows

Understanding the energy rating of your windows may prove to be a technical task. However, the easiest way to check the energy rating of your windows is to check the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) label on the products. You should also consider the “U-factor” which provides a measure of the amount of heat that escapes through the glass. Besides, you should also consider air leakage and condensation rating in order to gain a better understanding of the energy rating of your windows. Notably, a lower number in all these considerations denotes higher energy efficiency.

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Evaluating The Quality Of Your Replacement Window Glass

The materials that are used to encase window glass should not only be fixed tightly to prevent heat and air leakage, but they should also be of premium quality. Vinyl window casings appear in a wide range of quality and there are certain varieties that exhibit self-destructive properties. Certain varieties of vinyl casings are made out of a combination of “virgin” vinyl and recycled materials. Although the use of recycled materials appears to be a good idea, however, the combination may not remain stable as vinyl retains its molecular memory and demonstrates a tendency to go back to its original shape. So you should ideally look for casings that are created with virgin vinyl that is noted for its durability and resistance to moisture, cold, and heat.

The Need To Complement Your Energy-Efficient Windows With A Proper Ventilation System

However energy-efficient your windows may be, you may not able to make the most out of them if you have a defective ventilation system. Energy efficient windows are designed to prevent air leakage and moisture leakage and so your home’s ventilation system should support the elimination of moisture from your home. Accumulation of moisture may lead to the formation of mold and mildew and this is the last thing that you will want to witness after investing in energy-efficient replacement windows. Soffit and ridge vents can efficiently remove moisture out of your home and so you should make sure that they are in the functional state.

Tax Credit For Energy Star Qualified Windows

If you have installed replacement windows between January 1, 2012 and December 31, 2016, you are eligible to receive a tax credit equal to 10 percent of the product cost, up to $200 for Energy Star qualified windows.

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