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Your Ultimate Guide to Door and Window Styles – Part 3: Door and Window Styles and Energy Performance

Good looks and function are priorities when choosing new windows or patio doors, but do take into account their energy performance, as well. Did you know that your choice of window style alone can already make a big difference in your home’s comfort and energy efficiency? Check out these examples:

Part 3: Door and Window Styles and Energy Performance

  • Double-hung and casement windows can cool your home naturally. Both window styles allow access to superior natural ventilation. You can open both the top and bottom sashes of double-hung units at the same time. This way, warm and stale air can be expelled through the top sash, while cooler, fresher air enters through the bottom sash. Casement windows, meanwhile, can be opened wide or angled to direct cooling breezes into your rooms. This leads to a more comfortable indoor environment, especially in the summer. Because these windows help reduce the load on your air conditioning, you can save considerably on cooling bills.
  • Picture windows can prevent significant energy loss. This window style exists to frame the most amazing views, but that’s not the only thing picture units are good for. They are fixed, which means you can’t open them. While this may seem like a downside, it’s actually not–because a picture window is inoperable, it keeps a more durable, airtight seal. This prevents costly heating energy from escaping your home, ensuring consistent indoor temperature in colder months. If you want to lower your lighting bills, picture windows can help, as well. Their large glass area lets in plenty of natural light.

Which patio door style is energy-efficient? Hinged French doors might be better at energy-savings as they create an airtight seal when closed. When it comes to cooling your home, however, both options do well, as their wide openings let in plenty of breezes.

Pro-Tip. Your choice of window style can help contribute to a more comfortable, energy-efficient home; you can even further enhance performance with the right framing material and glass. For many homeowners, the best combination is a composite frame with low-emissivity (Low-E) glass. Composite windows offer both durability and energy performance: they combine the best features of other framing materials, including wood’s strength and insulating properties, with vinyl’s low maintenance requirements. Composite windows effectively resist corrosion, chipping and other types of damage, while keeping an airtight seal that prevents energy loss.

Low-E glass supports the insulating value of composite windows by helping reduce heat transfer. This results in a better thermal comfort, minus the high energy costs. There are even Low-E glass options that are treated with UV-blocking technology to help prevent sun damage to your interiors. Together, composite frames and Low-E glass allow for windows that offer exceptional energy performance.

Window and door replacement doesn’t have to be a taxing process. You can easily make the most of your home improvement project by choosing style that best fits your needs.

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May 25, 2016

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