Upgrading your windows is a great way to enhance your home’s beauty, but it’s also an investment in your home. They increase energy efficiency, add character, and increase equity. Here are some new features to look for when replacing the windows in your home.
Energy Star Rated Glass
Energy Star rated windows can lower your energy bill by up to 15% each year. There are two values when rating windows: R-value and U-factor. The R-value indicates energy-efficient materials in your new windows. The higher the R-value, the better the rating. The U-factor numbers will look the opposite. U-factor indicates the rate that your door or window conducts non-solar energy. The lower the number, the better the efficiency. Look for ratings that work with the climate in your local area.
Low-E windows, or low emissivity, minimize the amount of UV light entering your home. The transparent coating reflects heat and UV rays without interfering with your vision. The layer of protective coating is thinner than a human hair and helps regulate your home’s temperature.
New window frames come in wood, fiberglass, aluminum and vinyl. Wood requires a bit more maintenance but offers character to a home’s look. Aluminum or vinyl windows are the most popular in new construction homes due to their lower cost and durability. Fiberglass windows are stronger than vinyl but are also more expensive. Choose the type of frame based on your budget, and the style of your home.
Ease of Cleaning
Newer window frames are easier to clean. Most of them now have a feature where you can swing them open for full cleaning access with the push of a button. Vinyl windows just need a wipe down with a clean cloth. Wood frames sometimes need a paint touch up, but you’ll need to be careful not to seal them shut with paint.
Newer window frames offer added security features. Single pane glass panels are easy to smash, and older frames only offer a single locking mechanism. Here’s a look at some added security features offered with newer frames:
● Multi-point locks are a great feature to consider. It means three different locks are controlling the same window frame for added security. Multi-point locks are typically found on casement and awning windows.
● SPP glass is 12 times stronger than normal glass, reducing noise from outside but also keeping out unwanted visitors. It is very difficult to break, increasing security.
● Night locks allow homeowners to open windows a few inches for ventilation but prevent them from opening any further. Keep your windows open with safety in mind.
Choosing the right combination of features for your home ensures you get the most out of your new windows. Price is not the only thing to think about when making this important decision. Consider a variety of factors and get the best match for your home.