Can new windows save money on my energy bills?
Have you ever taken a look at your energy bill and wished you could lower your monthly payments? Sure, we’ve all been there. The real question is, what’s the secret to keeping money in your pocket without dramatically altering your lifestyle?
In this article we’ll show you how replacement windows can actually increase the comfort of your home and the money in your pocket.
Most Home Windows Are Inefficient (and losing you money)
No one likes find out that they have been tricked, duped, or taken advantage of, but sadly that’s the case with the vast majority of windows in new homes. The fact is most home builders do whatever they can to keep their costs low and their profits high. One of the easiest places to save money is by installing cheap, low-quality windows.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, energy loss attributed to windows accounts for nearly 25% of the annual heating and cooling costs of the average American home. If your home is less than 30 years old, chances are the company that built your home cut costs by using inferior windows. If your home is more than 30 years old, your windows probably don’t have any of the energy-saving benefits of modern window technology.
The best way to know if you have inefficient windows is to ask yourself the following questions. Do your windows get hot in the summer and cold in the winter? Are your windows drafty? Have your windows become foggy or cloudy? Are your windows hard to open and close? Is your HV/AC system running most of the day just to keep your house at a comfortable temperature? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are almost certainly losing money due to inefficient windows.
New Windows Will Help You Save Money
It’s important to know that, due to Federal law, no company can make specific claims about how much money you will save with their specific products, and you should be skeptical about anyone who violates this law.
However, a report conducted by Energy Star found that the average savings earned by switching from single-pane windows to Energy Star rated double-pane windows is about 20% in the Mid-Atlantic area; 8% if you are switching from non-Energy Star rated double-pane windows.
Replacement windows are usually treated with a low-e coating, and filled with gas – typically Argon or Krypton. Both systems are designed to reduce UV rays that emanate heat, fade furniture, and fill your home with unwanted radiation.
Choosing the right materials is also important to help you save money on your replacement windows. Aluminum conducts heat and has an 80% higher chance of rotting your window jam. Wood can be attractive, but it needs almost constant maintenance and is often plagued with rot, mildew, shrinkage, swelling, bugs, and other problems.
The best material by far for replacement windows is vinyl. It does not suffer any of the issues inherent with aluminum or wood, and if you get replacement windows made with close to 100% virgin vinyl they will not fade, get chalky, or get brittle over time.
How the Right Replacement Windows Can Save You Even More
Did you know that at nearly 40% of the windows replaced by Long® Windows have already been replaced once before? That’s because there are a lot of low-price, low-quality replacement windows on the market that are not built to last. Here are a few extra features you should look for if you want to really save money on your energy bills and reduce your long-term costs.
Look for windows designed for maximum UV reduction. Most replacement windows feature 4 coats of low-e and are filled with Argon gas. This creates a U-value (measure of heat loss – the lower the better) of 0.26. At Long® Windows our windows feature 5 coats of low-e and are filled with a more energy-efficient Krypton gas. Our windows also feature our exclusive Heat Mirror® technology that blocks 99.7% of harmful UV light keeping the heat outside in the summer and inside in the winter. This creates a U-value of 0.17. See our full energy-efficiency specifications here.
Look for windows with insulated framework and fusion welds. Most replacement windows have hollow frames that have been glued or screwed together. These frames let in outside air, become drafty over time, and do very little to help maintain the temperature inside your home. At Long® Windows our window frames and sashes are fusion welded and fully insulated with polyurethane, closed-cell foam. This insulation will not absorb water, will not rot, and will not mold. As a result, our insulated frames are almost as energy-efficient as the walls in your home.
Look for windows that use close to 100% virgin vinyl. Most replacement windows use reground plastic and only a small amount of actual vinyl. Per government standards, a replacement window only needs to contain 15% vinyl to be called a vinyl window. These windows are poor insulators because reground plastic is much better at storing heat and cold than vinyl. At Long® Windows our window frames and sashes contain 97% pure virgin vinyl and 3% Titanium Dioxide (for rigidity, strength, and UV reduction which eliminates fading).
Look for windows with a no-nonsense, long-term warranty. Most replacement windows have a short-term warranty of less than 10 years. These warranties are often limited, pro-rated over time, and filled with fine print designed to make it almost impossible for companies to honor them. At Long® Windows our windows are guaranteed for the life of your home. Our lifetime warranty is transferable, non-pro-rated, and features absolutely zero fine print. If you ever need a service for your windows just call us and we will repair or replace them at no cost to you.
There are many things you can do to increase the energy efficiency of your home and save money. One of the easiest and most beneficial changes you can make is replacing your old, low-efficiency starter windows. If you select replacement windows that have been designed with energy efficiency in mind you can, and will, save money on your energy bills.
When you’re ready to start saving money, we’d love to help you with your home improvement project. Fill out our “Get a Price” form to start your free estimate today. Use promo code “BLOG” to take advantage of our special offers!!
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