If your home has very old and/or inefficient windows, it's likely more cost-effective to replace them than try to improve their energy efficiency. New enery-efficient windows eventually pay for themselves through lower heating and cooling costs.
It's important to understand the energy performance ratings of windows to choose the best type for your climate and home's design. Windows use solar energy at the site to provide heating, cooling, and lighting for a house. Passive solar design strategies vary by building location and regional climate.
In cooling climates, effective strategies include use of north-facing windows and generously-shaded south-facing windows. Windows with low SHGC (solar heat gain coefficient) are more effective at reducing cooling loads. Low-e coatings control heat transfer through windows with insulated glazing. If you're constructing a new home or doing some remodeling, you should take advantage of the opportunity to incorporate window design and selection as an integral part of your whole house design in order to build an energy-efficient home.
A window's enery efficiency is dependent upon all of its components, as well as proper installation. The operating type (i.e. awning, casement, single and double hung, fixed, single and double sliding, etc) plays an important role, as some types have lower air leakage rates.
***Even the most energy-efficient window must be properly installed to ensure its efficiency. Therefore, it is advised that you have a professional install your windows. They should be installed according to the manufacturer's recommendation and be properly air-sealed, which includes caulking the frame and weatherstripping the operable components.
GODSOE BUILDERS would be happy to talk with you about options and recommendations, and assist in proper installation. Call today 207-310-8238