All homes lose heat in a number of ways. This could be through the floor, walls, loft or even windows. Insulation comes in a range of shapes and sizes from loft lagging to wall cavity fillings, but for the windows you’ll need to look at double, triple or secondary glazing (for homes in conservation areas or listed buildings).
The benefits of energy efficient windows:
There are a number of benefits you’ll see by installing new windows throughout your property. These include:
- Reduced heating bills: Inefficient windows will lose heat all year round, whilst replacing your panes with B-rated double glazing can save £170 each year
- Slash carbon emissions: Carbon is heavily responsible for global warming problems and installing new windows can reduce your home’s emissions by 680kg annually
- A warmer home: With new windows you can eliminate draughts and cold spots in your home, ensuring it’s both warmer and more comfortable throughout the year
- Added peace and quiet: With new windows such as double glazing you can improve the energy efficiency of your home and cut the amount of noise pollution that enters the property
- Less condensation: Condensation is formed by moisture settling on a cold surface, but with double glazing your home’s interior will be warmer throughout the year so the moisture doesn’t settle.
Of course, all the costs and savings for new energy efficient windows will differ depending on your home, the windows and the installer. No matter the company or installation you choose though, it should last for over 20 years.
How does double glazing work?
Double glazing is manufactured from two panes of energy efficient glass separated by a gas spacer, usually Argon.
Argon is a motionless gas, whereby heat and sound can’t pass through it. So when the double glazing unit is in place it acts as superb insulation. When picking new windows though, always make sure they carry the BFRC rating and Energy Saving Trust logo.
Energy efficiency windows will come with a range of materials and styles and you choose depending on:
- How heat is retained in the home
- The amount of sunlight passing through
- How much air passes around the window
What you should look for with double glazing
When looking to have the windows in your home replaced, there are three main areas you should be very specific on:
- The glass: Energy efficient glass is best for new windows and having low emissivity (low-E) panes is best for your annual savings. Low-E glass tends to have a coat of metal oxide on one side, letting light and heat in, but limiting the amount of heat that can escape.
- The spacer: With the gas spacer it’s imperative to choose a highly efficient option. Double glazing installers tend to use Argon, xenon or Krypton for their energy efficient properties.
- The pane spacers: The pane spacers are fitted around the edges to keep the glass apart. If you want to make the most from energy efficiency then look for spacers with little or no metal. These are often referred to as ‘warm edge’ spacers.
Possible frame materials
With your new windows you’ll often face a choice with the frame material. For every frame there are different windows available with varying ratings.
- uPVC: uPVC is the cheapest frame material, being highly durable and weather resistant. It’s available in a wide range of colours
- Wood: Wooden frames are great from an environmental prospective whilst looking fantastic with traditional homes. If you live in a conservation area, wood may be your best option too
- Aluminium: Aluminium is the strongest and most durable option available, not rusting, warping, bowing or cracking. However, it is the most expensive choice available as a result.
Facts & Figures You’ll Love To Share
- Improving your home efficiency with insulation will help you to save hundreds of pounds every year on heating bills.
- As heat naturally rises, loft lagging acts as a superb insulator to retain warmth in the home.
- 20% of heat can be lost through inefficient walls, so consider wall cavity and solid wall insulation.
- You could be wasting £200 a year on heat with inefficient windows. Consider replacement double glazing.
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