Window and door installation is a very worthwhile home renovation that may offer a greater ROI than you ever imagined. Depending on the condition and age of your existing windows and doors, they could be a significant source of energy loss in your home. Going out and buying replacement windows and doors is not something as self explanatory as say, picking out a paint color. Therefore, here is a guide to some common window and door questions:
How Often Should Windows Be Replaced?
As a general rule, windows that are over 25 years old are typically ready for a replacement. The technologies that go into window manufacturing have changed so much in that time that you’re likely losing heat and air with products of that age.
What Are Signs That a Window or Door Should Be Replaced?
If you can feel a draft coming through the glass of the window, it is losing energy and costing you money. Damage is also a sign that windows or doors should be replaced. Windows that have sealed shut and doors that are damaged are a safety and security risk. Windows that are foggy are also damaged and need to be replaced as the insulating gas between the panes has leaked.
What Makes Various Windows Different?
Materials vary from window to window but the biggest difference is in the glass type. For example, windows can be either double or triple paned which will boost their R-value and thermal resistance. Some windows have insulating gas between the panes for even more heat retention.
What Do the Different Window and Door Materials Do?
Windows are available in either aluminum, wood, or vinyl most frequently. Vinyl is the most cost efficient but can expand and contract a lot in our cold Minnesota temperatures affecting the seal. Wood has natural insulating properties and offers improved aesthetics but needs to be painted and sealed to prevent sun damage and weather rot. Aluminum windows are durable and require no maintenance but aren’t as great at holding in heat. For doors, steel is the most recommended material for installation – mainly for the combination of security and sharp looks.
Is the Frame or the Glass More Important to Window Energy Efficiency?
A window is 70% to 80% glass so it makes sense that the panes are what contributes the most to energy efficiency.
Should I Have Glazing On My Windows?
Glazing and the type of glass on a window are essentially the same thing. Insulated means windows with two or three panes of glass. A low-emissivity coating can be applied to help control heat transfer. There are also reflective coatings that help block the sun’s UV rays in the summer. Opting for any of these features and more will improve your energy efficiency – but will also increase the cost of your installation.
What are the Different Window Types
Lastly, when many people are shopping for replacement windows, they opt to stick with the same type of unit that is currently installed. That doesn’t mean you can’t go for a new style however ranging from casement (crank open), sliding, double hung, awning, fixed, or custom. Feel free to contact us for more information about the different window types available to you. 612-333-SNAP or [email protected]