What you need to know about buying energy efficient windows
More and more, customers aren’t just choosing to have the most energy efficient windows possible in their home, they expect nothing less than the highest standards. This makes a lot of sense. Not only are energy efficient window great for the environment, they’re also great for your budget. By more strictly controlling the heat exchange between the inside and outside of your home at its most vulnerable points, you ensure that your heater doesn’t have to work hard in the winter and that you won’t have to use your air conditioner as much in the summer.
But how do you know which windows are energy efficient and which aren’t? Luckily, the Canadian government supports the ENERGY STAR program that gives consumers information about how energy efficient products are. Energy efficient windows should come with an ENERGY STAR sticker that will give you a particular window’s certified performance rating, the climate zone in which it’s efficient, a description of the product, and other certification information. At Canadian Comfort Windows & Doors, we like our customers to be as informed as possible about energy efficiency so they can choose the windows that are right for them. Here are just a few of the important terms you’ll find on an energy efficiency sticker:
• A U-factor is a coefficient of measurement for the transfer of heat through a material. In other words, windows with lower U-factors will not transfer heat well and will therefore keep heat inside your home in the winter and outside in the summer.
• Solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) measures the fraction of solar radiation that can move through a window. A SHGC will always be a number between zero and one. Lower numbers will transfer radiation poorly—which means they’re more energy efficient for your home.
• Climate zone refers to areas that have a more or less similar weather pattern and that experience roughly the same temperature changes throughout the year. Many ENERGY STAR stickers come with little maps that show you the regions of Canada in which particular windows are certified as energy efficient.
Energy efficiency is an important issue and you should always consult an expert about which choice is right for you. If you’re in need of advice about your windows or window installation, contact us at Canadian Comfort Windows & Doors today to find out how we can help you make your home more energy efficient.