Did you know windows and doors are two of the most important factors when it comes to the energy efficiency of your home? According to experts, up to 49 per cent of heat loss occurs through windows and doors, while buildings gain 89 per cent of their heat through inefficient windows.
When talking about energy-efficient windows, we’re referring to a product’s ability to keep hot or cold air inside the home, while reducing the amount of energy that can escape. The more energy efficient your windows the better they’ll be at ‘trapping’ hot or cold air inside the home, which reduces need for artificial heating and cooling sources.
There are many degrees of energy efficiency available in windows, and their performance can be impacted by many factors, including climate, building materials and the surrounding environment. In this blog, we’re going to explore the different types of energy-efficient windows and how you can make existing windows more energy efficient.
Rating the energy efficiency of your windows
In Australia, the energy efficiency of windows is measured by ‘U-value’, which calculates the amount of heat travelling through windows. The higher your U-value, the less energy efficient your windows will be.
The energy efficiency of your windows can also be established using the Window Energy Rating Scheme (WERS), which rates and labels windows by their annual energy efficiency in any climate. Heating and cooling performance via WERS is determined through a 0-10-star rating. You can also look out for the WERS compliance certificate on your windows of choice.
Types of energy efficient windows
If you’re looking to replace your windows or build a new home, there are many energy-efficient options available to Australian homeowners. The most common is double-glazed windows, which feature insulating barriers that slow down the escape of heat and cold in your home.
Low emissivity (low-e) glass is another option – this design features a coating which limits the amount of heat that can be transferred through the glass. Another, more recent, innovation is Argon gas-filled windows. In this type of window, Argon is filtered into gaps in order to keep insulation at a maximum and condensation at a minimum.
Other elements that can keep your windows energy efficient are frames such as aluminium thermal break and timber. You should also be sure to choose high-quality windows seals, especially compression seals, to ensure heat and cool can’t escape through any cracks.
Boosting the energy efficiency of your existing windows
If you’re unable to change your existing windows at this point in time, there are many low-cost solutions for increasing the energy efficiency of your windows. Polymer film can help reduce solar heat entering the home, while blackout curtains and blinds or weighty fabrics can help moderate the interior temperature of your home.
If you’re interested in learning more about using energy-efficient windows in your home, get in touch with the expert team at Brownhill Homes today!