Have you ever wondered how energy efficient your windows or skylights really are for your home? Skylights and large, spacious windows are aesthetically pleasing and extremely beautiful in a home. They can create an incredibly beautiful space by allowing light to flow into the room and flood the floors, walls, and furniture. But are they really energy efficient and are your heating and air conditioning dollars flying out of the top of your house?
Don’t dismay! There are definitely energy efficient windows and skylights that are suited perfectly for your home. It just takes a little investigation and homework to ensure that you are choosing the best skylights that offer energy efficiency, quality, and structural integrity.
Traditional skylights typically use the same technology as traditional windows. This is very important since some of these technologies include coatings for ultraviolet rays, double or triple panes, gas or air fillers, and other features. Skylights are also tremendously vulnerable spaces on the top of your roof that allow direct sun in summer to infiltrate your house. In the winter, they are more exposed to the varying temperatures and environmental elements such as ice, snow, and cold air.
Purchasing windows or skylights that include many of the energy efficient features makes smart sense. It’s one way to protect your home and save on your heating and air conditioning costs.
When choosing windows or skylights for your home, consider these tips:
- Look for an attractive window, but don’t let that be your only criteria – there is much more to consider
- Consider functionality for the area
- Evaluate the technical performance of the window and read reviews about it
- Consider the thermal comfort factor. Thermal comfort affects human comfort and that’s important when you’re enjoying your home.
The following types of glass are most efficient in winter which is when most energy is lost through poorly constructed windows are glass:
- Triple glazing, low-solar, Low-E
- Triple glazing, high-solar, Low-E
- Triple glazing clear
- Double glazing is slightly less effective than triple glaze
Single glazing tinted and clear are much less effective
Another important consideration is condensation. Since it can be a culprit when it comes to mold, mildew, rotting, and other window or skylight damage, you should do everything possible to avoid excessive condensation. Metal frames are very susceptible to condensation wince they heat up and ‘sweat’ in cold weather. The newer windows and frames have overcome much of the problems associated with condensation by using thermal breaks for aluminum windows.
Today, there are many new materials for windows and it pays to find out how effective they are when it comes to condensation avoidance. Wood and vinyl are usually the best choices when it comes to condensation resistance, followed by aluminum with thermal breaks.
Do your homework before you purchase windows or skylights and purchase products which are energy efficient, structurally sound, and visually pleasing. With the many products on the market today, there is no reason to do otherwise.