As we head into the spring and eventually summer, it’s time to take stock of your energy bill. Has it been creeping higher and higher yet your usage stays the same? There could be a fairly simple reason for this: your windows and doors have become inefficient, causing drafts and leaks that drain your home of its energy.
Sure, there are ways you can modify your existing windows to prevent air leaks, such as caulking gaps and cracks; however, this only works for so long. If your home has very old, inefficient windows, it’s more cost-effective to replace them than to try to improve their energy efficiency. According to Energy.gov, new, energy-efficient windows will pay for themselves over time through lower heating and cooling costs, and sometimes even lighting costs.
Here’s how an investment in new windows and doors can keep you cool this summer.
Seal in the Cool Air
If you find yourself jacking up the AC in the summer just to keep comfortable, you’re wasting money and it’s going right out your windows. The cost of heating and cooling can eat up nearly 40 percent of your energy bill, so it just makes sense to abandon this Band-Aid approach and fix the root cause.
The bottom line is, energy lost through inefficient single- and double-pane windows is costing you money. But take our Bristol windows, for example. They are made with a U-Value that’s 30% lower than Energy Star’s lowest U-Value requirement due to reinforced vinyl frame designs. As a result, this durable material doesn’t absorb or retain extreme temperatures of heat or cold, keeping the temperature neutral to the touch.
And when it comes to entry doors, which is where a lot of your AC escapes from, you need the comfort and protection that can only be had by outstanding thermal performance. That’s why our Bristol entrance doors are made to insulate five times better than solid wood doors.
Reduce Solar Heat Gain
Solar heat gain heats your home thanks to radiation produced by the sun. So, objects like window glass that are hit by direct sunlight will absorb this solar radiation. In turn, the amount of radiation that passes through the window is referred to as the solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC). Basically, this is a measurement of how efficiently a product blocks heat brought on by sunlight. It’s represented as a number between 0 and 1 – the lower a window’s SHGC, the less solar heat it allows to pass.
Another thing to keep an eye out for is the U-Factor, which measures how well a product prevents heat from escaping. Those numbers are represented between 0.20 and 1.20. So, the lower the U-value, the greater your window can resist heat flow and provide insulating power.
These numbers can be found on your window’s NFRC label, which is an energy-rating label from the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) that tests and rates products for energy efficiency.
In addition to ensuring you purchase high-quality, energy-efficient windows, you can help keep the sun’s heat at bay by closing window shades and drapes during the summer. This will not only reduce the amount of solar heat gain allowed in, but it will also prevent your AC system from having to work harder than it should to maintain a cooler indoor environment.
Keeping cool in summer starts with new windows and doors from Rescom Exteriors. Call us today to book a design or installation appointment at 508-832-5202. We would be happy to give you a free estimate.