When you replace the windows on an older home, you have an opportunity to improve its energy efficiency. At least 30% of the demand for cooling during the summer months comes from heat gain through your windows. Thus, you can save a lot of money on cooling costs simply by upgrading your windows. In order to get the most value for your money, you need to make sure that you purchase energy-efficient windows.
Many older homes will have one pane of glass. As the air from your AC unit cools the surface on the inside of your window, the warm air from the outside warms it. As the cold window is warmed by the outside air, you lose cool in your home. To prevent heat transfer through windows, designers will use a double- or triple-pane construction. The number of panes is not as important as the number of layers of gas between the inside of your home and the outside air. A double-pane window will have one layer of gas to isolate the inside pane from the warm air running across the outside pane. A triple-pane window will have two layers of gas. Obviously, more isolating layers of gas will improve efficiency, but they will also increase costs.
A second technique used to improve window insulation is replacing the oxygen or atmospheric gases trapped between the panes with a noble gas. Because argon is denser than air, it will reduce energy transfer, and because krypton is still denser, it will provide even better insulation. On the other hand, krypton exists only in trace amounts in the atmosphere, and its rarity makes it expensive.
Up until now, this article has only discussed ways to improve insulation in your windows. It is now time to look at ways to screen out UV rays. The problem is that no matter what you do to improve the insulation provided by your windows, the sun's UV rays can pass through your windows and heat up the interior surfaces of your home. Using window film to screen out UV ways can help to keep the interior of your home cool and reduce your cooling costs by up to 23%.
If you are looking for the best cooling for your home without blowing your whole budget on your windows, then you should look for double-pane, argon-filled windows coated with reflective window film. If you have endless reserves of money, then spring for triple-pane, krypton-flled windows coated with reflective film. Rather than simply going with the most available option or the one that comes with the lowest price tag, a strategic choice of window will save you money over the life of your windows. For more information, talk to a professional like Gulf Coast Builders Inc.