Whether you're building new construction or renovating an older home, choosing the most energy efficient windows is one of the most important decisions you're going to make. Even if you're relying on a contractor, you need to be an expert so you know if he's using the best energy efficient windows. Windows, doors and skylights leak heat in the winter and absorb it in the summer. Energy efficient windows can bring you substantial energy savings.
This is not an area to compromise. Energy efficient replacement windows will provide an immediate savings on your utility bills, make your home more comfortable, protect your furnishings from fading and sun damage, and increase the resale value of your home.
As a consumer, there are four basic things you need to be aware of when embarking on a window project:
The NFRC rates window performance by the effect on energy usage (U-factor), solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC), visible light transmittance (VT), air leakage (AL) and condensation resistance (CR). All of these properties are clearly identified on the NFRC label on windows and doors. Both organizations have useful information on how to take into account such factors as the amount of glass area, the proximity of the sun and its trajectory through the different seasons, roof overhangs and other shadings, temperature ranges, rainfall and humidity.
It sounds like a lot to keep track of but between Energy Star and the NFRC, the industry does a great job of simplifying it and narrowing your choices. Once you know the basics, it will be a lot easier to finalize your decision with the help of your supplier or contractor.
Wondering what the cash for caulkers qualifications will be? Although the legislation is still making its way through Congress, there are some existing programs that offer a strong indication of how the final plan will work.
What is Cash for Caulkers? Like Cash for Clunkers, this program aims to stimulate the economy by providing cash incentives for people to make changes that will reduce their energy consumption.