New, eco-friendly windows help budget-conscious property owners to cool down costs on heating while improving the overall aesthetics, curb appeal, and comfort of their homes.
But if you want to go green, knowing how to choose and then install the correct units for your house is vital since the process requires you to understand different aspects that ultimately determine the success of your replacement project.
That is why our team reached out to different Regina windows and doors experts to help you avoid common pitfalls and select the best units for your house.
Want to learn everything in detail? Read on to find out how to choose the most eco-friendly windows!
Replacement windows come in various sizes, shapes, materials, prices, and styles. Here are the main aspects to consider when choosing the best option for your home.
A. Window Material
Quality is vital when choosing a material for your window frame replacement. Here are the top eco-friendly options.
Fibreglass is a mixture of glass particles, which comprises sand bonded by resin. Replacing your windows with fibreglass materials is an excellent choice if you prioritize high-energy efficiency.
Fibreglass window frames require little maintenance and look beautiful. If you’re looking to use fibreglass, look for foam insulation options in the cavities to ensure optimal energy efficiency. Fibreglass materials have a high “R” value.
It also helps homeowners save energy when combined with insulated glass (energy efficient). However, unlike wood frames, fibreglass materials aren’t recyclable, making them less eco-friendly.
Wood is a popular option, especially for those who want a classic and warm home exterior. This natural resource is considered eco-friendly and recyclable.
While replacing your windows with wood materials is beautiful, it’s not recommended for regions with extreme weather conditions. In these areas, wood framing can get damaged due to moisture retention.
It also requires more maintenance than fibreglass or vinyl and can be expensive, but it’s worth the investment for those who live in climate-friendly regions.
Vinyl is a highly affordable option and can be painted in many colours. Many homeowners like it since the outer look of vinyl frames can mimid wood, adding aesthetics to your property while keeping it budget-friendly.
These frames don’t require frequent maintenance, such as refinishing, staining, or painting. Fully welded frames and sashes add durability and strength, increasing your windows’ lifespan.
Vinyl is typically considered an eco-friendly product because it can be recycled. It is highly recyclable and can be used to manufacture other vinyl products.
B. Window Glazing
1. Low-e Glass
A low-emissivity or low-E glass has a low emissivity coating, implying that the window will reflect heat into your home during winter and away from your room during summer. It also prevents the sun’s harmful rays, improving the style and performance of your window.
If you’re looking to repel heat, go for a Low-E glass to replace your windows. But if your building uses passive solar principles and you rely on the windows facing north for warmth during winter, you don’t want to consider this option.
2. Double Glazing
Double-glazing, also known as an insulated glazing unit (IGU), comprises two glass sheets bonded together with an air gap in between. This air gap serves as a buffer that decreases the transfer of heat energy via the IGU.
The gap often contains argon (an inert gas), further decreasing the heat flow.
3. Triple Glazing
Triple glazing is similar to double glazing, except that it features three glass panes, creating two air gaps filled with argon. The extra gap and glass pane increase the window’s sound and heat insulation properties.
So, it’s an excellent choice for rooms that receive little natural light and are often cold. The noise reduction benefits of triple glazing also make it a wise choice for those who live in noisy areas, such as a bustling city or a nearby motorway.
Your home might not require triple glazing in all rooms, so ensure to get professionals to help you find the ideal combination.
C. Window Energy Ratings
All windows have the WERs (Window Energy Ratings), a grading system that uses the letter A to G, with A being the best performing window. When buying new windows, you should pay attention to the three core factors that determine the energy efficiency rating:
- G Value (Solar Gain): No homeowner wants to pay to heat their house when they can easily use natural energy from sunlight. The G value tests the amount of heat transferred through the window from the sun.
- L Value (Air Leakage): The L value tests how airtight a window is. If the window has any weak point, it will be detected. You want to choose a window with a 0-L value for optimal energy efficiency.
- Thermal Efficiency (U Value): The U value checks the heat loss from a window, and it’s measured by the amount of heat transferred from a side of the window. The higher the U value, the cooler your room because more heat loss occurs.
Ensure to choose window energy ratings ranging from A to C to improve your home’s energy efficiency.
D. Eco-Friendly Replacement Windows: How Much Do They Cost?
While you can think that “green” windows might break the bank compared to standard units, it is not always the case.
The price is made of just the same factors: size, glazing type, window frames, different add-ons and security, hardware, etc. And while it is impossible to give a precise quote here, the table below represents the approximate price range for different popular window styles in Regina, Canada.
|Location||Casement Window||Awning Window||Sliding Window||Single-Hung Window||Picture Window|
|Basement||$535 – $1,022||$471 – $1114||$394 – $1057||n\a||$315 – $1518|
|Bathroom||$446 – $1,032||$432 – $943||$394 – $1033||$95 – $1500||$388 – $1242|
|Bedroom||$444 – $1193||$893 – $909||$437 – $1521||$587 – $2115||$226 – $2324|
|Bonus room||$676 – $1134||$494 – $944||$820 – $1248||$634 – $1374||$420 – $2305|
|Dining room||$550 – $1348||$843 – $1429||$669 – $1957||$529 – $1466||$316 – $2072|
|Family room||$605 – $1999||$621 – $1157||$490 – $1131||$569 – $1155||$354 – $2661|
|Foyer||$858 – $1999||n\a||$465 – $778||$500 – $854||$338 – $1552|
|Front||$583 – $1014||$483 – $1414||$785 – $968||$510 – $925||$359 – $2933|
|Garage||n\a||$703 – $902||$391 – $1085||$588 – $732||$334 – $1536|
|Kitchen||$329 – $1356||$419 – $1471||$394 – $1595||$445 – $1595||$202 – $2179|
|Living room||$484 – $1614||$485 – $1384||$433 – $2327||$429 – $1614||$226 – $2898|
|Master bedroom||$545 – $1304||$588 – $1120||$452 – $1810||n\a||$335 – $2370|
|Nook||$549 – $1149||$734 – $920||$658 – $1142||$473 – $1186||$337 – $2440|