Unified Home Remodeling

The 3 Factors to Consider When Choosing Energy-Efficient Windows

energy efficient double-hung windows

An energy-efficient home is designed to conserve and reduce energy use. American homeowners are continuing to invest heavily in smart home technology (lighting, thermostats, appliances), clean energy (solar, wind) and other home features that can increase the energy efficiency of their properties.

Gone are the days when a homeowner’s interest in windows was limited to style. Today, energy-conscious homeowners want to minimize the costs of heating and cooling their home—and they want to do so without sacrificing their own sense of style.

The key is knowing what window upgrades will give you the biggest bang for your buck. There are three factors to consider when choosing energy-efficient windows, including:

Frame Material

Wood frames are less prone to heat and cold transfer than aluminum or vinyl, but that doesn’t mean it’s always the best choice for a cost-friendly window. Unified is a preferred window contractor for top brand names—including Andersen, Pella and Idea—each of which has a variety of material and style options that can increase the energy efficiency of your home.

  • Vinyl Windows – Often a less expensive material, but it doesn’t mean it has to be “cheap.” A well-constructed, properly installed vinyl window can be a practical choice. We have partnered with Ideal Windows, the No. 1 vinyl window in the industry, since 1989 and we’re proud to be a certified dealer.
  • Wood Windows – Offer the best insulative value, but they also require more regular maintenance than the other options. A well-built wood window will stand the test of time. Exquisitely detailed wood windows, like the Pella 250 Series, are more expensive than most, but they’ll increase the value of your home and transform the exterior.
  • Composite Windows – Get the best of both worlds: a low-maintenance exterior that encases a more efficient mix of wood and fiberglass interior. We offer Andersen 100 series Fibrex windows.

Type of Glass

A key component of any window is its glass—and the right glass, optimized for Long Island’s unique climate, can help reduce the heating and cooling costs by slowing thermal transfer.

Dual-pane or triple-pane glass is notably more efficient than single pane glass. You can notice the differences, especially during the harsh Long Island winter climate. Laminated, tempered, tinted and obscure insulating glass can also provide the UV protection needed to keep your home more energy efficient.

You likely won’t need to look much further than the window’s glass to determine the unit’s efficiency, as all windows in the Energy Star program will have a sticker on them with a rating from the National Fenestration Rating Council.

Chart showing energy consumption savings as a factor in choosing energy efficient windows

Operating Design

Some window operating types are inherently more efficient than others. Our most common types are:

  • Double-hung windows – These are the most common units in homes across the country. The bottom slides up to open the unit. While there are efficient choices—like Ideals R-5 window with double insulated low-e glass and insulated frames and sashes—most double-hung windows come with the potential for air intrusion between the two panes.
  • Casement windows – Popular in climates with window issues, these units have a crank that swings the window outward to open. These operating types actually seal tighter when wind blows in toward the house, but they‌ require a fair amount of maintenance on hinges and seals.
  • Picture windows – These windows are stationary and don’t open. They come in many shapes and sizes. Glass choice and gas-filled interiors are especially important in these larger units.

Shopping for replacement windows in New York can be complicated, which is why it’s important to work with a professional window contractor. Unified Home Remodeling has been installing and repairing windows since the day we opened back in 1989.

Windows are our number one selling product with a lifetime warranty on labor and materials. All of our windows are custom made to fit the unique opening in your home, ensuring the windows function properly and you aren’t wasting your hard-earned money heating and cooling the outdoors.

Visit us at unifiedhomeremodeling.com to request a free estimate from our home improvement professionals who can help you sort through the many important options available when choosing energy-efficient windows.

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