Your Guide to Choosing the Right Windows

Empty room with new windows letting in a ton of natural light.

Poorly performing windows can significantly drag down your home’s thermal performance. But, windows have significantly improved and you now have more options resulting in increased comfort and energy savings. Choosing the right windows for your home is an important decision, and an investment you’ll enjoy for many years to come.

Research shows nearly 40 percent of a home’s heating and cooling energy is lost through old windows, so even though it will cost a significant amount of money to replace your windows, you won’t have to wait very long to see a return on your investment. And it’s no secret how much new windows can add to your home’s curb appeal and overall value too. Here’s a guide to choosing the right windows for your home.

Insulation Value

The insulation value of your windows greatly affects your home’s temperature and comfort. That’s why considering the window’s insulation value is so important before settling on the right one. The U-factor value, which determines the window’s thermal resistance, ranges between 0.20 and 1.20; the lower the U-factor value, the better the window insulation is. Choosing the right windows for your home depends on the region you live in. If temperatures are relatively mild all year, purchasing windows with a high insulation value isn’t as necessary as with a home in a region where winters are very cold and summers are very hot.

Double-pane and triple-pane windows with low-E coatings and gas fillings are ideal for cold climates as they drastically reduce heat loss. Vinyl, wood, and fiberglass framed windows, on the other hand, reduce edge and frame condensation as well as heat loss in all climates.

Choosing the Right Frames

New windows are available in a variety of frame materials including aluminum, wood, and vinyl. Wood frames are a good choice if you’re remodeling and have older windows but aren’t planning on replacing all of them. Although wood windows do require a bit more maintenance in the long run, they keep the classic look of old homes, so it really depends on what your overall goal is when replacing your windows.

Vinyl windows are extremely durable, energy efficient, and require little to no maintenance. They are a top choice for homeowners looking to replace all of their windows at once. They offer superior insulation values compared to wood and aluminum windows, and will last decades. Vinyl windows are also among the most affordable choices for window replacements, and the design choices are endless.

Glass Options

There are a lot of choices when it comes to glass options for your replacement windows. When deciding which to go with it’s important to consider where you live. Single-pane glass is an outdated choice, but still suitable for mild climates or outbuildings.

Double and triple-pane windows are the most common choice for most homeowners. In addition to their high-quality insulating benefits, they also provide a good level of sound insulation. Better insulated windows also decrease the chances of condensation forming on your windows.

Window Style

Once you’ve decided on the important things like the right frames and glass options for your windows, it’s time to choose a style. Casement windows are usually taller than they are wide and open on hinges like doors. Double-hung windows slide up and down and provide a more traditional look. Sliding windows can be a beautiful and less expensive option, giving the room a more modern look with an unobstructed view of the outdoors. Bay and bow windows can make a dramatic statement and change the overall look and feel of your home from both inside and out. Choosing a style of window really depends on your overall expectations of how your home will look when installation is complete.

Deciding to buy window replacements for your home is a big decision, and not one to take lightly because chances are you will only replace your windows once in your lifetime-and with that said you want to make sure you get it right the first time. For expert installation and advice on the best windows for your home, turn to Armorvue Home Exteriors. Our reputation for stellar customer service and high quality products has made us an industry leader in the Toledo area. Contact us today for a free in-home estimate.


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