How to Choose Windows for Your Home

Home renovations significantly increase home value. Some even having a ROI of 150%. Window replacement is one of those projects. Putting new window will totally change your daily routine. From better natural light to lower energy costs, this renovation project is by no coincidence the most popular one out there.

However, it isn’t a simple project since many things are involved and depend on each other. For instance, the type of framing you have will determine the amount of maintenance you would need to put in. It will also determine your energy bills. So, to help you out, here is how to choose windows for your home:

  1. Style

The first thing you need to do is choose your window style. There are tons of styles out there, each suitable for different environments. So for instance, awning windows work amazing in bathrooms, casements in kitchens and bay in living rooms.

This is because each room requires different amounts of natural light, ventilation and open space. Another example being sliding windows which are put in small rooms because of their practical way of opening. While choosing the style you should also mind the overall aesthetic of your home and the plan for emergency exit. It’s very beneficial to have a window well in the basement which easily opens.

  1. Framing

After you choose your styles, you should focus on framing material. Now luckily enough the choice for framing is much more limited than for style. There are only 4 basic materials out there and those are: wood, aluminum, fiberglass and vinyl. Here is some short info for each:

  • Wood – The oldest framing material. An amazing insulator, but vulnerable to rot and termites. It should be cleaned more frequently than others and depending on type, has a lifespan of 30
  • Fiberglass – The best material out there, but the most expensive as well. Fiberglass lasts almost a lifetime, about 50 years. It requires little maintenance and protects your home from every type of situation. But, it can be a little limiting when it comes to style.
  • Aluminum – This is the cheapest framing material, but the one of least quality. Aluminum lasts 20 years max and it isn’t good for homes near oceans since it’s prone to corrosion. However, it will give you an amazing insulation in other circumstances.
  • Vinyl – The most popular material on the market today. Vinyl is the meeting point between fiberglass and aluminum. It is very cheap and provides extraordinary insulation. However, it has limitations in style and color.
  1. Glass

Remember that whatever you choose makes sure that it has an Energy Star, especially the glass. Energy Stars are ratings given to certain products after they have been tested for high energy efficiency. Besides glass and windows, other products that can have Energy Stars are fridges, kettles, dryers, phone chargers and so on.

The quality of your window’s glass will dictate how natural light enters the space and the amount written on your energy bill. There are certain values you can use as your compass.

For instance, the rating VT is an acronym for visual transmittance and stands for the amount of visible light a window lets through. SHGC is solar heat gain coefficient and stands for the amount of solar heat a window lets through.

Additionally, the more panes your glass has, the better insulation. You should also mind the gas between the panes since it also impacts the window’s abilities. To purchase the most suitable window and glass for your home, it is best to consult with experts. Each climate and home requires different protection.

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