This time of year the average homeowner begins the process of decorating for the holidays to warm up the interior and make a home feel more inviting and welcoming to family and guests. Decorating is fun and when your interior scenery is changed up occasionally it helps break up the monotony which will combat cabin fever before it becomes an epidemic in the later winter months. However, what if … a home was warmed up from the outside building envelope “in” to create a comfortable home all year round, and instead of just feeling warm the home “is” warm?
For this blog coming from a window & door distributor our obvious answer to this conundrum is replacement windows and doors. And this of course is a great place to start to warm up a building envelope from the outside in. There are many product options available in today’s market so to help with some basic decision processes here are a few details to keep in mind …
Not all glass is created equal. There are many different types of glass to choose from when ordering windows and doors today. The basic glass sold in today’s market is a soft-coat lowe which helps to warm or cool a home all year round. Lowe soft-coat glass reflects heat back to its source, so this glass type will help cool a home in the summer by reflecting exterior heat away from the glass and in the winter will help hold heat inside the home by reflecting interior heat back into the home. This glass type typically is a single coating of lowe applied to one glass pane on the airspace side of a double paned glass unit. The next upgrade to this basic lowe is to go with a double coating of lowe also applied to the airspace glass surfaces, which will not double the energy efficiency but will combat more of the heat reflecting properties back to its source like the basic soft-coat lowe. A typical type of double coated lowe glass is Cardinal-366. This glass will give you more energy efficiency, however because of the double coating the visible light that is brought into the home is reduced. Using this glass type on specific elevations is a good idea to ward off that cabin fever epidemic. Hardcoat lowe’s are another type of glass available on windows and doors. This glass is a heat gain lowe coating which is a great thought to have during the cold winter months, however heat gain is not a typical enhancement for a home in the summer time. This is another glass type to use on specific elevations of your home where you can benefit from heat gain during the colder months by using this glass type on southern elevations, however be sure and have a proper overhang that will shade the glass so as not to overheat your home in the summertime.
This one is easy … and any homeowner can benefit from this prescription remedy to warm up a home. Remove the screens from your windows. By taking care of this task more light will be brought into your home and as we know light is in short supply when the days are shorter and the nights are longer …
So, let’s all begin decorating for year round from the outside in by replacing windows and doors with comfort and energy efficiency in mind and removing those screens for a quick and easy way to bring in natural light during those long cold winter months.