02 January, 2024

Which energy-efficient windows should you choose?


Energy-efficient windows have become the standard option. They are used for both private developments and office buildings. Because of their popularity, manufacturers are constantly expanding their range, offering customers more and more variants. As a result, the insulation level of windows is at an ever higher level. How do you choose energy-efficient windows? You will see how to do it.

Table of contents:

Energy-efficient windows

Energy-efficient window joinery refers to windows with a heat transfer coefficient Uw between 0.85 and 1.0 W/m2K. If this seems mysterious, be assured it is not as complicated as it sounds.

How do energy-efficient windows work?

Thanks to their design, energy-efficient windows reduce heat loss. These windows limit the need for heating and, combined with solar energy, allow for considerable cost savings.

There are several elements in the construction of an energy-efficient window that reduce heating requirements:

Advantages and functions of energy-efficient windows

A constant room temperature contributes to the well-being of the householders, as they are not exposing themselves to factors detrimental to their health like draughts, overheating, or chill. In the age of remote employment, it also makes working more efficient.

Nevertheless, there are several additional advantages associated with replacing window joinery.

Less noise: good quality windows help to reduce noise from outside. With better sound insulation, residents can enjoy peace inside the building.

Property value: people looking for a new home are paying increasing attention to energy efficiency. It means a building with energy-efficient windows will be more attractive on the property market.

Ecology: lower greenhouse gas emissions mean less negative impact on the climate. Energy-efficient windows are an ideal solution for people who prioritise environmental care.

Extended life of heating and air-conditioning systems: better insulation translates into less work for these units, resulting in a longer life and lower maintenance costs.

Government grants: most governments offer incentives for their private citizens and businesses towards the improvement of the energy efficiency of their buildings. Such grants can be preferential loans or classic grants one must spend on the declared investments, but there's no need to pay them back.

UV protection: many energy-efficient windows protect the interior of buildings better than standard panes due to their coatings. They can prevent colour fading and damage to furniture and other items caused by UV radiation.

Easy cleaning: energy-efficient windows are modern windows. These days, it is crucial, even at the production level, to ensure that the customer spends a minimal amount of day cleaning, maintaining, and caring for the domestic equipment.

Passive windows

Passive products have all the properties of an energy-efficient window, except they must meet stricter energy standards. The best passive windows have their Uw heat transfer coefficient falling well below the level required for such qualification, namely 0.8 W/m2K.

Passive windows typically have a more solid, thicker profile construction. Also, they tend to be more expensive than analogous products made of the same material with inferior parameters. The best passive windows cost greatly, but guarantee years of savings.

Functions and characteristics

What makes windows effective in helping you care for the environment and a comfortable temperature in the home while lowering your bills? Let's review the most crucial parameters of energy-efficient windows.

It is worth remembering that on the one hand, there's the installation of such windows, and on the other hand, there's an equally important matter of their proper placement regarding the cardinal directions. Here, you can find out which sides of the world the windows in each room should face.

Characteristics of energy-efficient windows

The defining element of energy-efficient triple-glazed windows is their low Uw. It tells you that relatively little energy passes through the window, less than through windows with a higher U-value.

Which window components contribute the most to the energy-efficient nature of the product? These are the window profiles, glazing units, warm frames, and, last but not least, low-emission coatings.

Window profiles: in the case of the most popular windows, which are PVC windows, there are three profile classes: A, B, and C, class A being the best. It works well in residential buildings. Class A profiles are more rigid, which makes them more resistant to mechanical factors.

Triple pane glazing unit: until recently associated with luxury, today it is increasingly becoming the standard. The triple-pane or two-chamber glazing package comprises three sheets of glass separated by dedicated spacers. Air or noble gas, usually argon, is injected between the panes. The second option is used more often and offers better parameters.

Such a triple-pane glazing unit helps to retain heat on cold days and protects against excessive interior heating during hot summers. The warmest triple-paned windows have more intriguing features.

Warm spacer: utilising multiple sheets of glass, it separates the panes and holds them together. It affects the thermal transmittance and seals the joining at the edges of the panes.

Thermo coatings: at least one pane in energy-efficient windows is always coated inside with a so-called thermo coating. It reflects thermal radiation and helps to control the amount of heat passing through the glass.

Investment costs for energy-efficient windows vs savings in the long term

Investment in energy-efficient windows may seem expensive initially, but it is worth analysing over the long term. The costs associated with the purchase and installation of warm windows are usually higher than for traditional solutions. However, the savings in the long term will be significant compared to inferior windows. We have written about this above, but we highlight it because it really is worth it.

Air conditioning costs are also lower.

A worthwhile reminder is that investing in energy-efficient windows can increase the value of a property, which is advantageous in the case of sale or rental. In addition, many countries offer financial incentives and tax breaks for those investing in green solutions. Such programmes can further reduce investment costs.

Tax breaks and incentives

Before considering the replacement of window joinery, you should always familiarize yourself with the incentives created by local and national authorities. Heat conservation benefits the entire society, so tax breaks are usually expected, and often, there are special programs for low-interest loans or other forms of financial support.

An excellent partner in this regard may be a distributor of Eko-Okna products. Such an expert is committed to ensuring that his client's projects are cost-effective. Many of them are even certified experts in obtaining funding. The conditions for public assistance depend on the country, but in the European Union especially, investors meeting certain conditions can receive refunds of up to 100% of the incurred costs.

Which energy-efficient windows to choose

Manufacturers of energy-efficient windows usually offer at least a few eye-catching models. The number of British, Irish and other window manufacturers is enormous. Depending on the material used, which windows should you choose?

Energy-efficient window profiles use one of the four most popular materials. Let's skim over their pros and cons.

The material is the basis, but the installation of energy-efficient windows is equally elementary. If you plan to buy energy-efficient windows, consult experts in thermal insulation and joinery distributors. The final choice should consider individual needs and preferences to ensure energy savings and living comfort for many years.


See also

Eko-Okna S.A.
Kornice, ul. Spacerowa 4
47-480 Pietrowice Wielkie
NIP: 6391813241, KRS: 0000586067

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