The Ultimate guide to Energy-efficient windows and doors

The ultimate guide to energy-efficient windows and doors

Rational use of energy to make a room cozier is a matter long since solved by skilful engineers who, thanks to modern technology, have found a way to fulfill this function with windows and doors. Energy saving, which is aimed at conserving energy, hence reducing energy consumption, and energy efficiency, i.e. useful energy use are the two most useful qualities of energy saving windows and doors produced today. Energy efficiency is, moreover, an economically sensible way of keeping the budget. In practice, this translates into absence of draughts, good noise insulation, retention and widespread distribution of heat in the room, absence of condensation, in other words efficient heat exchange and ventilation without accompanying problems. As you know, draughts are often the cause of overheating and consequently increased heating costs. High-quality, best energy-efficient windows and doors, which are also well installed, prevent these problems from occurring. But what is energy efficiency in terms of physics? It is nothing more than heat transfer resistance. In other words, windows, as a protective construction, are endowed with the function of resisting the diffusion of transverse air flow, creating a so-called barrier. Thus a barrier is created against the diffusion of heat in summer and cold in winter. This is why a house with high quality energy efficient windows is always warm in winter and cool in summer. The higher the thermal transmittance of a construction, the better its thermal and acoustic insulation properties and the lower its utility costs.

What products are available if I want to draught-proof my doors and windows?

Customers often make the mistake of not wanting to go into details when they are first familiarising themselves with a company’s products, and avoid consulting them and wanting to know the energy efficient windows cost right away. As a consequence, they can fall into the trap of unscrupulous companies that offer low-quality goods. Then comes the installation of the selected windows, and then encountering a number of problems that arise precisely because of deficiencies in functionality and faulty installation of structures. The client is then looking for materials that effectively eliminate draughts and prevent condensation. The question which materials will protect the windows and doors against draughts arises more and more often, and then comes the additional costs for some wiper strips, compression tapes, silicon gaskets and so on. Therefore, before you buy energy efficient windows and doors, or rather before you finally choose a company, pay attention to how comprehensive the information is given to you by the manager. It is a bona fide specialist who, before announcing the price, will tell you about the parameters and functionality that form it: the size of the opening, type of profile and insulating glass, window sill size, configuration of the sashes, additional options. Therefore you should not be discouraged from taking good advice.

Measurement with an assessment of the situation, compliance with assembly and installation techniques also influence the service life and reliability of the energy efficient windows. Therefore only the combination of characteristics allows you to judge the integrity of the window company and gives you an understanding of whether you will need to look for additional materials in the future to eliminate the unpleasant consequences of poor quality and installation. However, if you are already a victim of an unscrupulous company and do not want to replace your windows, but only want to purchase materials to eliminate draughts, you may need, as mentioned above, the following:

  • wiper seals,
  • compression tapes,
  • silicone sealants.

How can I reduce the heat lost through the outside doors in my home?

A house can lose up to 25% of its heat through door and window openings. In winter, this is a huge loss, which entails loss of comfort and significant heating costs. What is needed to minimize heat loss?

First and foremost, a high-quality energy efficient door installation is required. It starts with measurement, when the quality of the opening, masonry joints around it, lintels over the openings and other structural features, which an experienced specialist will definitely take into account, are evaluated. Preparation of the opening is one of the main factors for a long-lasting and problem-free operation of the door. The adjustment of the door is an equally important factor that directly affects the door’s ability to fulfill its function, including door’s energy efficiency.

The weak point in doors is a bad seal. The seal must be elastic, soft and resilient, but in addition, these qualities must be maintained throughout the entire period of use. It is a sealant that prevents drafts, cold bridges and condensation.

Next, it is worth touching upon the operation of the door itself, namely regular opening and closing, especially during the cold season. Here it is important to ensure that energy efficient door closes tightly, which can be achieved by using a door closer. It is the door closer that ensures that the door closes tightly.

If you take all of the above into account, you will not encounter any heat loss through the entrance door opening.

Which doors are the most energy-efficient?

To understand how energy-efficient doors are, you should pay attention to the following characteristics:

Glazing. Double glazing has a clear advantage over single glazing in terms of protection against heat loss. However, the glazing must be considered holistically, as both the chamber between the panes and the coating on the panes influence the energy efficiency. A gas-filled chamber acts as an insulator of heat, which is not the case with an air-filled one. The coating also performs an energy-saving function, depending on how it is applied and what components are used.

The U Value is the heat absorption coefficient, which indicates how much energy is transferred through the door or window. This value also depends on the coating that is applied to the glazing. The lower the U Value, the better the thermal insulation and therefore the better the door’s energy efficiency.

Things to consider when installing energy-efficient doors

Professional installation is a prerequisite for the trouble-free function of the energy efficient door. It is also worth paying attention to where the door was manufactured, as quality production also plays an important role. Only with professional equipment and quality control at every stage of production is it possible to achieve not only a high level of energy efficiency but also to ensure that the doors are made of high quality raw materials and that they are professionally treated to be as environmentally friendly as possible. A quality certificate is proof that the door is truly environmentally friendly and of high quality, but it can only be provided by a bona fide company.

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Get government help towards insulation costs with the Energy Efficient Communities Program

Australia has an Energy Efficient Communities program that supports community organizations, business owners and landlords to help them manage their energy costs and reduce energy and heating bills. This includes assistance with installation of ancillary equipment, all energy efficient building elements, equipment upgrades, investment in energy monitoring and management systems and other opportunities to improve the energy efficiency of buildings in line with the Austrian Standard.

What are the most energy-efficient windows?

The most energy-efficient windows are those that are manufactured according to all technical requirements, using only first-class raw materials and with a professional workforce. Simply calling windows energy efficient is not an option. There has to be a technical proof and this is what it means:

  • The presence of a chamber filled with gas. We have talked about this dozens of times, but we have not mentioned how to verify it. It is easy to do so by paying attention to the presence of an inlet valve inside the chamber.
  • The technical description of the windows will certainly include a point about the presence of pyrolitic or magnetron coating on the glazing or lamination that creates an energy field preventing the penetration of heat or cold, respectively heat loss. It can be called energy efficient glass.

Now for more details.

The main technology used in energy-efficient windows is a coating of silver oxide, which retains heat during the cold season and protects against excessive solar penetration in summer. Silver oxide is a component of all coatings such as lamination, magnetron coating as well as coating obtained by pyrolithic process. In addition, all coatings on energy-efficient windows reflect the heat that radiators emit into the room. And in summer there are significant savings on air conditioning.

Energy-efficient window materials

The first thing to take note of is the frame of an energy-efficient window. The material it is made of is a polymer, which has low thermal conductivity and is also resistant to external influences.

We have talked about the coatings and the space between the panes, so we will not go into this again. The only thing we haven’t mentioned yet is the optimum glass spacing, which is 12 to 16 mm.

How much do energy-efficient windows save?

The performance of energy-saving glass is long-lasting, which means that the energy-saving features are also effective throughout the entire service life. With quality windows and doors, this period lasts for decades. Initially, you will not see results when the heating bills come due. But you will immediately feel the comfort of the room. And after a period of time, the bills will be changed and will be reduced by several times. In addition to saving the family budget and reducing heat loss, energy-efficient windows reduce noise coming in from the street and minimize condensation.

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Are wood doors energy-efficient?

Wood is a natural material with inherently poor thermal conductivity. Especially if it is a three-layer wood. Therefore, while plastic doors need to be refined to increase their energy efficiency (glazing, chamber fillings, seals), wood is inherently energy-efficient. Wood does not freeze in winter, but this can only be said about a well-treated wood, which can only be achieved in production. If the wood is of questionable quality, it will soon warp, resulting in gaps and cold bridges, which will be followed by temperature changes or temperature variations in the room.

How to choose energy-efficient windows

The degree of modern energy-efficient windows is classified according to certain ranking the Energy-Efficient Rating Scale. The energy efficiency scale is a simple and clear comparison tool for windows and insulating glass units that takes into account their complex thermophysical characteristics. With this scale, it is much easier for the customer to orientate himself in the choice of the highest quality window with good thermal insulation properties.

According to the scale, the energy efficiency classes are placed in ascending order from “low” (E) to “very high” (A++).

  • E (low) energy efficiency class,
  • D (lower)
  • C (normal)
  • B (high)
  • A (very high).

Within the latter, there is a finer gradation into subclasses A, A+, A++, the latter of which is currently the highest class known.

How do I find an installer to make my windows and doors more efficient?

The window fabrication and installation company offers a complete service, from fabrication to installation, which is professionally carried out by experienced installers. If you order your windows from Prestige Plus, you can be sure of a quality and long-lasting installation.

Are double hung windows energy efficient?

Any window configuration is energy efficient as long as resources are put into the production process to enhance this performance. The type of construction does not affect this quality. The energy efficiency of a window is first and foremost determined by the materials that are used: the use of inert gas instead of air, the application of one of the available coatings that minimizes heat loss, distributes energy efficiently and reverses the heat radiated by the heating system, and the quality of the seals. In addition, proper installation is important. Therefore the question of whether double hung windows are energy efficient will be answered yes if all of the above points are fulfilled.

Are sliding windows energy efficient?

The same applies to sliding windows. In addition, sliding windows are also ergonomic and make efficient use of the window area.

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