Double-glazed windows offer several important advantages, making them a popular choice among homeowners. Keep reading to discover the benefits of this type of window.
Double-glazed windows, also known as double-paned windows, are made up of two panes of glass separated by a thin layer of air or another gas. This extra pane and gas layer is what differentiates them from single-paned windows and provides all the benefits that we’ll expand on below.
Double-glazed windows boost energy efficiency
The most important benefit of double-glazed windows is that their extra layers provide insulation. Thanks to this advantage, people can enjoy a much more comfortable environment within their home during cool and warm months, while feeling good about this eco-friendly upgrade and saving money on energy bills.
If you live in an area that gets very cold or hot, and especially if energy costs tend to be high where you are, double-glazed windows can be a true lifesaver. As is the case with most home improvements, they cost more than their single-paned counterparts, but if you take into account future energy savings, you’re likely to find that they’re a smart investment.
Not all double-glazed windows are created equal. Based on your budget and how much insulation you’re looking for, you must choose between standard models and models that are a bit more advanced, or that offer specific functions.
Air-filled double-glazed windows are generally the most affordable option in the double-paned category. They aren’t as insulating as the ones filled with other kinds of gases, but they’re a budget-friendly choice that’ll still get the job done better than a single-paned window would.
Argon is an inert, colorless gas that makes up about one percent of the composition of the Earth’s atmosphere. Since it’s heavier than the other main components of air, it makes an effective insulator. It’s the most common and inexpensive gas used in gas-filled double-glazed windows.
While argon is six times denser than air, krypton is twelve times denser, making it an even more effective insulator. Its drawbacks are that it’s more expensive than argon and it loses efficacy when used in larger gaps (which is why it’s often used in triple-paned windows that have very thin layers of gas between glass panes).
Xenon-filled double-glazed windows are very effective at insulating, but they come with a high price tag that puts them out of reach for most homeowners. This cutting-edge option may be used, for example, in an all-glass skyscraper that needs to minimize energy consumption.
When you’re deciding on a window type, R-values are key. These values are included to give consumers an idea of the thermal resistance of the material. A higher R-value means higher insulating value. For example, the R-value of a single-paned window might be 1, while that of a double-glazed window filled with half an inch of air may be double that.
Another benefit of double-glazed windows is their superior durability compared to single-pane windows. If you buy from a quality manufacturer and maintain them properly, you can count on these windows to last you two decades or more.
You may be wondering if the gas-filled windows suffer from leaks that undermine their efficiency. It’s true that, even with seals intact, argon can leak from windows at a rate of up to one percent per year. But, according to the National Glass Association, argon-filled windows will keep performing well as long as they retain 80% or more of their gas.
There’s nothing more annoying than having the beautiful view outside your window obscured by condensation. Luckily, double-glazed windows can greatly reduce condensation, since the improved insulation helps to decrease the discrepancy between the temperature of the glass and that of the surrounding air.
Of course, when we talk about condensation, we’re referring to water that forms droplets on the outer side of the window. If you’re experiencing condensation on the inside of your windows, that means they’re not working properly and they need to be repaired or (more likely) replaced before mold forms.
Last but not least, noise reduction is another benefit you can expect to enjoy if you invest in double-glazed windows. Whether you live on a bustling street or just have that one neighbor that likes to mow their lawn early on Saturday mornings, having windows that can block out sound is sure to improve your quality of life.
If you’re still deciding whether it’s the right time to make the switch from single-pane to double-glazed windows, we invite you to read our blog post on the suggested frequency of window replacements. Also check out our post that includes tips for a window replacement.
If you have any questions or want our experts to help you take on your next home improvement project, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.