Buying or replacing your home windows can be a challenge due to the various types of windows available and the varying costs of each type of window. Whether you select a modern awning, traditional double-hung window, or another type of window that fits your home needs, it is important to understand how to determine the quality of home windows before you make your purchase. The following lists key features to look for when determining the quality of residential windows.
Window Opening Mechanisms
The higher quality windows give users the ability to tip the windows inward toward the room to allow for easy cleaning of the windows. By doing so, the person cleaning will not have to reach up high to clean the outside of the glass. Also, look at the joints to make sure they are strong and sturdy.
If you are buying vinyl windows, check the thickness of the vinyl, particularly on the lower horizontal grip piece that is used to raise the window. You will see a sturdy thick section of vinyl with the higher quality windows. As well, the higher quality windows will have strong seals at the the corners of the vinyl.
The high quality windows will have some type of UV protection in the glass to prevent sun rays from penetrating the room and fading carpets and upholstery.
Higher quality windows are windows that are double-paned and they will prevent air from coming into the home by having a type of felt material around the windows. Compare the R-factor which indicates how insulated the window is. A high R-factor number means a more energy efficient window. In addition, a double-paned window with argon gas in between helps keep the cold air out during the cold months and the warm air during the hot months. It helps keep the home comfortable and improves the energy efficiency of the home.
The U-Factor is a number that indicates whether the window is appropriate for commercial or residential use. A U-factor rating of ‘AA,’ or ‘residential,’ is appropriate for homes. A ‘BB,’ or ‘commercial’ window is used for commercial purposes.
The U-value measures the amount of heat that goes through the window. The lower the U-value number, the lower your heating and cooling costs because heat and cold air cannot pass through.
Manufacturers of the highest quality windows often include an extended warranty as well as offer to replace damaged or broken windows for the first year. It is always a good idea to compare the warranties offered with each window.
Energy Star Qualified Windows
Energy Star windows are quality windows. Energy Star is the international symbol of high energy efficiency. Windows bearing the energy star symbol are among the most energy-efficient – 20% to 40% more efficient than regular windows.
New or replacement windows will improve the look of your home, both on the interior and exterior, make the home more comfortable, and improve the energy efficiency of the home which saves money. Before you select your windows make sure you understand what criteria determines the quality of residential windows to ensure you make a smart investment.
This post is brought to you by Sarah Williams, an interior designer for homeowners in Southern Ontario. When it comes to shopping for quality windows and doors Markham, she recommends Beverley Hills Home Improvements 5775 Atlantic Drive #11 Mississauga, ON L4W 4P3 +1 800-263-4515. For more info, visit http://www.beverleyhillshome.com/