13 Things To Know About Windows
- Leaky and inefficient windows, skylights, and glazed doors account for more than 25 percent of the average household’s energy bills, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
- Cut noise with insulated or double-pane windows. Wider air spaces and thicker glass reduce noise more.
- Useful Life: Most manufacturers say windows should be replaced after about 20 years. Signs of a failing window include being sealed or painted shut, draftiness, and panes that collect condensation, ice, and frost.
- Skylights provide 30 percent more light than vertical windows of the same size.
- Solid Wood: Great insulator against heat and cold, but it’s costly, requires maintenance, and is subject to swelling and contracting.
- Aluminum: Strong, affordable, and low-maintenance, but conducts heat and cold.
- Clad: The most expensive type, with wood frames inside and aluminum or vinyl shell on the outside; wood frame helps minimize the transfer of heat and cold, while exterior shell makes window low-maintenance.
- Vinyl: Affordable and low-maintenance, but color may fade over time.
- Composites: Stronger and more durable than wood and vinyl, and priced between the two; can be painted to match a home’s decor.
- Professionally applied window coatings cut glare and energy costs and block UV rays that cause flooring, fabrics, and windows to fade.
- Casement: Easy to crank open. Great for over sinks, countertops, and appliances, where leaning over and lifting a window open would be difficult.
- Awning: Comes in all sizes. Works well with fixed windows. Design allows window to remain open during a light rain.
- Single- and double-hung. Classic styling. Makes for easy lifting, tilting, and cleaning.
Courtesy of Better Homes & Gardens | June 8, 2015