Outdated, poorly installed windows and doors are among the biggest culprits when it comes to energy waste. In fact, approximately 68% of energy produced in the United States is ultimately wasted through various inefficiencies. That equates to around $130 billion per year in wasted energy expenses. Fortunately, a commercial window and door installation service can outfit any building with modern, durable, well-installed windows and doors that ensure efficient interior climate control and prevent energy waste. Read on for our tips on reducing energy costs via quality window and door installation.
Choose Energy-Efficient Materials
There are many options available in terms of energy-efficient window glass. Generally, windows that have more than one pane of glass will provide more insulation for your commercial property. Door windows should also be maintained and outfitted with strong, quality glass.
- Single-pane glass is very common in older buildings. Single-pane glass provides very little insulation against external temperatures and noise pollution. If you structure is on the older side, it is very likely the windows need an upgrade.
- Double-pane glass is a very popular replacement option and is considered the industry standard in new construction. Double-pane windows insulate commercial structures via a layer of argon or krypton gas trapped between the panes.
- Triple-pane glass is an ideal choice for buildings located in cold-weather regions. They are a bit of an investment, but if keeping warm air in and cold air out is a priority, they may be well worth it.
Glazing and Coating
In some cases, especially if you are having brand-new windows installed, the best option is a window treatment or glazing.
- Low-Emissivity glass (Low-E) is manufactured with energy-efficient coating. The thin layer of glaze blocks out ultraviolet and infrared rays from the sun without compromising the amount of sunlight that filters into the room. Low-E coatings cannot be applied after installation, so if you are interested in this feature, consult with a window installation service before making any purchases. Low-E coatings can reduce energy loss by as much as 30%-50%.
- Spectrally selective coatings are designed to reflect some wavelengths and remain transparent to others. These coatings are used to reflect heat while allowing visible light to pass through the glass. Ideal for hot-weather regions, spectrally selective coatings have been known to reduce the electric space cooling requirements of structures in hot climates by more than 40%.
A problem with a door’s insulation or a small crack in the door itself can cause energy waste that builds over time. It is important that commercial property owners ensure all of their exterior doors are in the best shape possible if energy-efficiency is a priority.
- Fiberglass doors are considered an ideal choice for energy-efficiency. They are manufactured with polyurethane foam cores that insulate the doors against external temperatures. Fiberglass is extremely strong and durable and will not fade, crack or dent easily.
- Wood doors made with thick panels, good weatherstripping and energy-efficient glass inserts can stand up well to external temperatures. They do not have the longevity of other materials, but solid wood doors have a natural R-value (level of insulation) that protects buildings from the elements and keeps warm/cool air in, depending on the season.
- Steel doors offer a strong, durable layer of insulation against external temperatures. They are a less expensive alternative to fiberglass with a similar level of energy-efficiency
The frame of a window is the material that supports and surrounds the glass. They are available in many different materials.
- Wood frames offer great insulation and are available in various styles. However, they do require a bit more maintenance than others.
- Fiberglass window frames provide the best insulation and are very durable. They are usually a bit more of a financial investment, which may be worth the cost for commercial property owners with lots of windows to maintain.
- Aluminum and metal framing is low-maintenance, reliable, and lightweight. However, these materials conduct heat, so this might not be the best choice for buildings in hot-weather climates.
- Vinyl window frames cannot be painted to achieve a different look but are ideal when it comes to protection from moisture retention.
Keep Your Windows and Doors Up to Date
If your existing windows and doors are in good condition, it is important to keep them up to date, especially if you are noticing drafts. Be sure to check all windows and doors periodically for any leaks. Regardless of how big or small it is, a leak could amount to a lot of energy waste over time. You will also want to caulk and weatherstrip as another layer of protection against leaks. If you notice doors that do not hang level in their frames or that creak loudly and require significant force to open or close, they may be improperly installed and in need of an update. Older window and door materials have been found to be inefficient when it comes to keeping internal temperatures in and external climates out, so if your commercial property is more than a decade old, consult a local window and door installation service.
Consider Your Local Climate
Storm Windows and Doors
If you live in an area with particularly extreme weather, consider storm doors and windows. Adding a storm door is a good idea if your existing door is older but still in good condition. They are usually made from aluminum, fiberglass, wood, or steel. Quality storm doors use Low-E glass or glazing and reduce the amount of heat transferred from the outside into the building. Storm windows with Low-E glazing also reflect heat outward during the summer and keep it inside during the winter. They reduce drafts and noise pollution and act as an air sealing measure that can reduce overall home air leakage by 10%.
Weatherstripping is a method of improving energy-efficiency by creating a barrier against air leaks around windows and doors. It can be made from felt, vinyl, metal, rubber, and a number of other materials that work to create a strong seal around the opening. Windows and doors in older building may not have it or may have old, ineffective weatherstripping. If you notice drafts or are dealing with a super high energy bill, it’s a good idea to contact a weatherstripping service. Installing weatherstripping is a good idea for commercial property owners in especially hot or cold climates in which maintaining internal temperatures is challenging.
If you are interested in upgrading your commercial windows and doors for improved energy efficiency, contact Aeroseal today. We help businesses of all sizes save on energy expenses and reduce their carbon footprints. Give us a call at 1-888-675-3981 to get started.