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October 25, 2011

It’s Time To Get Energy Efficient Windows. ~ Sean Zobaa

We all know that there are many ways manufacturers can meet the standards and be “energy efficient.”

Most of it is very technical for average people. From a homeowner’s point of view, when you are buying energy efficient, you are looking to get windows that are a measurable improvement in keeping heat out on hot days and cold out on cold days. Clearly, the main idea is to keep things cool when you want it cool and warm when you want it warm. Windows play a big role in what comfort result you are experiencing inside your house by influencing the costs to keep it the way you prefer.

No doubt, windows themselves are a heating and cooling retention “black hole” for any house. Almost without fail, windows are deficient because their existence represents a downgrade from the better-insulated remainder of the dwelling. Heat and cold tend to escape or invade through windows over most other spots in a house. The goal with windows is to be as small a downgrade from the remainder of the dwelling as possible while still allowing desired light in and being able to see out.

Photo: basheem

In some extreme climates, for example, the North in the winter or the deep South and Southwest in the summer, the worse the energy efficiency of a window, the more you’ll likely have to run the heat or the air to keep the inside of home comfortable. Look around and you’ll see that the cost of heating or cooling is tied to electricity or natural gas. These costs will continue to rise and good luck finding anywhere these rates project to even remain flat. With a really energy efficient set of windows for your house, it will not take long to recoup the replacement costs.

Apparently, windows stand for a very important part of the puzzle approach available to a house owner to increase the energy efficiency of the entire home. There are more than 20 installations or upgrades, which will increase a home’s energy efficiency and reduce the energy costs you have to pay every month on your home. Windows are a great place to start because not only do poor windows increase your costs by approximately 30 percent or more in extreme weather conditions, but also new energy efficient windows stand to increase both the aesthetic quality of your home as well as the resale value.

Except cost savings with more consistent comfort, there’s a lot more goodies coming in your way for setting energy efficient windows. Start with style, as this is not the boring world of the dull cramped electric car. True, energy efficient windows aren’t those poor and gloom inducing tinted windows that immediately spring to your mind when you think energy efficiency. Due to government mandates throughout the country requiring energy efficiency in new buildings, builders have had to invent an entire line of offerings giving consumers a lot of choices in picking a pane style, shape and size that fits their ideal for appearance.

The inside of a home will be way more comfortable room to room and even spot to spot too because energy efficient windows eliminate cold and hot spots created by insufficient older windows. The inside of a home also benefits in appearance. Energy efficient windows cut off harmful wood and color fading UV rays by 98 percent. Energy efficient windows also reduce wood and fabric condensation. They even do a much-improved job

Photo: Still finding my dreams

blocking out unwanted exterior noise.

The tipping factor for many that makes energy efficient windows more enticing is the government incentives in the form of credits against your tax bill for setting them. There are specific requirements that such windows must meet to qualify for the Federal credit and the availability and requirements for state credits vary. When you start shopping around, keep your tax preparer or accountant on the horn to get the exact specs to qualify for the current tax year.  Also please keep in mind that greater incentives are likely available if you undertake other energy efficient upgrades in conjunction with changing your windows.

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Sean has specialized in contractor marketing since 2003, helping thousands of contractors build and market their businesses.  As Chief Executive of Green Training USA, Sean has created Home Energy Team, a turn-key business and marketing solution which takes all the guesswork out of running a home performance business.  The Home Energy Team platform helps energy auditors, contractors and those with no previous experience establish profitable businesses in the home energy efficiency industry.  Visit www.HomeEnergyTeam.com

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