Windows let in natural light and allow air to circulate around our homes, but they can also let in cold, heat or humidity, which are less welcome. This is why considering the energy performance of windows is essential.

1. What is a high-performance window?

An high-performance window is one that helps reduce air currents caused by leaks, thereby conserving heat inside and increasing your comfort while considerably reducing your electricity bill, all in an environmentally-friendly way. A window that is too efficient, however, isn’t always a good thing, as your home may become uncomfortably hot during periods of intense heat.

2. Why consider triple-glazed windows?

You’re no doubt familiar with double-glazed windows, which have become an industry standard. Now, some manufacturers like Vaillancourt Doors and Windows are also offering triple-glazed windows at an affordable cost, which, are considerably more energy efficient.

3. What are low-E coatings?

Since the 80s, some windows come with a low-E coating, meaning “low emissivity”. This thin coating keeps out heat and filters most UV rays, thus helping to prevent heat loss in the winter and reduce greenhouse gas effects in the summer.

4. What is an argon gas fill?

Standard double— or triple-glazed windows have a layer of air between each glazing while energy efficient windows contain a layer of inert gas, like argon, which is a better insulator and has lower heat conductivity than air. Used only for highly energy efficient buildings in the past, argon gas is now accessible to everyone. At Vaillancourt Doors and Windows, this technology can be applied to all windows.

Triple-glazed window with low-E coating and argon gas fill for maximum energy efficiency

5. How is energy efficiency calculated?

Professionals use different ratings to compare the energy performance of windows. The “U” factor, for example, evaluates the rate at which heat passes through the material; the smaller the “U” value, the more insulating the window. Increases in solar energy and heat loss due to air leakage are also calculated. These analyses then allow for an overall evaluation of the energy performance of a window. You can learn more here.