Install Energy Efficient Windows To Save Money
Energy efficient windows can make an enormous difference to the annual running expenses of your home, and can also give you a major selling point when you go to list your property in a highly competitive market. They can also give you added protection against the outside elements, as well as increased security. If the windows meet a certain standard, it is even possible that you could receive financial help towards the expense of installation.
The choice to replace existing windows is never an easy one to make. Apart from the obvious issue of the expense involved, no-one can ever really be sure how long they will stay in a certain property, nor how quickly they might have to sell it if they were to move out. There may be other structural work which will need to be carried out to even make the new installation worthwhile. Even if there are no structural issues and you are sure that you want to stay in the property for a long time, there are credible alternatives to replacement which can give you many of the benefits without the huge expense and inconvenience. For a replacement window installation to be worthwhile, you will need to be making ongoing savings, while at the same time increasing the value of your property.
The major alternative to replacing windows entirely is to use storm windows to increase the insulation of your existing windows. Although this effect is only limited in nature, storm windows do decrease the airflow through these external windows and do save money in the long run. They are no substitute for new windows made from energy efficient materials, but they are a solution which is far cheaper and easier to put in place. They are the best solution for any property where the expense and difficulty of replacement window installation will be too severe.
If you take the choice to have replacement windows installed, the next major choice to make is that of materials. You will gain the greatest benefit by fitting energy efficient windows which comply with the Energy Code, and which will offer you the greatest protection against heat leakage from your property. If you choose Energy Star windows, you can benefit from generous grants offered by government authorities to attempt to preserve energy and reduce fuel consumption. The levels of insulation which qualify for Energy Star tax credits and preferential treatment are different with each climate zone, so do your research.
If you are going to spend the money having a new window installation carried out, you may as well make sure that all of your needs are going to be met. As well as saving you money, windows need to provide a degree of security against intruders wanting to break into your home. Glass is always going to be breakable no matter how much it is improved, so bars need to be fitted behind the windows to prevent entry. If these are static bars, make sure that you have other escape routes in the case of fire as that one will be permanently closed.
The actual installation is critical if the windows are to perform as they should, and this will need to be carried out by qualified installers with the relevant experience. You can do the job yourself if you have the necessary skills, provided you take the time to get permission. If not, you will need to bring in professionals, and make sure that the price you are quoted is a reasonable one for the job. The key here is in the split of material and labor expenses. A higher quality product will be more expensive, but it will not take longer to install.
It is to be expected that energy efficient windows will cost more money, after all, that is why the tax credit system to encourage people to buy them exists in the first place. However, the actual fitting of the windows and the labor time involved should be virtually the same with any type of window installation. If you find that you are facing increased labor expenses compared with other installations in the same area, it may be time to seek a quote elsewhere.
There will always be many different companies licensed to install Energy Star compliant windows in any large metropolitan area, and even if you live in a more rural zone there will be an installer not too far away. Take your time to carry out some research, especially on the Internet where there are independent reviews, and then ask pertinent questions of those companies you will be considering for the job. It should not take long for you to narrow down the possibilities and to make the right choice. It is an important one, as you can greatly add to the value of your home with energy efficient windows.