When looking to reduce your energy bill or when you start researching replacement windows, the biggest question we get is, "When is it worth the cost to replace windows in my home?" We understand that replacing windows in your home is an investment, so here are six reasons that we highly recommend investing in your replacement windows.
1) When your windows are broken or unsafe
Obviously, it's always important to replace broken windows for security and energy purposes. Not only do those broken windows allow for weather to enter your home, but they could also be a safety hazard for children or adults.
On many older wood and aluminum windows, the balance system that supports the weights of sashes no longer operates correctly, resulting in sashes that can fall shut very quickly when opened. This can lead to injury.
2) When you want to lower energy costs
Generally, the cost to replace windows won't be entirely offset by energy costs as only a portion of the heat gained or lost from your house is through your windows. The National Fenestration Rating Council, or NFRC, has reported that an estimated 40% of energy costs are affected by the performance of your doors and windows.
But, you'll still see a noticeable change in your monthly power bill—15% less at a minimum—as windows are the most significant source of heat gain. With a major upgrade and professional installation, that number could jump as high as 33%. You'll also notice more pleasant living conditions overall.
To find the most energy-saving benefits, install new windows that:
- Are made of the highest-performing low e-glass, as not all low-E is the same
- Use high-quality multi-chamber vinyl frames
- Are double-paned with significant airspace (greater than 1/4”)
- Use a foam-based glass spacer instead of metal
- Are installed with top-of-the-line sealing materials
3) Low e-glass windows
For windows in New Orleans, this can be even more important. Low e-glass windows reflect 40-70% of the sun's energy, keeping your house cooler from the very beginning. E-glass, or solar control, windows are created to better block infrared light, as well as some UV rays. Infrared light is the main heating component of sunlight, while UV rays can fade furniture or other fabrics in your home.
When you're considering replacing windows in New Orleans for energy reasons, you can also take a look at a window's Solar Heat Gain Coefficient, or SHGC. This measures how effectively the window blocks heat coming in from the sun. The lower the rating, the better. Homeowners who install windows that have a SHGC rating of 0.3 or lower can even receive a federal tax credit.
A premium e-glass window with a low SHGC rating can be a worthwhile investment that helps you save money each month on your electric bill, and it can create a better living environment, especially in hot areas like New Orleans.
To learn more about how we create our specially-made windows for the hot and humid New Orleans climate, check out the video below.
4) When you want to improve resale value
When considering replacement windows cost, always consider the resale value it will add to your home. And, think about doing it sooner rather than later so you can enjoy the benefits of your new windows for longer!
According to the National Association of Realtors' 2016 Cost Versus Value study, you'll get about 73% of their replacement window investment back if you sell your home. And, keep in mind that very few house upgrades come close to recouping 100% of your investment during resale.
If you want to replace your windows, however, always ensure that you buy windows that match the current look, feel, and quality of your home. Buying windows that clash with a home's style, or cheap windows added to an upscale home, can actually devalue your home come sale time.
But, high-quality, well-installed windows can create a great look for your home that instantly improves your overall curb appeal.
5) When you need better access and ease-of-use
Those with older homes understand the challenges of living with older windows—they're difficult to open and keep open, and they're even more difficult to clean. Some may even be painted shut. Newer double-hung windows provide greater ease-of-access to cleaning areas and can slide up or down to increase ventilation.
You should always consider the cost to replace windows, but don't forget the daily living benefits you'll receive from new windows throughout your home.
6) When repairs just won’t cut it
If the cost to replace windows is too high up-front, consider repairing those you can and replacing those that need it the most, especially those in the front of the home. Some issues can be solved with repairing the window and frame itself. Adding cheaper storm and screen windows can also provide some insulation benefits. An article from Consumer Reports discusses ways to repair your windows without replacing them.
However, for some windows in New Orleans, the time and costs to repair them simply won't be worth it. This is especially true in humid environments where original wood frames have rotted or decayed.
Choosing to replace windows in your home is a big investment, but it's often worthwhile for those with older homes in the New Orleans area. Call LAS today to learn more about how we create windows that are specially built for the Gulf Coast region. Our professionals will work closely with you to find windows perfectly matched for your home and needs.