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We’ve compiled a list of practical facts regarding windows and the role they play in looks and efficiency:

1. Reduce energy costs

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, inefficient and leaky windows, doors, and skylights are responsible for more than 25% of an average home’s energy bill. You can reduce up to 15% of energy costs when you switch to double-pane insulated glass windows with heat-resistant coatings and Energy Star ratings.

2. Reduce noise

Insulated or double-pane windows with a ¼ inch to 1 inch of air between panes are great for insulating sound. Thicker glass and wider air spaces reduce more noise.

3. Lifespan

Most manufacturers state that windows should be changed after about 20 years of service. Some of the signs that show your windows need replacing include draftiness and glass panes that collect frost, ice, and condensation.

4. Skylights

Windows in the roof or skylights give 30% more light when compared to vertical windows of the same size.

5. Custom Grilles

You can add customized grilles to any standard-size window.  You can have grilles made from a sketch or drawing and special grilles don’t make a big difference in a window’s price. Talk to your local retailer about costs and options.

6. Solid Wood Windows

Wood windows are good insulators against cold and heat. Their downside is the higher cost and the required maintenance. They are also prone to swelling and contracting.

7. Aluminum Windows

Aluminum windows are very strong, practically maintenance free, and affordable. But they do conduct heat and cold so they aren’t recommended for colder climates.

8. Clad Windows

Clad windows are the most expensive type. They feature wood frames inside and vinyl or aluminum outside shell. The wooden inside reduces the transfer of heat and cold whereas the outside shell makes them low-maintenance.

9. Vinyl Windows

Vinyl windows are the most affordable option. They are very low maintenance but their color may fade over time.

10. Composite Windows

Composite windows are more durable and stronger than both vinyl and wood windows. Their cost ranges between the two and they can even be painted to match your home’s decor.

11. Low-E Coatings

Low-emissivity glass reflects heat back to its source due to a thin metallic coating. This helps keep the heat inside the house during the cold months and out of it when it’s hot outside. Low-E coatings also block UV rays while letting 95% of natural light to pass through and reduce energy costs.

12. Glass Treatments

Rather than adding privacy by using window treatments, consider using special glass treatments. Bubbled and frosted glass and glass block provide light but limit the visibility. Ground-level bathrooms are a great place to use them.

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