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As the features in our homes age, they become inefficient, and manufacturers create better versions of the appliances and devices we use each day. Windows are one of the most important features of your home, but they could be costing you extra money in energy if they’re old and haven’t been replaced or upgraded in a few decades.
Upgrade Cost Versus Energy Savings
The size of your home and the current state of your windows will influence how much you save in the coming years on your energy bills. The government’s ENERGY STAR program provides some basic numbers that you might see when upgrading from different types of windows.
The U.S. Department of Energy suggests that residents in New England can save an average of $91 a year by upgrading double-paned, clear glass to ENERGY STAR rated windows. Homeowners upgrading from single-paned windows to double-paned may save $465 a year.
When looking at nationwide figures, the potential savings on switching from single-paned to double-paned windows for homeowners in Massachusetts and around New England is the largest average savings in the country.
Consider: It’s not just outright energy savings.
Saving money on heating oil and electricity is important for virtually all families, particularly when heating oil costs are so volatile each year. However, new windows may help you save money on energy in unexpected ways.
“New, energy-efficient windows eventually pay for themselves through lower heating and cooling costs, and sometimes even lighting costs.”
Speaking with your contractor can help you determine the potential cost of your new windows, and a look at your average energy costs can help you figure out how long it will take for your new windows to pay for themselves.
Improving the Energy Efficiency of Your Windows
If you’re not yet ready to replace all the windows in your home, there are some targeted improvements you can consider to boost their efficiency. The Department of Energy offers some simple window upgrades, maintenance, and replacement projects that may improve your home’s energy efficiency.
According to the federal government, some of the other features you can consider when improving the energy efficiency of your windows include:
- Storm windows
- New caulking
- New weather-stripping
- Interior window treatments
Tip: These improvements may also be targeted at the doors of your home. Do your doors let in cold drafts in the winter or let cool air escape your air conditioned home in the summer? Improvement or replacement of your doors could increase your energy savings even more alongside work on the windows.
Return-on-Investment for New Windows
If you’re thinking about selling your home in the near future, one of the ways you can improve your chances of selling quickly is by making targeted upgrades and performing select renovations on features that people like to see when they’re looking to buy a home.
Some of the most popular areas of your home that may lead to a higher sales price or a quicker sale include upgrading the kitchen and bathroom, as well as installing a new deck or new siding. Also, window replacement is also a project that offers solid return-on-investment.
According to an article on Angie’s List:
“The energy efficiency of new windows is a clear benefit to switching out older windows, but in some cases, it’s a safety feature, too. Costs depend on the number of windows you’re replacing, of course, and the type. Expect a return on your investment of at least 70 percent.”
Consider This Extra Project
Summer is a terrific time for home improvements, and now’s the time to upgrade, replace, and renovate features in your home so that your electricity bills this winter won’t take such a large bite out of your budget.
According to The Huffington Post, replacement windows are one of the best ways to save energy in your home, but you can also think about simple window installation kits in the meantime.
“Taping up your windows isn’t kind of home accoutrement that will win you any awards from Architectural Digest, but some people swear by plastic window wrap as a way to keep energy costs down by keeping the cold out.”
Window coverings work best when the frames and other features of the windows are in good condition (like the weather-stripping and caulking).
Want Help With Your New Windows?
Are you looking for ways to improve the energy efficiency of your Middlesex County home? Contact O’Sullivan Installs for a FREE Consultation and download our free guide: “Seven Questions to Ask When Hiring an Exterior Remodeling Contractor in Massachusetts” for valuable guidance on your home improvement project.
About the Author – Tim O'Sullivan
I started in the window and door business at 18 yrs old. My first job was for a local corner shop in Lowell, Ma that gave me a unique experience working with exterior remodeling products. I saw both the good and bad products and contractors and learned a lot about what distinguished one from the other. My goal in launching O’Sullivan Installs is to be the diamond in the rough. We don’t offer a buy-today discount to distract you from the remodel at hand and we don’t offer the cheapest products on the market that won’t last. We offer what we feel are the best quality products on the market with the highest quality install you can get, and we offer it all at the best value. We are so confident in our product and installation that they come with a Lifetime Workmanship Warranty.