Double-glazed windows are made of two panes of glass with a layer of inert gas, mostly argon or krypton, sealed between them. Both the panes and the air gap are poor conductors of heat, and thus combine to ensure heat doesn’t cross through them, reducing the impact of outside environmental conditions on indoor temperatures.
One major downside associated with this type of window is that it cannot be repaired if something happens and one of the panes becomes permeable. The glasses cannot be pulled apart for the escaped gas to be replaced; another window has to be installed.
Benefits of Double-Paned Windows
While triple-glazed windows are clearly a more superior option apropos insulation, double-paned windows are more desirable due to their affordability and moderated functionality. Below are some of the benefits of double-glazing:
- Cooler in Summer and Warmer in Winter
The combination of glass and air makes for a very powerful insulator. A well-functioning double-paned window is thought to increase insulation by more than 60 per cent, which effectively bars excessive heat from finding its way inside during the summer. Likewise, during winter, a good percentage of the energy from the heating system remains in circulation inside the house.
- Lowers Energy Bills
Energy bills are always rising, with inflation and the purchase of newer electricity-driven appliances playing the biggest roles in this increase. Double-paned windows cancel that out by trimming down the amount of heat needed to keep the house warm during winter and acting as a surrogate air conditioning system during summer that allows less than 75 per cent of the sun’s heat to penetrate into the house.
- Reduces Condensation
Condensation can be a major problem, especially in older homes. Moisture may accumulate on wooden surfaces, causing them to start to decay. Also, condensed water may pose a real threat to your family’s health, especially during the cold season. Double-pane windows barely provide a platform for condensation as neither of the panes comes into contact with the contrasting conditions (heat and cold) simultaneously.
- Reduces Noise
Of all the spin-off advantages of double-glazing, noise insulation stands as the most impressive. It comes about as a result of the inert gases between the glass panes mimicking a vacuum. A high performance double-paned window has been shown to reduce outside noise by up to 60 per cent. This, however, partially depends on how well the window frames are fitted as well as the distance between the two glass panes.
- Protects Valuables from Damage
Double-glazing reduces the effect of ultraviolet light on household effects, such as furniture, carpets, electronics and wall photographs, by reflecting back a great deal of the sun’s rays. There are different types of glass that sport varying resistance to sunlight. Low-E or laminated panes, for instance, will reduce the amount of heat as well as light that enters a room, simply because they are thicker than ordinary panes.
- Increases Security
While glass windows and/or doors clearly won’t offer the best security for valuable items, double-glazed windows are far more protective than their single-glazed counterparts. It should, however, be noted that panes come in different qualities with the toughest being the most expensive. To protect valuables you need toughened or laminated glass.
- Enhances Resale Value
Windows are among the few features that can transform the look of a house (regardless of its condition) into a new-looking desirable structure within hours. Double-glazing is a sure way to pull that off and significantly improve the resale value of your home.
Perhaps the only drawback that comes along with this is the higher cost you have to incur during purchase and installation. Double-paned windows are more expensive and require more attention during installation than traditional and single pane ones. That will, however, cancel out as you begin to enjoy reduced energy bills.
It’s evident that double-glazed windows are more than just a way of protecting yourself from the winter chills and the summer’s heat. They are an aesthetic enhancement to the house as well and an inadvertent way to catch up to the times. It’s up to you as the homeowner to not only ensure that you install the strongest and most durable windows in your walls but also those that harmonize with the colours of your house and its surroundings. If you don’t like curtains, you can tint the windows at a cost and maintain your privacy while enhancing your view from inside. This is also a perfect way of barring the sun’s heat from penetrating the house.