Rjw exteriors logo.

Types of Energy-Efficient Windows and Doors: The Ultimate Guide for New Jersey Homeowners

Purchasing replacement windows is not something a homeowner does often, so we’ve created a helpful guide for you. Here’s what you need to know about energy-efficient windows and doors. 

Increasing Your Energy Efficiency by Replacing Your Windows and Doors

Solar heat gain coefficient? Low-e glass? How do you interpret the information you receive on the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) label? Here’s some helpful vocabulary you should familiarize yourself with related to window glass and frame material. 

Helpful Vocabulary to Know When Searching for the Best Energy-Efficient Windows

  • Double-glazed windows
  • Triple-glazed windows
  • Low-e glass coatings
  • High-performance window panes
  • Solar heat gain coefficient
  • Energy Star

Double-glazed windows/triple-glazed windows 

Double-glazed windows consist of two panes of glass with a space between them, filled with a layer of inert gas like krypton or argon gas. Triple-pane glass windows have three panes of glass and two insulating spaces filled with air. Both designs enhance insulation and reduce heat transfer.

The benefits of double and triple-pane windows are improved thermal performance, reduced energy bills, enhanced noise insulation, and increased comfort indoors.

woman reads near energy-efficient window

Low-e coated windows (low-emissivity glass) 

Windows with a low-e coating have a thin layer of metallic oxide on the glass surface that reflects heat while allowing light to pass through. They help regulate indoor temperatures and block harmful UV rays. Installing low-e windows also reduces the fading of furniture and fabrics and makes your home more comfortable. 

High-performance window frames

Window frames play a crucial role in your window’s energy efficiency. Materials like vinyl, fiberglass, and composite offer better insulation than traditional aluminum frames. A high-quality window frame can improve the energy performance of a window. 

Solar heat gain coefficient

The Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) measures how much solar radiation passes through a window or door and contributes to heat gain indoors. It is expressed as a number between 0 and 1, with lower values indicating less solar heat gain and higher values indicating more solar heat gain.

For replacement windows and doors, the SHGC is an essential factor for energy efficiency. A lower SHGC is desirable in hot climates to reduce the amount of solar heat entering the building, thereby decreasing the need for cooling and lowering energy costs. In contrast, a higher SHGC may be preferred in cold climates to maximize solar heat gain and reduce heating expenses.

ENERGY STAR-certified windows and doors

ENERGY STAR-rated windows and doors meet strict energy efficiency criteria set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). They are independently tested and certified to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. Buying products with the ENERGY STAR certification guarantees you will save energy, lower utility bills, and improve indoor comfort and environmental sustainability.

When choosing energy-efficient windows and doors, it’s important to note that it’s not one-size-fits-all. Work with a window and door contractor in your area to consider factors such as climate, orientation, budget, building codes, and desired performance characteristics to select the most suitable options for your property.

For the most energy-efficient windows in Northeastern New Jersey, contact RJW Exteriors. We are proud to use Home Guard doors and windows. These premium and customizable products will help you save money on energy bills while providing your family with a comfortable, secure environment. Contact a member of the RJW Exteriors team today to learn more.