Windows can account for 25% of your home's heat loss. Energy-efficient windows can reduce this energy waste by up to 50% and save you significant amounts on your heating bill.
An energy-efficient window can improve the indoor air quality in your home, creating a healthier living environment by reducing excessive condensation that causes mould.
Energy efficient windows reduce chills and drafts while making home quieter by blocking outside noise.
An energy efficient window lasts longer because it helps eliminate excessive condensation that causes rot.
If you are interested in reducing your energy bill and improving the comfort and air quality inside your home, draft-proofing or replacing your windows are a great opportunity. This is especially true if your home is old, drafty, if you get a chill sitting near the windows, or if the windows have excessive condensation inside them during the winter.
The Siding and Window Dealers Association of Canada provides general information about windows.
Start by getting an EnerGuide for Houses Evaluation.
An EnerGuide Evaluation of your home will not only assess the energy savings you could realize by draft-proofing or replacing your windows, but will also help you prioritize other steps you could take to reduce your energy bills. A pre-renovation EnerGuide evaluation is the first step towards claiming your EnerGuide for Houses grant.
How to find and choose a window contractor.
Proper installation and quality products are critical to realizing the benefits of replacing or draft proofing windows. Here are some good tips on choosing or finding a window contractor
The Gold Standard for window installations is Window Wise. Window Wise is a program that incorporates strict quality assurance and was developed by the national window contractors association (SAWDAC). Window Wise requires that certified contractors install an approved window using approved SAWDAC installation methods. All installations registered with Window Wise are subject to random inspections to ensure standards compliance.
Advice for heritage homes.
Windows are one of the most important aspects of a home's originality. Careful weather stripping of older, single-pane, wood-frame windows will do much to improve their energy efficiency. If the original wooden storm windows have been destroyed, it's possible to have custom wood storms made to order. If the object is to preserve the appearance of the building, avoid metal storms or storm-and-screen combinations.
If exterior wood storms are not desirable because of the maintenance factor, interior storms offer a good alternative. These are less noticeable than exterior metal storms, and they can be made to fit on the sash or the window trim. If the window sash is badly deteriorated, replacement units can be made to fit the existing frame.