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When the time comes to replace your windows, you might have one thing on your mind: finding versions that look good on your house. However, if your time, money, and energy are worth anything to you, here are three great features you should look for.
1. Tilt-and-Swing Hinges
If you have a home with a second story, you might find yourself choosing between windows that you can barely see through and a Saturday afternoon filled with ladders, buckets of cleaning solutions, and near-death experiences. Second-story windows are notoriously difficult to clean, and that is why some manufacturers have started offering double-hung windows with tilt-and-swing hinges.
These windows are engineered with dual hinges that allow the homeowner to decide how to open the window. In addition to the normal setting, which allows the homeowner to open the window to improve ventilation, homeowners can also tilt the window indoors, where cleaning is safe and simple. This means that instead of climbing a ladder and scaling your roof to remove those rain droplets and dirt accumulations, you can scrub to your heart's content from the safety of your second-story bedroom or living area.
Windows with tilt-and-swing hinges are more than just a time-saver. With falls being the leading cause of homeowner injury, upgrading your windows could save you from unnecessary visits to the hospital—or even death.
2. Low-E Coatings
If you are like most people, for you one of the best parts about going green is saving a lot of money during the month. However, since most people don't want to live in a hot, humid home, you might be left wondering what you can do to save money on heating and cooling—without turning off your air conditioner or furnace altogether.
Believe it or not, you might be able to lower your monthly energy costs by looking for replacement windows with low-emittance coatings, also called low-E coatings. These windows contain a completely invisible, ultra-thin layer of metal, which helps to reflect carefully heated and cooled air inside where it belongs. Low-E windows also help to reflect heat-generating UV light back outside, keeping your home an even and comfortable temperature.
Although older low-E coatings were often super-shiny and easily damaged, new varieties are designed to be scratch-resistant and glare-resistant, and that reduces upkeep costs and day-to-day frustration.
3. Dissimilar Glass Panes
Do you ever get tired of listening to that outdoor traffic or your neighbor's constantly barking dog? If you want your home to be quieter, look into windows made with dissimilar glass panes.
Although windows with dissimilar glass look just like normal windows, the panes are designed to be different thicknesses, and that helps to break up the sound transmission through the glass. Window manufacturers measure sound transmission by rating windows according to their STC, or sound transmission coefficient. The higher the STC, the better the window is at blocking noise. Standard dual-paned windows have an average STC of around 29, while varieties with dissimilar glass panes can carry STC ratings of 30 to 34, even without fancy upgrades like laminated glass panels. Since sound transmission is slashed in half for every 10 points on the STC scale, a window pane rated at a 34 would allow half as much noise into your home as a brand-new window with a measly 24 STC rating.
Windows with dissimilar glass panes are also extremely affordable, only costing between 3% and 20% more than traditional windows. That means that if you were going to spend $200 on a new living-room window anyway, spending between $206 and $240 could make your home more serene.
By finding windows that are custom tailored to your personal preferences, you might be able to enjoy a more comfortable home and a shorter chore list. Talk to a company such as Miller Roofing & Guttering Inc. for more information.Share