Winter comes on December 21st each and every year, but somehow it catches us off guard. Those fresh fall breezes are replaced with the bite of chilling winter winds. We know it’s coming, but every year we forget how it effects our daily routine and our homes. Most folks are inside more, and mostly just trying to stay warm.
Maybe you remembered last winter that you felt a cool breeze, or got a chill, just sitting in your home, and took steps to replace or repair your windows and doors in the Spring and Summer. If not, it’s never too late to start the process.
Cold weather, water, and ice infiltration can create damage to your house. If your windows, doors, and/or siding are not properly maintained, the cold weather can create heat loss, robbing you of your comfort, and increasing your utility bills.
What you should you know:
- Enery.gov states that heating and cooling accounts for more than half of the energy use in a typical U.S. home, making it the largest energy expense for most homes.
- “According to Energy Star, if you added up all the leaks, holes, and gaps in a typical home’s envelope, it would be the same as having a window open every single day of the year”.
- The U.S. Department of Energy has concluded that drafts can waste 5 to 30 percent of your energy use. If you can see daylight around the reveals of your door while the door is closed, then you have air leaks that will cause heat loss. If you feel a draft near your windows, you may need to look at a more energy efficient unit.
- That drafty feeling around your windows has a name: Convective Current. It can be caused two ways. One way is if you stand next to an old, non-energy efficient window. The cold from the window can draw the heat from your body, giving you a chill. The second happens when the warm air rises from your heat source and is then pulled toward the cold or drafty window. The air then cools, and falls down the plane of the window, creating a cold-air-waterfall effect.
If you decide to replace your windows, doors, or siding, here are some things you need to consider:
Get educated: Find out what options are available on the products and services you need. Contact a reputable, established company that will educate and guide you through the product’s feature and benefits. Look for a company that has a showroom design center where you can see the products and have different choices available and explained to you.
Get the Tax Credit if you can: Various local, state, and federal incentives and rebates exist to encourage the use of efficient windows and doors, skylights, insulation, roofing, HVAC, water heaters, and alternative energy technologies, like solar power, geothermal heating and cooling, biomass stoves, small wind turbines and even fuel cells.
Don’t Wait: Upgrades like Windows, doors and siding can be installed anytime of year, plan to order your product 8 - 10 weeks before you would like to have it installed.