Your windows play a more significant role than just the aesthetics they provide and letting natural light into your home. They are, in fact, some of the largest contributors to heat loss and gain, which means they affect your home's overall energy efficiency to a larger extent. Therefore, when shopping for new or replacement windows for your home, the type of glazing used is a crucial aspect to consider because it affects the efficiency of the windows. Single, double, and triple glazing are the major options available. However, single- and double-glazed windows tend to be more popular amongst many homeowners. Unlike their single-glazed counterparts, double-glazed windows have two window panes. These windows are more energy efficient, offer more acoustic insulation and prevent condensation. However, you still need to choose the best, and here's a guide to help you.
Look at the Type of Glass Used
Durability is one of the top concerns you may have when choosing windows for your home. That's why you will want to go for a toughened glass to withstand impact. However, when it comes to double-glazed windows, energy efficiency and sound insulation should be your primary objectives. Evaluate your needs and determine what you need the most between the two. For instance, if you live across a busy road or in a noisy neighbourhood, acoustic insulation may be at the top of your priority list. If that's the case, you should go for double-glazed windows with thick, laminated panes. Their performance is excellent when it comes to disrupting sound waves and insulating your home from the outdoor noise. However, if you're after energy efficiency, low-emissivity (low-E) glass is what you should select. This type of glass enhances energy efficiency by reflecting heat while still allowing the light from the sun to pass through.
Think About the Spacing Between the Panes
The amount of space between the two glass panes on double-glazed windows also plays a crucial role when it comes to both energy efficiency and sound insulation. Generally, the larger the space, the better the thermal performance. Your supplier or contractor will help you know the ideal amount of space you need for optimum thermal performance. Also, for good acoustic control, you may need an even larger space than what you'd need for energy efficiency alone. However, note that too large of a space can promote convection between the glass panes, reducing the insulating performance, so choose wisely.
Ask About What's Between the Two Glass Panes
The cavity between the two glass panes on double-glazed windows can be filled with inert gas or dehydrated air to prevent condensation and enhance insulation. However, the former is often a better option. That's because the inert gases used usually have low conductivity properties, which tend to improve insulation.