STANFORD UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF EARTH SCIENCES - EARTH SYSTEMS PROGRAM

Sustainable Choices

Install Energy-efficient Windows & Doors

Simplicity:
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Carbon Impact:
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Money Savings:
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Health Helper:
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Overview
Make your house easier to heat and cool by bolstering the insulating powers of your windows and doors. Windows are one of the critical areas to target, because a thin, single-paned window can transmit a lot of heat out of or into your home. If you are remodeling or considering making energy-efficiency improvements to your home, efficient windows may be an investment to consider.

Tips & Tricks
Get the right window for you. The different tools include: gas filled windows; low-emissivity coatings; and spectrally-selective coatings. Consult the resources listed below to determine which is right for your climate and living circumstances.

Improve existing windows. If you’re not getting new windows, there are some steps you can take to improve the efficiency of your current windows. Options include: caulking or weatherstripping to reduce leaky air flow; and shades, drapes, or blinds to reduce sun exposure or heat loss.

Look for rebate programs. Many government bodies and energy providers have developed rebate programs to create incentives for buying energy-efficient products. Start you search by checking here.

Web & Print Resources
Learn about energy-efficient windows:
www.eere.energy.gov
www.energystar.gov
www.efficientwindows.org

Rebate programs:
www.energystar.gov
www.pge.com

Fun Facts

In 1990, energy used to offset unwanted heat loss or gain through window cost the U.S. $20 billion. Source

Some efficient windows are filled with non-toxic gas—such as argon and kry—that improves insulation.

Windows can be specifically tailored to your needs—reflecting heat and absorbing light, or absorbing heat and reflecting light.