If you’re a homeowner, you’ve most likely heard about Energy Star in conversations about windows and doors. But what is Energy Star? And how can it help you find the best replacement windows and doors for your Seattle, WA home?
Energy Star is a United Stated Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, program that helps home and business owners save money and go green. Energy Star does this by providing information and programs and advancing energy efficiency technology.
The majority of these programs and innovations are geared towards windows and doors for both commercial and residential properties, as windows and door can have a big impact on a building’s energy efficiency. Energy Star tests and rates different window and door products to find the most energy efficient options depending on specific climates.
The following criteria must be met for a window or door to earn an Energy Star rating:
- Be made by an Energy Star manufacturing partner
- Pass independent testing by the National Fenestration Rating Council, or NFRC and receive certifications and verifications
- Receive NFRC ratings that meet the EPA’s energy efficiency guidelines
While there aren’t specific requirements in regards to construction and design for any window or door to get a good Energy Star rating, there are some traits seen in the majority of well-rated products, including:
- Quality Materials – Certain window and doorframe materials, like vinyl, make more energy efficient products as they offer better insulation and heat or cold transfer rates.
- Low-E Glass – Low-E glass is a type of window and door glass that is coated with a transparent film to reflect infrared light. This helps keep your home cool without over working your air conditioning system.
- Spacers – Spacers keep dual or triple paned glass panels the proper distance apart for effective insulation and noise reduction.
Energy Star also recognizes that different climates have different energy efficiency needs. The agency broke down the United States into Climate Zones to make it easier for consumers to decipher what ratings their windows and doors require.
Seattle, WA is in the Northern Climate Zone. The Northern Climate Zone requires ratings including:
- A U-factor of 0.27 or less
- A U-factor of 0.28 and an SHGC or 0.32 or more
- U-factor of 0.29 and an SHGC or 0.37 or more
- U-factor of 0.30 and an SHGC or 0.42 or more
- Opaque doors (no glass) must have a U-factor of 0.17 or less
- ¼ or ½ Lite doors (about 50% glass or less) must have a U-factor of 0.25 or less and an SHGC of 0.25 or less
- 3/4- or Full-Lite doors (more than 50% glass) must have a U-factor of 0.30 or less and an SHGC of 0.4 or less
Puget Sound Window & Door is proud to offer Energy Star rated Seattle, WA replacement windows and doors. Visit our showroom at 445 E Main Ave Puyallup, WA 98372 to see your options in person, or give us a call at (253) 904-8658 to learn more.