Low-E Windows: An FAQ For Homeowners Replacing Their Windows This Summer

Posted on: 9 July 2015

Homeowners installing replacement windows this summer have a wonderful opportunity to get the latest in green technology: low-E windows. These energy efficient clear glass windows can save homeowners money while also reducing their carbon footprint. This FAQ will help you determine whether or not low-E windows are right for you. 

What are Low-E windows?

Low-E stands for Low Emissivity. Low-E windows are made from glass that is protected by an invisible metallic coating. Low-E glass reflects harmful UV and infrared rays back into the atmosphere while allowing visible light to pass through the window into the home. In other words, Low-E windows are capable of lighting a room without heating it or doing damage to the furnishings inside. 

What are the advantages of Low-E windows?

Low-E windows offer homeowners a variety of advantages, including:

  • Energy efficiency. Low-E windows prevent heat from the sun from warming a room. This can reduce a homeowner's cooling costs by 12% to 33%
  • UV protection. Over time, UV rays can cause surfaces and fabrics in the home to become faded and discolored. Low-E windows prevent this from happening by reflecting UV rays away from the home. 
  • Good for communities. Low-E windows help reduce a homeowner's dependency on climate control throughout the summer. In communities where many homes have Low-E window installations, reduced air conditioning usage can lessen stress on the power grid, preventing failures.  

Who can benefit most from Low-E windows?

In general, the bigger the window, the more potential for damage to the furnishings and flooring inside, and the more impact sunlight will have on a homeowner's cooling bill. Homeowners who benefit the most from Low-E windows are those with large west-facing or south-facing picture windows and sun rooms. Anyone who uses air conditioning in the summer, who has ever had to replace faded upholstery or covered their upholstery to prevent it from fading, and anyone with hardwood furniture and floors can benefit from Low-E windows. 

What's the difference between Low-E windows and tinted glass windows?

Low-E windows are made with an invisible coating over clear glass, where as tinted windows are made from glass that is darkened. Tinted windows can prevent fabrics and surfaces in the home from fading. However, tinted windows themselves absorb heat throughout the day. Thus, tinted windows can actually become sources of heat, which reduces their energy-saving qualities.

For more information about the benefits of Low-E windows, speak with a customer service representative with your local window replacement company such as Gulf Coast Builders Inc.