Home Improvement Calculators
View our Home Improvement Calculators
Related Windows ArticlesHow to Choose a Window Contractor Is it Time to Replace Your Windows? Questions to Ask a Window Contractor Window Treatment Trends
Advantages of Storm Windows
Most homeowners desire lower energy bills, but often the path from to savings is littered with poor design. Anyone who has gone shopping for ways to lower those bills has most likely run up against a common dilemma: buying new energy-efficient windows can be extremely expensive. The alternative, however, is to invest in storm windows – a category not exactly known for its handsome appearance. Thankfully there are some simple ways to get your hands on storm windows that are as attractive as they are effective, offering the best of both worlds in an affordable package.
What are storm windows? The term refers to self-contained, fitted windows which go over your additional windows to give your home an additional layer of insulation. Although not every model is considered gorgeous to look at, often you can find a nice compromise between form and function if you educate yourself about the materials involved. These days storm windows come in everything from aluminum to wood, ensuring you are never without good options to match any home. Storm windows also come in a variety of window pane materials as well, including at least one good option to suit any budget.
The reasons to make an investment of this sort are manifold. Most commonly cited, of course, is that fact that storm windows can lower your power bills considerably. It’s hardly a secret that homes lose much of their vaunted climate control through windows, and older homes can easily sacrifice up to 25 percent of that energy from single-pane windows. When you add storm windows, you can significantly reduce the amount of heat and cold lost to the elements – some studies have put the number above 30 percent. Savings like this will quickly accumulate and eventually even provide seed money to do further repairs, if you desire.
Of course when you save energy, you are also preserving something equally important: comfort. Older windows tend to create pockets of hot and cold air in your home’s meeting spaces, effectively turning an evening at home into a minefield of fluctuating temperatures. One of the great assets of storm windows is that they release heat far more slowly than traditional windows, giving all the air time to blend and mix more effectively. Some homeowners report their homes suddenly felt larger after adding storm windows – a byproduct of the fact that many rooms suddenly became far more livable from wall to wall!
Another nice thing about storm windows is that they do more than regulate temperature in the home – most varieties also block the sun’s UV radiation. If you have valuable furniture, delicate curtains or flooring made of natural material, you may have noticed just how damaging UV rays can be over time. Although glass is generally considered UV-opaque, older and thinner windows often let a significant amount of this devastating radiation into the house. The result? Faded fibers, damaged artworks and floors that preserve shadows and images long after the sun has set. With good storm windows, you can reverse this trend and keep out everything but visible light, extending the life span of your favorite items by a matter of decades.
One final advantage gets top billing in the name itself, however: storm protection. In addition to the many ways such clever products can make your life comfortable, storm windows can also save your life. Most of the best storm windows are designed with shatterproof Plexiglas or plastic that can withstand tremendous punishment. If you live in an area that is prone to hurricanes or there is any risk of an errant branch finding its way to your home’s façade, having a solid storm window in place may offer the best protection you can get. Even if you are in the habit of taping up your windows when gale force winds arrive, these sturdy and reliable products can spare you from the fear and uncertainty of a major twister.
Do some homework on the many varieties of storm window if you want to find a match for your needs. From interior and exterior models to multi-pane versions and more, the market for storm windows is nearly as big as the market for windows themselves,