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Window Energy Efficiency: Energy Star

As you look for energy-efficient windows, you’ll see the term “Energy Star-certified” showing up frequently. It’s easy to misunderstand this as simply being a blanket endorsement of the window as a good choice for any home. However, the details are a bit more complex.

A truly efficient window meets Energy Star’s standards for two particular NFRC ratings: the U-Factor and the SHGC. Furthermore, a window with an excellent energy-efficiency rating for a northern climate may not work as well in the Texas warmth. Finding the right window involves understanding the many ratings that go into an Energy Star approval.

Is that Energy Star-certified window really the right choice for your house? It depends. Find out the factors to investigate here. #CustomWindowsTX Click To Tweet

NFRC & Energy Star Ratings

In order to approve a window for Energy Star certification, several criteria must be met:

  • The window manufacturer must be an Energy Star partner.
  • The window must be tested by the NFRC.
  • The NFRC ratings the window receives must meet the EPA’s standards.

Energy Star focuses on two NFRC ratings in particular: the U-Factor, or the window’s insulation capabilities, and the SHGC, or the amount of solar radiation the window allows through. The EPA has strict guidelines for both values depending on the local climate where the window will be used. If a window meets these standards and in addition to those put forward by Energy Star, it receives a certification.

Finding the Right Window for the Houston Climate

Different NFRC ratings don’t necessarily make one window inherently superior to another. They simply illustrate that one window is better suited for a different environment. For instance, a window with a low U-Factor–a sign of excellent insulation–will work far better in a cool northern climate than in the hotter Houston weather. On the other hand, lower SHGC values work well in the south as they keep solar radiation outdoors, preventing the inside of your home from becoming uncomfortably hot.

Find Energy Star-Certified Windows

Energy Star ratings for windows involve a significant amount of testing, research, and experimentation to find the right value. Once that information is available, it’s not difficult to ascertain which windows are perfect for your home.

Contact us to find your new Energy Star-qualified windows today!