Homeowners today have different priorities than those of previous generations. While they are always looking for ways to save money and reduce the cost of living in their home, they also are conscious of the environmental impact of the decisions that they make. Sustainable homeowners want to reduce their energy usage for a variety of reasons. Not only will these energy savings result in subsequent cost savings, but they also significantly decrease the homeowner's environmental footprint.
Those who are searching for a way to improve their home that will reduce their energy usage and increase their cost savings each month may be trying to decide between new windows or added insulation.
Our guide can help you make this important decision.
New Windows and the Potential to Save Energy
For many people in New England, new windows are the first home improvement project that comes to mind when they want to save energy and reduce their utility costs. The fact that many homes in New York and Massachusetts were constructed prior to the creation of energy-efficient windows leaves most people assuming that they need to upgrade their windows in order to capture heat in their homes and reduce the amount of energy that seeps through the cracks.
It is true that new windows will help homeowners save energy, but there's a lot of factors to consider when investing in energy-efficient windows. Homeowners that may be considering new windows should think about the following:
Window frames, as well as window glass, may need to be replaced in order to maximize cost savings and energy savings. This is because traditional aluminum window frames allow heat and cool air to escape. Replacing only the glass will not keep the energy in the home, but replacing both the frames and the glass can be quite costly.
There are various types of windowpane glass to choose from, and some are going to be more effective than others. Generally, the types of glass that realize the most significant energy savings are going to cost a lot more.
On average, after the windows have been selected and installed, the cost savings can be minimal. The average homeowner may see between $125 and $425 in cost savings each year, which means that it will take years for the cost of savings to offset the cost of the investment.
Saving Energy and Reducing Costs by Adding Insulation
In reality, while many homeowners are mulling over which type of energy-efficient windows to purchase, there's a much more effective way to reduce energy usage in the home. The fact of the matter is, most heat in the home escapes right through the walls, rather than through the window frames or glass panes. Blown-in insulation is an oft-overlooked option, yet it provides superior results.
Here's what New England homeowners should know about added insulation in the home:
Walls cover a much larger surface area of the home than windows, which is one of the reasons why more heat escapes through the walls than through the windows. Even homes with large picture windows still lose more energy through their walls than through the glass.
There are fewer factors to consider when selecting insulation for the home. With new windows, a homeowner is forced to invest in a specific type of glass, additional window covers that may improve energy efficiency and even which type of window frame will work best. However, with blown-in insulation, all the homeowner needs to decide on is the R-value. The R-value is easy to determine. A higher R-value will result in better performance. Homeowners can work with their heating and cooling provider to determine which type of insulation is best for their home.
Blown-in insulation is a more affordable investment than new windows, yet often leads to higher cost savings.
Often times, the best way for homeowners to determine where and how to save energy is to begin with a home energy assessment. HomeWorks Energy works to provide Massachusetts and New York residents with accurate assessments and reliable recommendations that allow them to make the most informed decisions for their property. Many discover that new windows are not the energy-saving solution that they have been dreaming of, and they find that added insulation provides a greater impact for less cost.
To schedule your home energy assessment with HomeWorks Energy, contact us today.