Q. What is Low-E Glass?
Low Emissive, or “Low-E” glass has a special thin-film metallic or oxide coating on its interior surface, which allows the passage of short-wave solar energy (light) but prevents the passage of long-wave energy (heat) from the sun or heating systems through the glass. Low-E glass thus allows light to enter while also providing thermal insulation. This type of glass cuts the loss of heat during the winter and cuts the absorption of heat during the summer by reflecting the heat back to its source, thus providing year-round savings by lowering utility bills. Low-E glass also selectively filters the sun’s energy, blocking up to 84% of the sun’s ultraviolet rays in the summer, thereby reducing the degree of fading of upholstery, carpet and drapes. Low E also reduces heating costs reflecting room side heat back into the room resulting in a lower winter U-value.
The Halton Window & Door Company uses Low-E2 glass which is the latest in technology and provides better results then Low-E glass. Low-E2 is two soft coats, (one vertical and one horizontal), where Low-E is one hard coat.
The coating is on the inside of the panes so it can never be scratched or worn off. We provide an in home demonstration of the difference between clear glass, low e glass and Low-E2 glass. Low-E2 glass is patented technology.
Q. What is argon gas and why is it used with Low-E glass?
Argon is a safe, odourless, colorless, non-toxic, non-flammable inert gas that is commonly used in place of air between the glass panes of an insulated Low-E glass unit. Argon’s heat conductivity is lower than that of air, and thus it is a better insulator and contributes to a lower U-factor. Argon is not an effective solar performer by itself; that is why it is only used in conjunction with Low-E glass.
All Vinylbilt windows have a secondary seal specifically for argon gas retention. Leakage of argon gas is a common problem in this industry. The secondary seal provides the best argon gas retention in the industry.
Q. What is U-value and how does it relate to R-value rating?
R-value and U-value are reciprocal to one another. The term U-value is measured by the amount of heat that escapes a surface-a wall, ceiling, or window. R-Value is measured by insulation value. How many glass layers there are in a window to the type of gas that is between the panes of glass, are some of the basis of this measurement. The higher the R-value, the better insulated are walls and ceilings. The lower the U-value, the better job a window does in keeping out heat and cold.
Q. How much will noise be reduced with new windows?
Typically, you will get a 30 – 40% noise reduction with a regular double paned window over a regular single paned window. Please note that new windows cannot reduce the noise completely, since there are many ways of sound entering your house; fireplaces, walls, doors, and vents all allow sound into your home. Our customers mention a significant reduction in outside noise.
Q. Why do I have Condensation?
Condensation within the home occurs when warm, moist air comes in contact with a cooler surface. Cool air cannot hold as much moisture as warm air and droplets of water become visible on the window. Consider this as a warning sign that your home has too much moisture in the air. Chances are, if condensation is visible on the windows, it may also be occurring in other areas of the home.
Installing a quality vinylbilt window virtually eliminates condensation problems on your windows. Of course the humidity level of your home must be kept in check. The inner pane of a quality window is much warmer then that of a cheaper inefficient window. Vinylbilt has the highest condensation resistance rating in Canada.
Q. Why are windows normally the first place condensation is noticed in a home?
Windows typically are the coldest objects in the house in wintertime. Room side condensation is caused by excess humidity in your home.
Q. How can I control condensation?
Condensation in a home is controlled by proper ventilation. Some homes may require dehumidifiers or air exchange units to adequately control condensation. Others simply require the opening of some windows or running of bathroom and kitchen fans which should be vented to the outside of your home.
Q. What about condensation between the panes of glass?
Moisture between the panes of glass is an indication that the seal has failed. This is very unlikely to occur with a new vinylbilt window. Check to make sure that the windows you are considering are covered by the manufacturer against seal failure. A warranty that is labour inclusive is important as the labour is always much more expensive then the sealed unit itself. Vinylbilt sealed units are warrantied for life.