How to Have Amazing Windows on Any Budget

How to Choose New Windows for Your Home

by Landon Ferguson

New windows can enhance a home's appearance and also increase its energy efficiency, as older windows can let in cold drafts during wintertime and warm air during summertime. In some cases, new windows can even add to the value of your home overall. Note a few tips for choosing new windows for your home so you know you make the right choice and are happy with those windows for years to come.

Consider Glazing

Glazing of windows doesn't refer to a coating, but refers to the number of panes in that window. Double glazed windows have two panes back-to-back, and this provides more insulation for your home against drafts and warm air, as well as outside noise. Triple glazed windows can also add more insulation, but note that the more glazing or number of panes, the more expensive the windows. In most areas, double glazed windows are sufficient for keeping your home quiet and for keeping out cold and hot air, so be cautious about spending the added money on triple glazing.

Consider hardware and accessories

New windows may allow you to choose upgraded hardware that is more attractive and more secure than standard pieces. This can be a good choice, except that it might be cheaper for you to buy upgraded accessories and add them yourself. You can usually find handles, hinges, locks, and other such pieces for your windows at any hardware store, and then only need a good screwdriver to attach them. Do some comparison shopping of the increased price for having these included in new windows versus attaching them yourself before making your decision on those accessories.

Consider features and style

Tilt-in windows make it very easy to clean the outside of the windows, but consider if the cost is worth it for first-story windows, when you can go outside and clean them from the home's exterior. You might save some money by choosing this option just on upper story windows alone.

Grilles are pieces of wood that connect small panes of glass in a window; light grilles are those that are added to the outside of the window for a more traditional, authentic look. However, light grilles can need constant maintenance as they're exposed to sun, rain, snow, and other damaging elements.

Impact resistant glass is good, not just if you live near a road where flying gravel is a concern, but also in areas with high winds and strong storms that can shatter glass. This glass may be a good investment in the tropics, where these strong storms are common.