Good and Bad Reasons to Replace Your Windows
It’s that time of year in Michigan when we’ve suddenly gone from winter to summer. Just a few weeks ago, we were wondering if the snow would ever end. Now, we’re already bemoaning the high heat and humidity.
Temperatures in the 90s already over Memorial Day Weekend are making sure you don’t ever get a break on your energy bills. We go straight from heating to cooling.
Since winter was so cold for so long this year, you may be eyeing your old windows as the culprit for those high heating bills and thinking it’s time to invest in some new ones.
Before you do so, there are a few things you should know. There are plenty of good reasons to replace old windows. However, it turns out that energy savings isn’t at the top of the list.
Reason to Replace Your Windows: Energy Savings
Is it a bad idea to replace your windows for the energy savings? No, it’s not. If you have single pane units in your house, you can replace them for double paned, argon gas-filled, low-emissivity film coated windows that would offer twice the insulation as the old ones. Add to that the fact that new windows will be newly fitted and caulked. Heat does come and go through your windows.
The question is how much heat?
The truth is, according to Energy.gov, only 25-30% of your house’s heating or air conditioning escapes through the windows. This is why we talk so much about home insulation rather than windows for retaining your heat and cooling.
Your attic is not the number one place your home loses heat, surprisingly, but almost. The number one place is through your walls. If you have an old home with single pane windows, you are better off re-insulating walls than replacing windows. However, doing both would be best.
The other places you lose heat or air conditioning are electrical outlets, unsealed doors and random drafts in your home.
You are better off adding a modest energy saving to a growing list of reasons to replace your windows than having it at the top. With brand new, double paned, energy star rated windows, you will probably save around 15% on your energy bills.
However, what you can’t get in energy savings by replacing your windows, you can get back in added value. There aren’t many home fixes that gain you nearly 100% in cost repayment when you go to sell your home, but new windows are one of them.
Homeowners generally get back from 69.5% for wood window replacement and 74.3% for vinyl window replacement nationally of what they spent on new windows according to the Remodeling 2018 Cost vs Value Report. And there are good reasons why.
Reasons Why New Windows Bring High ROI
- New windows are easier to clean. New models don’t need to be laboriously removed from the frame in order to clean or worse yet, cleaned from the outside. You can tilt them in easily and snap them back in the frame.
- New windows don’t have or need aluminum framed storm windows. Even if you have beautiful original wood windows on your old home, chances are good that you also have to deal with putting up and removing storm windows every year, and they are ugly.
- They can fit the style and period of your home with all the added benefits of being new. The real wood frames and divided light patterns of old windows aren’t the exception for new windows. There are styles to beautifully fit your 100-year-old home.
- New windows never need to be painted. If you have a home with siding and windows that need to be painted every few years, you know what an expense this can be. Eliminating the need to repaint your windows will also go a long way toward defraying the cost of buying them.
The Downside to Replacing Windows
The only potential downside to replacing your windows is easily avoided: don’t replace period correct windows with a cheap alternative that doesn’t fit the style of your home. Doing this can actually take away value from your home.
There are many great reasons to replace your old windows – added value, added convenience, and energy savings. Call us today with any questions about replacing them. We would be honored to help in whatever way we can!