How much can I save with
New Replacement Windows?
This is the question that everyone wants to know. There is no single pat answer, and most likely, no one can give you an answer. There are many variables that dictate how much you will save on your new windows.
How many square feet of windows do you have, and what percentage of your home's square footage is that? The typical 2000 square foot home has about 15% or about 300 square feet of windows. If you have a higher percentage, you would save more by replacing your windows than some one who has a percentage lower than average.
Just how bad are your present windows? If your sashes are broken, glass hanging, or broken glass, you will save a lot more. Are your old windows, single pane, double pane, have seal failure, and do you have storm windows, are all factors in the value of your present windows. The bottom line is, the worst shape your old windows are in, the more you will save, and the faster they will pay for themselves.
What window are you planning to purchase? Is it double pane, or triple pane? What are the values on the NFRC label? You will save more with a better quality window. Just remember that quality is not dictated by how much you pay for the window
Don't Be Fooled
The US government states that about 40% of your heating cost is due to windows and doors, so don't be fooled by companies that claim they will save you 50% by installing new windows. There was a company in the Buffalo, NY area charging $1800.00 for a window that I install for $500.00 (they are now out of business). They promised a 50% guaranteed savings in writing. You had to replace every window and door in your house at their outrageous price to get this guarantee. Now this amount of savings is impossible to get. When the customer came back with their written guarantee they were given the difference in the missed savings for 1 year. This may have cost the company a one time refund of $500.00, but they had over charged the customer more than $1000.00 per window and door. Of course this was a great sales gimmick to sell their over priced windows.
How to Figure your Savings
Now, if your January gas bill was $300.00 and the salesman told you that you would see a 25% savings, this does not mean that your gas bill will be $225.00. Even in July when you don't heat your house, you still have a gas bill. So, it would be more reasonable to expect a gas bill of around $250.00.
If you are considering double pane windows with low-e glass filled with argon gas (this would usually be a energy star qualified window), it would be reasonable to expect a savings of about 20% of your heating cost. If you get triple pane, 25% would be a reasonable number.
You can figure your savings either by dollars saved or energy unit saved. First find out what the total amount spent on your heating fuel in the last year. Then find out what you spent in the most recent July and multiply that by 12. This total is the base amount of energy that is used by other appliances such as, stove, hot water tank, and dryer. Now subtract base amount of energy used from the total annual amount used. This will give you the total amount of energy used for heating. Take the total amount of energy for heating and multiply it by either .20 (for double pane) or .25 (for triple pane) and this will give you an approximation of what you would save. Below is the formulas to use.
[Annual energy cost - (July energy cost X 12)] X .20 = Savings
Cubic Feet of Natural Gas Savings
[Annual Cubic Feet used - (July Cubic Feet used X 12)] X .20 = Cubic Feet Saved
Kilowatt of Electricity Savings
[Annual Kilowatt Hours used - (July Kilowatt Hours used X 12)] X .20 = Kilowatt Hours Saved
Use the following 3 simple steps to figure savings
||July Energy Used
||Number of Months
||Non Heating Gas Used
||Total Cost of Gas Used
||Non Heating Gas Used
||Cost of Gas Used
||Cost of Gas Used
||Multiplier Used for Double Pane
Cooling Advantages Also
Living in the Buffalo, NY area, our biggest concern in the high cost of heating. During the summertime, new windows will filter long wave radiation. This will keep the home cooler. So, if you use air conditioning, it will reduce your energy comsumption during the summer.
Although, you may be motivated to purchase new windows because of the energy savings that they afford, there are many other advantages they offer. New windows will function better than the old, and they won't be painted shut. They will also offer ease of cleaning, look better, and won't steam up in cold weather. Low-e glass also filters out much of the UV rays that cause fading of drapes, furniture, and carpeting.