Benefits and Features of Storm Windows for Your Home
Now that winter is just around the corner, you should consider adding storm windows to your home before the really cold weather hits us.
A storm window is essentially a second window to help protect you and your family from wind, rain, sleet, and even ambient noise. However, the effect of double windows is much greater than the sum of effects of either. And that’ because of the thermal insulation factor in the dead air trapped between the two windows.
Storm Windows Reduce Heat Loss
Storm windows are available in a wide array of styles, materials, and performance ratings, and reducing heat loss is one of their main selling points. They can be interior-type storm windows or exterior-type, and they can be completely sealed or not.
Regardless of the style of storm windows you choose, the doubling up will help keep the heat in your home three ways. First, a short physics lesson is in order.
Your home loses heat by three different methods: Conduction, convection, and radiation.
Conduction - Energy always flows from warm areas to cold areas. It’s a law of physics. Heat is conducted away from warm things and conducted towards cold things because of molecular activity. It only works by direct contact. If your windows are insulated with storm windows, the inside windows stay warm and help keep your room at the desired temperature.
Convection - This is how we heat up air to heat our homes. A furnace or other heat source warms up the air, which then moves toward colder areas, forming a “convection current.” Any leaks you have to the outside will break this current because the warm air will seek out cold air through the cracks and gaps in your house.
Radiation - Heat can also be lost through radiation, where the warmer object loses heat without warming the air (as when you hold your open hand close to a candle flame). Storm window protection can cut heat loss by radiation dramatically.
An Inexpensive Alternative
Storm windows are a much cheaper solution to energy efficiency than the latest high-performance windows. Those can cost a small fortune and require major renovations just to install. By placing storms over your existing single-pane primary windows, you’re preserving the look of your home as you make it more efficient.
Also, many homeowners wish to preserve the historical value and architecture of their homes, rather than slap on high-tech windows.
Exterior or Interior
Exterior storm windows are attached to the outside frame of a primary window, most commonly as triple-track aluminum storms with two tracks for glass windows and a third track for an aluminum screen – you’ve seen these a million times.
Interior storms are great options for apartment dwellers, condo owners, and anyone who doesn’t want storm windows showing on the exterior, because they are installed on the interior side of your primary windows.
Check The Ratings
The most important aspect of a storm window is its air-infiltration rating, which tells you how much air passes through the window in a 25 mile-per-hour wind. The lower the rating, the better.
Always choose heavy-gauge metal, a baked-in finish, and stainless steel handles to make sure your storm windows will weather the storms, and a reputable dealer like The Window Source should be able to help you out.