When you're shopping for new windows for your storefront, one of the most important things to consider is the insulation. There are several factors that can influence the insulation of your windows. Most importantly, the material of your window sashes and the actual construction of the glass panes will have a huge affect on the efficiency of your windows. You definitely want to find a product that is rated for your particular climate so you can be sure that you are running an energy efficient business. This article explains three things to consider if you are looking for efficient and affordable windows.
First of all, you need to consider the type and number of glass panes that each window has. While most modern windows are double pane, you can find products with up to 3 or 4 glass panes. These are very common in places with extreme temperatures. Many modern window manufactures fill the space between each piece of glass with argon gas. This further slows down heat transfer. Of course, the more panes you have on your window, the more expensive they will be. So, if you live in a mild climate, it is not worth investing in a window with 4 panes.
Tempered glass. Many store owners invest in windows with tempered glass. This is common on storm fixtures. Tempered glass is specially designed to withstand breaking. If a tempered glass pane does break, it does not shatter into sharp pieces. Instead it breaks into round pebbles that are less dangerous. This reinforced glass is not only safer, but also in the end, a window with two thicker panes of tempered glass filled with argon gas will probably be sufficiently insulating for most climates.
Frame and Sash Material
You also need to consider the material of your window frames and sashes. Materials like metal and vinyl can transfer heat quite quickly, especially if they are hollow. To combat this, some of these products are often filled with fiberglass insulation. This dramatically helps heat loss, so your windows should not be as cold to the touch. Wooden windows actually have decent heat loss ratings. However, each product is different, so you should shop around and find a product that is suitable for your climate (no matter what material it is made from).
Basically, there is no right or wrong type of window to invest in. It really depends on your climate, budget, style, and usage needs. Nonetheless, you should be able to find the most popular styles in a wide range.