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Efficacy of Vinyl Versus Fiberglass Window Replacement

Answered by Brendan ~ September 29, 2010 ~ 1 Comments » | Respond to this question

Our Longmont, Colorado, home is 25 years old, and is of well-insulated 2"x6" frame construction. Will the extra cost of fiberglass windows pay for themselves versus a very good vinyl window replacement?

Candice ~ Longmont, Colorado

Brendan Fowler

I am assuming that you mean, "pay for themselves", in terms of increased energy efficiency. The only way to answer this question is to compare the energy ratings on the windows side by side. Every window has a different set of energy ratings. These are the factors you will want to compare. The U-Factor or U-Value is a measure of the heat loss through the window the lower the U-Factor the better the window is at holding in heat. The SHGC (solar heat gain coefficient) that is best, is climate dependant, a high SHGC will collect more solar heat, a low SHGC will block more heat from the sun. There is also an air leakage or infiltration rating. Compare the windows based on these factors and you know which one is best for you.

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