If you’re renovating your home by putting on an addition, or even remodeling your kitchen or bath, the end result will definitely be an upgrade in energy efficiency. That’s a given, because today’s building materials are simply more efficient than those of 10 or 20 years ago. More importantly, any addition will increase your family’s comfort and it will make your home more beautiful.
Choosing the most energy efficient windows, doors or insulation has the benefit of a warmer home in winter, a cooler home in summer, and overall more comfortable living. Selecting products that will make your home’s air quality healthier and add to the aesthetics of the home is not only a great way to upgrade your renovation for your future years in the home, but also for future buyers, who are specifically interested in the features that make a home energy efficient.
New window choices offer a variety of materials for energy efficiency — wood, aluminum, vinyl, fiberglass or composite materials. All of these have their advantages and disadvantages, but the key is to choose what’s right for your home and your budget. Remembering that you get what you pay for, consult with your building contractor for advice and invest in the best that you can afford. Glass panes in the windows should be in multiple layers and be within tight frames. Windows with low U-values or U-factors have the best insulating properties. Weather stripping should be sealed tightly to keep cold air from leaking in as well as prevent moisture build-up, causing potential mold and mildew.
When replacing exterior doors, the same general principles apply. With front entry doors, choose a material that will resist harsh weather. Be sure that the door seal is tight all the way around – especially on the bottom. Consider adding a storm door both to protect the main door and to further insulate the entry area from heat and cold. Since the front door is the first impression of your home, it should look nice and set the stage for the rest of your energy-efficient selections