When shopping for home upgrades, homeowners should keep an eye out for ENERGY STAR windows and appliances. This rating verifies that the product uses around 20-30% less energy than its non-certified counterparts. You’ll be able to reduce your energy bills and make your home more comfortable during all seasons. Know that not all ENERGY STAR products are built the same. Some are more energy-efficient or durable than others, so you want to shop around a little bit. Here are some things to keep in mind when choosing the best energy-efficient windows for your home.

Main Factors to Consider

  • U-Factor: This number indicates how easily heat transfers through a window, measuring how well windows can keep heat inside the home. The number measures total heat flow through a window from room air to outdoor air. Lower U-factor numbers means the more the windows will insulate the home.
  • Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC): This rating measures how much heat-causing light travels through the window into the home. This number is important for warm and hot climates because it measures how well windows can keep heat out of the home. Lower numbers indicate that less solar heat enters the house.
  • Air Leakage Rating (AL): This rating determines how much air goes through the window’s joints and frames. The number is measured per square foot of window space. Lower numbers indicate that less air that flows through the window.

California Climate

When shopping around for the right ENERGY STAR windows, you want to look at the rating that makes sense for your climate. Energy star has four different climate zones, but we’ll focus on the two zones that apply to our region. Here are the minimum ratings for the California climates.

North Central

U-Factor = .30 or lower

SHGC = .40 or lower

South Central

U-Factor = .30 or lower

SHGC = .25 or lower

Climate map for ENERGY STAR window

Window Air Leakage

In order for replacement energy-efficient windows to get ENERGY STAR certified, they must meet specific air leakage requirements. All windows need to have an AL rating of less than 0.3.

Anlin Windows & Doors

Anlin engineers their windows for optimum energy-saving performance using the latest technology to provide maximum savings in all climates. Their products with argon gas meet and exceed the U-Factor and SHGC requirements for all four climate zones! For example, an Anlin Panoramic picture window with Infinit-e Plus/QT glazing and argon gas has a U-Factor of 0.21, SHGC no-grid of 0.23, SHGC grid of 0.21, and air infiltration of less than 0.01. This window is far from the only one that exceeds ENERGY STAR ratings. We’d be more than happy to show you the performance data for different Anlin window series and packages!

We’re Here to Help

We realize that looking at numbers and data may not always translate into an understanding of the benefits you can expect for your home. Our knowledgeable team is more than happy to help explain the ratings, how they affect your home, and which choices are best for you. You can always trust United Builders to ensure that you’re receiving the best product and service for your home and family. We hope our blog helped answer any questions you had about ENERGY STAR windows. If you have any other concerns about energy-efficient windows, give us a call at (619) 583-7171 or reach out to us on our website.

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