You’ve probably heard it by now, “New windows will actually pay for themselves!”
But how true is that? How much money can you shave off your utility bill just by replacing your windows? There are multiple factors in calculating that, so let’s break them down.
While they might not pay themselves off exactly, the U.S. Department of Energy has stated that the average person could save between 126 to almost 500 dollars a year on electricity depending on region and window type. If your glass is particularly old, the replacement could yield as much as a 50% decrease in heating and cooling bills. These savings can add up, especially in small or lower-income homes. The big range in these savings depends on what type of glass a building already has.
Glass only even ten years old isn’t nearly as efficient as newer high efficiency and LowE glass. As opposed to older glass coatings that absorbed the sun’s energy and radiated the heat back into a building, LowE glass is a newer invention that reflects a certain amount of UV light without diminishing visual clarity. This can lead to dramatic improvements in regulating the temperature of a building.
By switching to new double-pane insulated windows, older buildings with single-pane windows can see massive savings. These windows can be filled with argon or krypton gas that adds an extra layer of insulation and protection from heat loss.
So new windows can save money, but the question still stands, exactly how much can I expect to pay for new windows? And are the utility savings worth the investment?
The average window replacement costs between 500-650 USD a window. So if you’re on the upper side of the scale, you can expect to pay off about a window a year in electricity savings. But most homes have 10+ windows, so there is still a large initial investment. As with all renovations and upgrades, it all comes down to individual situations.
In a building with windows 15 years or older, it is time to consider a replacement, especially if you see your utility bill inflating every year. Older buildings always benefit the most from improvements in heating and cooling. In some cases, old window frames can be recycled, and new glass can be added, cutting the cost of new windows almost in half. If you’re considering new windows, talk this option over with the company doing the replacement.
Consider your locations. People living in warmer states can expect more significant savings from window replacement. And while you may not reap the benefits of the replacement, replacing windows before selling a home is a great way to add curb appeal and raise the home’s cost, especially in a competitive market.
So while they may not exactly pay for themselves, new windows can save you money. If you’re tired of extreme utility bills or old, inefficient windows, it may be time for a change.