The Qualities of the Best Replacement Windows on the Market – Part 2: The Features

The Qualities of the Best Replacement Windows on the Market – Part 2: The Features

October 11, 2017

When searching for a window, You might not  place too much thought into the window’s features. After all, windows perform a basic function, right? ? Well you might want to revisit your thinking a bit. While it  used to be that traditional windows didn’t offer much in terms of features, the windows of today are so much more than ventilation devices. You might be surprised to learn the many newfangled features that modern windows have to offer.  To make the most of these features, you should first know what exactly to look for.

The Features

Energy Efficiency

Most homes require air conditioning to stay cool during summer and warm in winter. Some homes also have heaters (or a heating system) to supplement the warmth of a traditional fireplace, which unfortunately no longer suffices  in heating the entire home by itself. Unfortunately, heating and cooling requires a lot of energy. In fact, these devices contribute to over 50% of the home’s energy use, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

With the ever-increasing cost of energy, it’s imperative that every part of the home conserves energy as much as possible. Energy is usually lost because of poor wall insulation, roof insulation and through doors and windows.

Modern windows are now made to be energy-efficient in the sense that they have the ability to reduce the home’s energy consumption. They prevent the loss of energy by preventing extra heat from coming in or being lost through the glass panel and frame. Today’s windows usually have at least two gas-filled glass panels and a low-E coating, which are features designed specifically to reduce unwanted energy loss. The additional panels, gas and coating all contribute to the energy-efficient properties of the window.

Rating Energy Efficiency: The NFRC Ratings

As you might have guessed, not all energy-efficient windows have the same rating. This means that not every type of window can save you the same amount of money on your energy bills. To identify the window with the highest energy-efficient rating, you’ll need to search for the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) Label.

The label usually has four parts: U-factor, Solar Heat Gain Coefficient, Air Leakage (lower ratings indicate a more energy-efficient product)  and Visible Transmittance, where you’ll want to look for the highest number. This measures the amount of light that is allowed to pass  through the window, so the higher the rating, the better.


Aside from energy efficiency, the other features that you’ll need to look for in modern windows is durability, and you will get this from high-quality frames, made from materials such as Fibrex. Fibrex frames are highly durable and are designed to withstand all weather conditions. More importantly, Fibrex frames require less maintenance, and won’t lose their luster and beauty even after years of service.

Now that you know what features to look for, it’s time to learn where to look!  Tune in for the next post.


Hear From Our Customers

This was a great crew to work with. Both the original install manager we worked with (Jay) and the install team (Daniel, Mason, Tony, Ethan, and Jose). Everyone was very professional and knowledgable. They answered all my questions and the end result on the house is great. In 3 days they replaced an old bay window with a new bay window, a set of french doors on the patio with a sliding patio door, and our old front door with a new front door and storm door.

Jason and Brett did an awesome job installing our doors. We had separate installers a month earlier for our windows who also did a fantastic job. They were all very professional and cleaned up almost better than the area looked before the installation! Since these were both jobs that took more than one day the installers were great at keeping us informed on the status of where the project was at along the way.

I cant express how happy we are with choosing Andersen for our window installation. Our sales representative was knowledgeable with product and answered any questions we had without hesitation. I did also fill out a survey that was sent in an email, but sadly I failed to personally name the two gentlemen that performed the actual installation. Barrett and Francisco were our guys, and let me tell you, they were outstanding!!! They did Excellent work and were professional as well as efficient and made this a smooth, none evasive process for us. I strongly recommend this company and these installers to anyone in need of windows!!! My husband and I could not be more pleased we chose Andersen for replacing our windows!!!

Claim These Savings
Custom Built In USA
Lead Safe

Since its founding in 1977, the Alliance to Save Energy has been a leader in energy efficiency policy and advocacy. Over the years, the Alliance’s programs and priorities have evolved as U.S. energy efficiency policy has grown.