How important is thermal efficiency when choosing windows for your home?

Quality, security and design are the key factors people consider when choosing doors and windows for their home – but thermal efficiency should also be a priority.

Thermally efficient windows and doors can make a real difference to heating costs especially if replacing old windows, while sustainability will continue to inform the choices made by more and more people – from the cars they drive to the clothes they wear and, of course, how they run their household.

From both a cost and environmental point of view cutting energy use should be a priority. Residential properties play a considerable part in global carbon emissions, and in the UK account for 26 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions. This is largely down to the energy used to heat a home.

As around 18 per cent of heat is lost through windows, investing in solutions that provide better insulation will cut your carbon footprint but also help to save money on energy bills.

What does thermal efficiency mean?

Thermal efficiency in windows is how effective they are at conducting heat. This includes the frames as well as the glazing within them.

Measured in U-values the thermal efficiency rating of windows specifically measures how effective the window as an entire unit is at conducting heat. The lower the U-value the more thermally efficient the product is, so the less heat loss you will see. The cumulative effect of this on heating bills can be considerable.

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Thermal efficiency is so important to reducing energy use that a reduction of U-values has been brought into force to ensure less energy is required to heat homes to comfortable levels. In June 2022, an update to building legislation saw a requirement for windows in new build homes to be rated as 1.4 W/m²K. Further changes to lower that figure are anticipated in 2025 as the Government works towards its target of hitting net zero greenhouse emissions by 2050.

A collective effort in making more sustainable choices in building and updating homes will have a positive impact on cutting carbon emissions to help protect the planet for future generations.

How Reynaers can help to create a thermally efficient home

On a day-to-day basis, thermal efficiency is key to creating a comfortable living environment and saving on heating bills.

The thermal efficiency of doors and windows should be easily accessible information listed in the product specification. Products with a U-value of 1.4 W/m²K meet the latest sustainability criteria and will offer excellent thermal efficiency in the home.

Going beyond that, Reynaers has continued to work to create windows and doors that surpass that requirement, with some products already achieving U-values of 0.8 W/m²K.

Products achieving this level of thermal efficiency offer exceptional sustainability credentials and performance. Designed with ultimate performance in mind from an environmental point of view, many windows and doors systems also include hidden ventilation that allows the house to cool when needed, offering a holistic system.

Reynaers offers a numbers of solutions that achieve u-values as low as 0.8 W/m²K including its MasterPatio sliding door, MasterLine 8 and MasterLine 10 window systems.

Through its membership of BFRC as a manufacturer, Reynaers offers third-party verification of the thermal efficiency of its doors and windows, which is clearly visible through a rainbow rating on the product. This is complemented by a scheme that recognises energy efficient, quality installation.

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Quality counts

To work effectively to minimise heat loss windows should be made with high quality materials and fitted by quality installers. Reynaers at Home connects trusted installers directly with homeowners, offering complete control and visibility throughout the process, while all Reynaers at Home partners must be approved by FENSA or an equivalent body.

This commitment to quality ensures that the highest standards are met at every stage of the process – from designing thermally efficient windows and doors through to installation.

Discover more about Reynaers commitment to sustainability, through its policy Reynaers Act’ and explore the full range of products at Reynaers at Home.

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Need professional advice on design, specification or installation?

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