High-performance, energy-efficient windows have many benefits, from making your home more comfortable to saving on monthly energy costs. If you’re investing in new windows for your home, make sure to consider their energy performance ratings. These ratings determine how much heat they will gain or lose at certain times of the year.
One of the most important ratings is the solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC). It refers to the amount of solar radiation that passes through your windows.
Why Should You Use SHGC Ratings?
The SHGC is the ratio of solar radiation admitted through your windows. The lower the SHGC rating, the less solar heat it transmits and the greater its shading ability. This means that a window with a high SHGC rating is better at collecting solar heat during the winter while a window with a low SHGC rating is more effective at reducing cooling loads during the summer by blocking the heat from the sun.
By knowing the SHGC rating of your windows, you can choose the ideal window for your home, which often depends on your climate. If you live in a cool climate, for instance, you should choose windows that allow a larger amount of solar heat. This keeps the inside of your home more comfortable and reduces your reliance on your heating system.
What Is the Best Rating for Your Climate?
In cold regions, windows with an SHGC rating in the range of 0.30 to 0.60 can be helpful. During winter months, the solar heat gained can help keep the indoors warmer and more comfortable. On the other hand, homeowners who live in warmer climates should choose windows with an SHGC rating of less than 0.27. Homes in these areas, after all, should be kept cooler for longer periods to ensure greater comfort.
Meanwhile, if you live in a mixed climate, you may need windows with an SHGC rating somewhere in between these ranges. In the Northern and Midwest regions where most homeowners use both heating and cooling, but with the latter being used less often, the windows should have an SHGC rating of less than 0.40. In the Southern and central regions where heating may be used extensively, an SHGC rating of 0.30 or lower is recommended.
If you’re in the market for new windows, get in touch with the pros at Krech Exteriors. Our team of window experts knows the importance of choosing the ideal SHGC rating for your climate. Call us today at (651) 688-6368, or fill out our online contact form to request an estimate. We proudly serve homeowners in Minneapolis and St. Paul.