Design Considerations

Windows were once considered a weak link in any home’s ability to shield its residents from weather. Design principles called for balancing comfort and energy efficiency with the three traditional functions of windows: views, natural light, and air flow. Today, however, windows are no longer a weak link. Efficient ones help to protect interiors from weather, and also offer various secondary benefits. These basic design tips will help you get the most from your windows in each of their three traditional functions:

These guides examine the energy use impacts of new windows for homes in hot, mixed, and cold climates. They show the impact of orientation, window area, and shading. The energy use has been calculated for various window design variations including 5 orientations (equal, north, east, south, and west), 3 glazing areas, 20 glazing types, and 5 shading conditions.

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provides unbiased information and education to the public on the energy efficiency, technical, and human considerations that influence window selection and use. The EWC collaborates with allied organizations, educational institutions, and government agencies that promote energy efficiency in residential windows. We do not sell, service, install, or recommend products, or endorse manufacturers. Descriptions and specifications of the products in the Window Selection Tool are provided by the manufacturer. The EWC is not liable for any manufacturing defects or inaccurate product descriptions and specifications and does not guarantee the performance of NFRC-certified windows, doors, and skylights.

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National Fenestration Rating Council
6305 Ivy Lane, Suite 410
Greenbelt, MD 20770
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