Bedrooms have a different set of requirements when it comes to what windows should be installed in it. Replacement window company Renewal by Andersen® of Eastern NY shares an in-depth look at the considerations you need to make when choosing bedroom windows.
How to Choose New Bedroom Windows
As a part of your home’s exterior, your new windows need to have proper insulation. Traditional windows are equipped with single pane glazing. Since glass is a naturally-conductive material, and that it occupies a large portion of the window area, traditional windows allow heat to easily pass through. Therefore, uninsulated windows cause heat loss during winter and heat gain during summer, which contributes to your utility bill costs.
Renewal by Andersen replacement windows are equipped with energy-efficient components such as Fibrex® material frames and High Performance™ Low-E4® glass. Both components are proven to reduce heat conduction, which helps you save on energy costs and make your bedroom more comfortable. Choose replacement windows that have low U-Factor or high R-Value.
Another benefit of proper insulation is that it helps control sound between interior and exterior spaces. If you work in the night shift and need to catch some sleep during the day, then you need windows that mute sounds from the curb. The same goes for people who need a quiet place to work or study. Video content creators and musicians can likewise benefit from a quiet environment when recording audio.
Architectural style can sometimes dictate which window styles and accessories are appropriate for your home. Bedrooms in traditional home styles look best with classic window styles like a double hung window—or a bay window for master bedrooms—complete with Colonial-style grilles. Modern bedrooms, on the other hand, tend to favor slim frames and as big a glass area as possible. Modern master bedrooms tend to have floor-to-ceiling windows that may be mulled with a patio door.
Existing Decor and Color Palette
Existing bedroom decor and wallpaper isn’t always considered as a factor when choosing replacement windows because they’re easily replaceable. However, bedrooms with permanent or durable interior components such as brick and wood trim need to have windows that work with them. The same goes for exterior components such as siding. This is why we offer Renewal by Andersen in different interior and exterior colors, including stainable pine, oak, and maple options for window interiors.
Daylighting is the practice of using natural light as the primary source of daytime indoor illumination. This is achieved through the strategic placement of windows that allow lots of natural light. In addition to helping make your bedroom look spacious, daylighting has actual health benefits. It promotes healthy amounts of sleep by helping regulate your circadian rhythm (the “body clock”) with exposure to daytime-nighttime cycles. Several studies conducted over the decades also point to significant improvement in concentration, cognitive functions, and, in one particular study, patient recovery rates.
South- and west-facing windows provide the best illumination, with the latter providing the most amount of direct sunlight. A capable window contractor can survey the bedrooms in your home and help you determine the right windows that allow maximum daylighting.
If you prefer the level of illumination provided by west-facing windows but are worried about the heat, you’ll be glad to know that our glass packages feature low-emissivity (Low-E) coatings. It selectively blocks solar heat and UV rays, but not visible light. We offer glass packages that have low Solar Heat Gain Coefficient and high Visible Transmittance values that let you gain the full benefits of daylighting.
Always choose the window with the largest glass area and the slimmest frame possible. While picture windows are the first thing that comes to mind, your bedroom will require ventilation. Therefore, styles like casement windows, bay windows with minimal grilles, or even custom windows are ideal for rooms with a view.
Local Building Codes
Regardless of your final bedroom window choices, they have to conform to local building codes. International building codes require egress windows to be at least 24 inches tall and 20 inches wide and at most 44 inches from the ground. The window should have a net clear opening of 5 square feet.
Additionally, the New Jersey building code requires first-floor egress windows that are 36 inches high and 48 inches wide, with a net clear opening of 20 by 20 inches. All egress windows on all upper stories should be 36 inches high and 54 inches wide, with a net clear opening of 20 by 24 inches. The window should be 44 inches from the floor maximum. You don’t have to memorize all of this, of course. A certified window replacement company like us will make sure your new windows are code-compliant.
About Energy Performance Labels
Earlier in this blog, we have been making references to things such as U-Factor and Solar Heat Gain Coefficient. These are found on the energy performance labels affixed on replacement windows and patio doors. The National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) rates these products so homeowners can choose the right windows at point of purchase. Here is a summary of these ratings:
- U-Factor (or U-Value) — Measures how well a product can keep heat from escaping from a room. Values fall between 0.20 and 1.20. The lower the value, the better insulation it has. Note that some product literature discussing energy saving windows may substitute R-Value, which measures the amount of heat that goes through a product. Therefore, a window with a low U-Factor will have a correspondingly high R-Value.
- Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) — Measures resistance to unwanted heat gain, with values ranging from 0.0 to 1.0. The lower the value, the better the insulation.
- Visible Transmittance (VT) — Measures how well the product is at letting natural light through, with values ranging from 0.0 to 1.0. Windows optimized for daylighting should have high VT values. Conversely, tinted windows generally have low VT values.
- Air Leakage — Measures the amount of air that will enter a room through the product. Values range from 0.1 to 0.3. Lower values mean a tighter seal, therefore the less chances of having drafts in the winter. Casement windows tend to have low Air Leakage values because the sashes sit flush on the frame.
Lastly, it should be noted that window performance depends on the quality of installation. Even the best-rated replacement windows won’t perform as expected if the windows are not installed properly. This is why Renewal by Andersen makes significant effort in choosing, training, and certifying our installers. We’re confident of their capability to deliver on our promises that their installation work is covered by a two-year limited warranty.