Energy Efficient Windows
Good Window Design & The Importance of Double Glazing
Is Double Glazing Worth The Money?
Simone Schenkel of Gruen Eco Design
IS double glazing worth the money you invest? The answer is YES, but ONLY if it is installed correctly, without a cold bridge (thermal bridge). A window or a door is essentially a hole in the wall and responsible for most of the unwanted heat loss or gain.
Windows are essential for a house and the comfort and well-being of its inhabitants, as they let natural light and fresh air into the building and enable views. Appropriate window design, size, location and glazing treatment, combined with shading and internal covers, can significantly reduce the energy required for heating and cooling. Maximum solar access for north-facing windows can reduce winter heating bills up to 25%. External shading can block up to 80% of summer heat gain through windows. Double glazing and internal coverings can reduce heat loss in winter up to 40%.
Glass is the potential weak point of a building in terms of energy efficiency. A single glazed window can gain or lose up to ten times more heat than an insulated wall.
Double Glazing Popular in Tasmanian Energy Efficiency Scheme
Tasmanians who want double glazing are flocking to a new Tasmanian Government Scheme which makes interest-free loans available for the purchase of energy-saving products. These include heat pumps, solar panels, solar hot water double glazing, home insulation, block out blinds and curtains, and double glazing. The Scheme has also been supported by Sustainable Living Tasmania, the TCCI, the Small Business Council of Tasmania, the Property Council and the Tasmanian Renewable Energy Alliance.
The Scheme is proving very popular. According to the Minister for Energy, Matthew Groom, “the people have spoken on the Government’s energy efficiency loans scheme, with a massive influx of applications from households and businesses.”
The $10 million TEELS scheme announced in last year’s state budget, and was only recently opened for applications. The applications have flooded in. In the first two weeks, there have been over 1300 applications, worth $10,200,000. As only $10,000,000 was allocated to the scheme over two years, NOW would be a good time for anyone wanting to apply, to get in.
Already over 300 applications have come from Hobart and the rest of Tasmania for loans to buy double glazing. As usual in these schemes, there doesn’t appear to be any control over where customers source their products (think of the Federal Insulation fiasco). Customers should only buy quality products from reputable, well-established retailers. See our Hobart Double Glazing page for some useful information.
Learn more about the Scheme here, and make an Application here. Good luck!
NZ Labour Promises $1.2billion for Double Glazing & Warm Homes
Double glazing has hit the headlines in New Zealand. Gearing up for the coming election, the New Zealand Labour Party has announced a policy to make $1.2billion available to make 600,000 Kiwi homes “warm and dry”.
Homeowners will be able to claim up to $2000 per home, which can be used to subsidise the double-glazing of windows, insulation, or a heating system.
The program will run for 10 years, and will be available to 600,000 homes at a cost of $1.2billion – which is the exact same figure the Party estimates will come in from closing a tax loophole that favours property investors.
That ‘loophole’ is a familiar one to Australians. It’s Negative gearing. So has NZ Labour got it right? Will cutting out Negative Gearing help improve housing affordability, by removing subsidies for investors vs first home buyers? Will spending the money on double glazing, insulation and more efficient heating systems help 600,000 households enjoy a more comfortable life? Needless to say, more energy efficient homes also reduce the national and personal carbon footprint, and cut the household energy bills.
Scott Morrison and his Coalition Government could do much worse than support measures to increase the uptake of double glazing. Geneva didn’t muck around- they mandated double glazing!