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Glazing, Window Film, and Improving Building Energy Efficiency

By December 6, 2021July 8th, 2022Energy Efficiency, Solar Window Film, Window Film
Building with sun reflecting off of its glazing showing the importance of building energy efficiency

Are you looking to save money, increase your building’s energy efficiency, and increase the ROI of your energy efficiency investments? Considering your windows might be just what you are looking for. It’s important to know the different kinds of glazing options available— as well as price points— so that you can maximize the energy performance of your space.

What is glazing performance and how is it measured?

Glazing performance is determined by its Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC – which is the solar radiative heat gain), U-Value (conductive heat loss or gain) and emissivity (non-solar radiative heat loss).  Windows typically lose and gain heat by convection, conduction, air leakage, and radiation. Glazing allows for important and healthy connection to outside spaces but can be a source of unwanted heat gain and loss.

What is the cost difference between the different glazing measures?

Building energy efficiency can be costly. Thankfully there are different types of glazing performance options that allow you to determine what works best for you and your business.

Single Glazing

Single Glazing—single-pane windows— ranges anywhere from $3 per square foot and, after labor, the cost to replace a single pane is around $50-$75.

  1. Clear glass transfers the highest amount of energy (heat loss/gain) and the highest transmission of daylight.
  2. Tinted glass helps reduce solar heat gain, however it also reduces visible light. This tinted option does not have an effect on the U-Factor but can reduce heat gain.

Double Glazing

Double Glazing’s average replacement cost is around $385-$850 per window, while installation costs anywhere between $150-$350.

  1. The clear glazed unit has two layers of glass separated by an air gap. The extra layer of glass and the gap can improve U-Value by up to 50% compared to single glazed units due to its insulating properties.
  2. Tinted glass also has two layers of glass separated by an air gap to help with insulation. The tint helps reduce the visible light transmission compared to clear glass.

Triple Glazing

Triple Glazing installation is around $550-$1,085 per window plus labor costs.

  1. Triple Glazing is an improvement over Double Glazing by adding another glass layer and another gap which further improves U-Value.
  2. Like Double Glazing, Triple Glazing can also have coatings that further improve SHGC and emissivity.

As you can see, glazing can be incredibly expensive, particularly if you are replacing windows for an entire building.

How does glazing performance affect your budget and your energy consumption?

Just like anything, there are different levels of performance based on the number of glazing layers there are. The Low-E Glazing, for example, can reduce energy loss by 30-50% compared to a regular single-paned window. Glazing allows you to maximize your building energy efficiency within your space, but the upfront cost and occupant disruption of replacing all your building’s windows can quickly put window replacement ROI out of reach.

Can I save energy without buying new windows?

Yes! Here at NGS, we provide cost-effective technology solutions through window film for you and your business. You won’t have to worry about buying or replacing any windows, we simply apply the film to your already existing windows. Take a glance at the products we offer and see just how easy and effective our products are.

  • 3M™ All Season Window Film– Providing benefits throughout the year, the insulation keeps the building warm in the winter while blocking UV rays during the summer for a cooler interior and an energy-saving building. These benefits will have a potential payback within three years.
  • 3M™ Sun Control Window Film Prestige Series– This prestige window film blocks up to 97% of the sun’s infrared radiation and 60% of the heat coming through your windows. 3M™ sets itself apart by using hundreds of layers of film to block dangerous rays, which will increase performance as the sun’s angle increases. 3M™ also offers a comprehensive 15-year warranty when professionally installed on a commercial building.
  • 3M™ Sun Control Window Film Traditional Series– Improve the comfort of your office/home while increasing energy savings with this film. It reduces the amount of heat and solar energy up to 79% and blocks 99% of UV Rays that come through the window. With three different tint levels, there are options to tailor it to your business.
  • 3M™ Thinsulate™ Window Film Climate Control Series– This nearly invisible form of insulation is close to adding an extra pane of glass to your window— at a fraction of the cost— improving energy efficiency throughout the year. During the winter, it helps keep the heat in and block the cold outside air. It also will block the sun’s heat in the summer, allowing you to keep that AC bill down. A typical single-pane window becomes close to that of a double-pane window, and a double-pane close to that of a triple-pane.
  • 3M™ Sun Control Window Film Prestige Exterior Series– This film performs exceptionally well when compared to interior films on existing dual pane tinted or higher performing glazing systems. Prestige Exterior blocks up to 97% of the sun’s infrared radiation before it even passes through the glass.  . It also significantly blocks the harmful UV rays that contribute to fading and weathering of interior finishes and furnishings. It also comes with a comprehensive warranty when applied professionally.
  • 3M™ Sun Control Window Film Ceramic Series– The advanced ceramics will give your windows the long-lasting clarity, performance, and neutral color you need to enhance appearance and energy efficiency of a commercial building. Rejecting up to 80% of infrared light and 59% of the heat coming through the windows— ceramic window film is a great option for many applications. Blocking out 99% of harmful UV rays, it will also reduce fading, increasing the lifespan of your furnishings and finishes. This film also comes with a comprehensive warranty when applied professionally.

If you like what you saw, check out our other energy-saving window films:

Window film installation from NGS is a great investment to save money on utility bills and to increase building energy efficiency. This cost-effective solution will provide you with energy efficiency and comfort without losing the healthy views of the outdoor spaces. Learn more about our company and the other products that we offer, or join an upcoming webinar about window film and building energy efficiency in the link below.

Improve Energy Efficiency and Security with Sun Control Window Films
Hosted by  James Beale
Learn how sun control window films help improve building energy efficiency, reduce costs, improve occupant comfort, and increase security.


Photo by Stijn on Unsplash

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