With summer right around the corner, now is an especially prudent time to consider the importance of insulation — and not just when it comes to your attic and walls. Your choice of windows can have a huge impact on your home’s insulation. So, if you’re planning to purchase replacement windows, take some time to explore the benefits of insulated windows. There are a variety of types of insulated windows, but today we’re going to focus on those that include a thermal break. What is a thermal break in a window? Scroll down to find out.
What Is a Thermal Break in a Window?
So, what is a thermal break in a window?
Also known as a thermal barrier, a thermal break is a piece of material with low thermal conductivity that is placed in an extrusion of a window frame to prevent the flow of thermal energy. Thermal breaks can be found in frames made of various materials, but they’re most commonly found in aluminum window frames. A window may include one or more thermal breaks to prevent heat transference.
How do thermal breaks work?
In thermally broken window construction, the interior and exterior sides are joined by an insulated barrier that is designed to inhibit conductive thermal energy loss. This means that heat and cold can’t easily travel through the (often aluminum) window frame. So, in summer, a thermal break can prevent the blazing heat from venturing into your home. And in winter, a thermal break will prevent the warm air inside your home from escaping.
Are thermal breaks effective?
Absolutely. If you’re in the market for aluminum windows, consider a thermal break a necessity. Whether you live in a warmer climate, a cooler climate, or a climate with both extremes, they’ll make a huge difference in your home’s energy efficiency.
But of course, a window’s insulation is just one factor that impacts its thermal performance. You also have to consider the interior conditions of the building, the external weather, the frame material, the choice of glass and glazing, the window installation, and more. Most efforts to improve a window’s energy efficiency focus on the glass because it makes up such a large portion of the window. For example, you may wish to combine thermally broken frames with double-glazed windows to prevent the flow of thermal energy further, lowering the window’s overall U-value.
Do thermal breaks help with condensation?
Yes! Condensation occurs when your room’s temperature doesn’t match the interior surface of your windows. When your windows include a thermal break, the exterior temperature won’t be able to transfer to the interior of your windows as easily. This means that your windows’ interior temperature will be closer to your home’s interior temperature.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that condensation will be completely eliminated. A small amount of interior condensation is normal. In addition, remember that condensation on the outside of windows is a good sign, as it shows that your windows are sealing out the outdoor temperature and humidity.
What window styles are available with thermal breaks?
All common window styles are available with thermal breaks: single-hung, double-hung, casement, awning, picture, and more. You shouldn’t have any trouble finding an environmentally efficient, thermally broken window that fits your needs.
Are you looking for high-quality aluminum windows? Check out American Window Company. Since 1999, we have offered an extensive collection of high-quality windows, doors, shutters, blinds, and more. We are a small, family-owned business that is committed to providing excellent workmanship and on-time installation. In addition, we are properly licensed and insured to protect our employees and provide our customers with peace of mind. For a free estimate or more information about our products and services, please contact us today.