There is a quickly emerging and fast-growing new standard in building codes that require structures to use very little energy to address heating and cooling needs. Obviously, the cost of utilities is a drag on many businesses and families so this standard helps to regulate fuels in a way that reduces our need for them—especially the fossil fuels—but also helps to cut down on things like carbon emissions (and greenhouses gases, as a whole).
This new technology is known as Passive House.
How Does Passive House Work?
Passive houses are extremely well-insulated and nearly 100 percent airtight. This means they energy efficient, with heat requirements gained primarily from the sun, satisfied through a process known as passive solar gain. In these homes, some heat can also be stored from the heat dissipation of people and of electrical equipment that might be in use.
Basic Passive House Benefits
As you can imagine, passive houses have many benefits. Here are a few:
- Use as much as 90 percent less energy for heating and cooling purposes than traditional buildings
- Uniform interior temperatures results in regulated comfort
- Impeccable indoor air quality thanks to a constant supply of fresh air
- Lower carbon footprint as a result of lower energy consumption
The Passive House Window
Passive Houses have special windows that help them to achieve and maintain these energy efficiency benchmarks. The minimum/average requirement for energy-efficient windows is a double-glaze pane. Neufenster passive house windows tend to have three panes of glass, which vastly improves the insulation properties.
What To Consider When Choosing Windows For Your Home
Here are a few things to think about when you are shopping for new windows for your home:
- Do your windows meet building code fenestration standards? While you do not always need to meet these standards, you need to check with the appropriate municipalities to verify if you can use the windows you have chosen
- Check window data with your certifier if you are opting for Passive House certification. While the window you choose does not necessarily need to have Passive House certification, you do need to confirm the values
- Energy Performance is the #1 criteria you need to consider, followed closely by acoustic performance, architectural details, material selection, warranty, window mechanism, and the manufacturer or dealer’s support system
- Always look for financial incentives that could help cover the cost of installing your Passive House windows