Dayle Laing

The ‘coolest shade of green’ is the sustainable choice. Dayle Laing is a Professional Speaker and Author who uses her experience and training as an educator, a designer and a LEED Accredited Professional to empower Conscious Consumers to make practical yet beautiful choices for sustainable living, reducing their carbon footprint while enhancing their body, mind & spirit.

inline fiberglass window installation 500Embarking on window replacement this season?

What are the critical points you need to know for a successful purchase decision and installation? Learn from my recent experience.

Natural Resources Canada in their 2003 \"Consumer\'s Guide to Buying Energy-Efficient Windows and Doors\" said that the “best energy performance in window frames has been achieved using a fibreglass frame with foam insulation in the frame cavities”.

Our expensive wood framed windows rotted after only 15 years, and our Energy Audit reinforced what we already knew. The time had come.


installing casement unit 300 I researched fibreglass frame window manufacturers, and selected Inline Fiberglass Ltd. based on local manufacturing, esthetic and performance features, and price.

Design considerations

Consider style and operation. Does your window need to open or can it be fixed? Fixed as you might expect, provides slightly better performance ratings. Casement windows opening in the direction of the prevailing winds catch breezes allowing cooling and ventilation without air conditioning. Unless you are living in a smoggy area, it is more pleasant to be able to open windows.

What do the windows look like from the exterior? Is a casement style in better keeping with your façade or would double-hung look better? Casement windows are easier to operate and from most companies, provide a tighter seal for better performance. I selected some casement and some fixed for both performance and appearance.

What colour should the frame exterior be? Does the choice look well with the building façade? Is it too bland, or does it have so much contrast that the windows dominate? If you pick white, does it clash with ivory soffits and eaves troughs? Inline offers custom colours, as well as the standard brown that was perfect for our look.

oak wood interior finish 300What colour of interior options are available? I wanted brown for the exterior and white for the interior. Should I wish to change this in the future, the frame is paintable. For the formal living room, I wanted the oak wood interior finish option, which was not available from other manufacturers that I checked. The oak stained and sealed beautifully.

Performance Considerations

If I were building a new house, I would not hesitate to triple-glaze the windows. Since the energy efficiency of our 30 year old house is limited by the existing wall insulation, the extra expense of triple versus double glazing did not make sense. I selected double glazed, low E, argon filled windows, as I discussed in greater detail in my previous article on green window architecture.

energy star window 300All the windows installed were Energy Star® rated, and Natural Resources Canada states that models for your zone will “reduce your home energy costs by 7 to 12 percent”. In the Toronto area, Zone B has a maximum U-factor of .28 (equivalent to R3.6). Our windows exceeded the standard with a U-factor of .26 (R3.9).

The Installation

The installers moved quickly from room to room, using a crowbar and a reciprocating saw to neatly remove the old windows. In no time, they were installing and leveling the new units as they went.

interior caulking 300Most important was the attention to caulking, both interior and exterior. Polyurethane spray foam is the best option available now. By selecting a slightly wider casement moulding trim, wall touch-up painting was kept to a minimum.

Overall, a positive experience and we look forward to completing the other side of the house. Let the energy savings start!

For more information or to book Dayle for seminars on green windows, please contact the office at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 905-846-3221.

 

Comments (3)

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Thanks Dayle for the info. I have vinyl windows that are sliders and was surprised when my audit was done a few years ago and they did not recommend replacement. My place can apparently rate a max of 79 because of style, age, etc and it rated...

Thanks Dayle for the info. I have vinyl windows that are sliders and was surprised when my audit was done a few years ago and they did not recommend replacement. My place can apparently rate a max of 79 because of style, age, etc and it rated 75. I only had to replace my furnace and air conditioner.

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Carrie, the EnerGuide rating for energy-efficient newer homes ranges from 75-79, so that your home falls likely into this category. An energy efficient furnace and air conditioner will create a bigger impact, so that this would have been good...

Carrie, the EnerGuide rating for energy-efficient newer homes ranges from 75-79, so that your home falls likely into this category. An energy efficient furnace and air conditioner will create a bigger impact, so that this would have been good advice. Did you have a follow up audit? How have your energy bills been since? Did the audit show air leakage around the vinyl windows? If you have the opportunity to change your windows, a Green Property Information Statement will highlight the value of your green investment and hopefully provide a better resale price as well as lower operating costs in the meantime.

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New fibreglass framed windows have now been installed on the other side of the house, just in time for a cold winter. We noticed the lack of frost build up from condensation and we no longer get an icy blast when we open the draperies in the...

New fibreglass framed windows have now been installed on the other side of the house, just in time for a cold winter. We noticed the lack of frost build up from condensation and we no longer get an icy blast when we open the draperies in the morning. Energy costs are getting better despite the rising utility prices!

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