The Future of Efficient Windows
Glass is such a highly conductive material that windows can become ‘thermal holes’ if not treated properly. Studies show that as much as 87% of heat entering a typical home is through windows, and up to 40% of a typical home's energy can be lost through the incorrect use of windows.
From purchasing high performing window units, to applying window film or hanging curtains – the solutions vary greatly in terms of efficacy, cost and aesthetic appeal.
An independent energy efficiency study released earlier this year in the US states that “Window films are a more cost effective retrofit opportunity for homes than other measures…especially in homes with single pane glass.”1
Some films offer year-round protection in any climate, retaining heat in winter and rejecting it in summer. Solar control films can reduce up to 99% UV radiation, 79% total solar energy and 90% glare "2.
Each film has its own energy claims. The launch of the independent Window Energy Rating Scheme (WERS) For Film has made the selection process easier for homeowners. Through this process films are rated for their potential energy impact on a home, with a star rating just like the energy star stickers we see on whitegoods.
Many installers across the country have attained WERS For Film accreditation, making it easier to identify a professional installer trained to give advice on the most suitable film for each application.
Once the film is applied the accredited installer can issue a WERS For Film certificate, which will aid the energy rating if the home owner wants to sell their home in the future. In many cases, this certificate will help increase the selling price of the property.
Once Mandatory Disclosure is introduced next year an energy rating will be a requirement when selling or leasing a home. Mandatory Disclosure is already underway in Canberra where anecdotal evidence suggests each energy star a house receives in an energy assessment could add as much as $15,000 to the value of the home.
The HIA has thrown its support behind WERS recently, recommending to its members to use WERS certified products for assurance of energy claims"3.
President of the Window Film Association of Australia and New Zealand (WFAANZ), Michael Miller, comments, “Australian case studies show that air conditioning usage has been reduced by as much as 30% after the application of window film. The benefits of film can be compared to those offered by new high performing, low E windows. For the best advice, talk to a professional window film installer who has been accredited in WERS For Film.”
Modern films come in a variety of shades, colours and performance levels, so windows don’t have to be darker to be protected. The best products are guaranteed to survive differing climates, with scratch resistant coatings for protection and metallic layers for colour stability. Film is easily installed to the interior glass surface, in less than an hour a professional installer can apply film to one standard window.
For more information about window film please visit www.wfaanz.org.au.
"1 Energy Analysis for Window Films Applications in New and Existing Homes and Offices©, pp 19, independent study prepared by CONSOL for the International Window Film Association, February 7 2012. A link to the report can be found at www.wfaanz.org.au/Type
"2 Different films have different benefits. Home owners should discuss their needs with an installer for a recommendation of the most suitable product for their requirements
"3 HIA Website
For further information, images or an interview please contact:
WFAANZ PR Manager
0413 626 365
02 9401 0222