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Should You Get Double-Pane Or Impact Windows?

by Tara Pena

When selecting windows, you need to think about things beyond the aesthetics of how they will look on your home. You may need them to be strong enough to resist the high winds caused by storms, or help your home be energy efficient. Either situation will require you to make an upgrade beyond a single-pane glass window when you go to purchase them. You may be wondering if an impact window is necessary, or if you can stick with a double-pane window with an extra layer of glass in it. Here is a breakdown of both window types, which will help you determine which is best for you.

Impact Windows

An impact window may be designed to withstand the high winds of living in a hurricane zone, but they also use multiple panes of glass that will help the window be more energy efficient as well. Impact windows work by placing a film on the glass that is shatter-resistant, which will help prevent the glass from flying into your home during a storm. It works much like the windshield in your car. The aluminum frame is also reinforced, which helps give it some extra stability.  Because of these upgrades, you can expect an impact window to cost more than a double-pane glass window.

The glass can be placed in doors, standard windows, skylights, and even a sliding patio door. The goal of the window is not to prevent the glass from being damaged, but to withstand strong impacts so that the winds do not ravage the inside of your home and create more damage.

Double Pane Windows

A double-pane glass window is designed to be energy efficienct, not withstand impacts. This is true of triple-pane windows as well, because the extra layer of glass does not necessarily mean it will provide more protection. You should only get a double-pane window when you do not live in a hurricane zone.

The benefits of using two panes of glass is that it will contain the heated air within your home, often referred to as the U-factor. It also prevents solar heat gain, which is from the heat outside your home. When shopping for double pane glass windows, you want to find one that has a low U-factor and a high solar heat gain coefficient for maximum energy efficiency.

Now that you know the differences between these two windows, you should know which one is best for your specific needs. If you have questions about either type of window, contract a window installation contractor like Gulf Coast Builders Inc or another company in your area for help.