How Do Thermally Broken Windows Work

How Do Thermally Broken Windows Work

Do you currently have aluminum windows? Do they frequently look foggy or collect condensation? Is it a single-pane window or double-window? New aluminum windows have many benefits but older aluminum windows are known for foggy glass and condensation. What makes newer aluminum windows so good? Modern aluminum windows are designed with thermal breaks. We’ll discuss how thermally broken windows work and why they’re valuable in this post.

Read on if you are deciding between new aluminum windows or another window material.

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How Do Thermally Broken Windows Work?

The term ‘thermally broken’ is used in the window and door manufacturing industry to describe a window's construction. It means that you manufacture the aluminum frame to have an interior and exterior side joined by barrier. The barrier helps inhibit conductive thermal energy loss.

Thermal breaks are part of the window frame but they also affect how temperature transfers to other parts of the window, like the glass. Most efforts to improve energy efficiency have to do with the glass because the glass makes up the biggest surface of the window and is not naturally energy efficient; thermal breaks are one of the few methods of improving efficiency that doesn’t have to do directly with the glass.

How are thermal breaks made?

A thermally broken frame will have a reinforced polyamide strip made from some kind of non-metallic composite material. Manufacturers will fix the strip between the interior and exterior aluminum profile of the frame to create an insulated barrier. The material for the strip will inherently have a low thermal conductivity to minimize the transfer of heat and cold through the window frame. It can have a hugely significant impact on energy transfer compared to standard wood or aluminum frame.

Need some statistics↗ to understand the effectiveness of these windows for your home? Thermal windows stop the loss of heat during the winter. In old windows, as much as 49% of the heat lost from a house during the winter escapes through the windows. Additionally, there is as much as 87% of the heat gained from the outside comes in through cold windows.

Since thermal windows focus on reducing heat loss in colder climates and reducing heat gain in hotter climates, there are additional options you can get in most thermal windows. You can get double-glazed windows to go inside these frames to lose even less heat. Both of these options combined help to lower the overall U-value of the window.

If you are in the market for aluminum windows and the windows you're being offered don't have a thermal break, run away and find a better option immediately. All aluminum windows no matter where you live should have a thermal break.

Do Thermally Broken Windows Stop Condensation?

Thermally broken windows can help prevent condensation. Condensation happens when the room temperature is different from the interior surface of the windows. Due to the presence of the reinforced polyamide strip, the interior of the window will be very close to room temperature. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that your window won’t experience at least a little bit of condensation. Newly installed windows can also experience condensation on the glass, especially if installed during cold-weather seasons. Condensation doesn’t necessarily mean there is a problem with the window but excessive condensation and condensation that turns into ice buildup can lead to big problems.

Are Thermally Broken Windows Limited in Operational Styles?

The biggest challenge you will face will be locating the manufacturer that creates thermally broken windows in the style window you need. Just kidding, that shouldn’t be a challenge at all. Thermally broken windows should be easily found in all of the most common operational styles including:

  • Single and double-hung
  • Sliding windows
  • Casement windows
  • Awning windows
  • Picture windows

You can also request specially shaped windows from certain thermally broken window manufacturers. 

Are Thermally Broken Windows Worth It In Dallas

If you consider thermally broken windows for a home in the Dallas, Texas area, you will be happy to know that they are still considered worth it. There are even manufacturers local to the area that craft them in a way particularly suitable for the Dallas area.

Since Dallas is such a hot area, thermally broken windows are a recommended choice for the southern and western faces of your home. If you get a lot of sun, you will appreciate these effects on your air conditioning and energy bills. Although people usually think of insulation as a helpful feature in cold areas, the protection from the sun and the heat can be very helpful.

If you are still trying to figure out whether you should invest in thermally broken windows for your Texas home, talk to window and door experts at Brennan Corp.


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