In decades past, it was regular practice to have a single pane of glass in your windows; nowadays, a double or triple-pane window is the standard.
Did you know that not all windows are created equally? There are virtually countless options when shopping for windows for your property, which can feel stressful. Choices include vinyl, aluminum, casement, sliding, argon gas-filled, krypton, and more! If you’re in the market for new windows, it’s important to understand your options and have all of the information.
So, to make it easier on you, we’re taking a deep dive into the triple pane window, comparing and contrasting its counterparts, looking at the advantages and disadvantages, and more.
Continue reading to learn more about triple pane windows below.
What is a Triple Pane Window?
Before triple-pane windows were single-pane glass windows; they are commonly found in old properties. Glass is a highly emissive material, meaning it allows heat to transfer through easily, making them poor insulators. While they contribute to the overall character and style of an old home and are budget-friendly, they are poor boise blockers and end up being more expensive in the long run.
Because single-pane windows didn’t offer much protection in terms of insulation — and security — builders and manufacturers worked to make significant improvements in the world of windows. Years down the line, they started to manufacture double-pane windows that feature two panes of glass that vastly improved security and energy efficiency issues. Today, double-pane glass windows are standard. But it didn’t stop there: triple pane windows.
So, triple pane windows vs. double, what’s the deal?
The triple-pane window is an exclusive upgrade from the double-pane window. Instead of two glass panes and a single spacer, these insulated glazing units (IGUs) feature three panes of glass and two spacers. Triple-pane glass windows have an insulating air or gas, often krypton gas, between each pane (in the spacers).
Triple-Pane Windows vs. Double-Pane Windows
Windows that feature two panes of glass are usually called double-pane windows but can also be called IGUs (like triple-pane windows) or double-glazed windows. Double panes have two panes of glass that have one space of insulating air or gas, unlike the two spacers of a triple-pane window. The gas is usually argon or krypton, similar to triple-pane windows.
Both types of IGU windows are extremely durable and work to protect your home or commercial space from the hot summer months. They both work to keep heated air inside your property. While double-pane glass windows are more expensive than single-pane windows, they are not as much of an investment as triple-glass windows.
There are many perks to outfitting your home with double-pane windows:
- Improved Insulators — Double-pane windows are much better insulators than single-pane windows, saving you a significant amount of money in the long run.
- Better Noise Reduction — If the noise level is a concern for you, double-pane windows are the industry standard and help to help block out outside noise.
- Increase Home Value — Double pane windows are a great investment and improve home resale value. In fact, most homebuyers expect windows to be upgraded to double panes before making a purchase.
Triple-pane windows are definitely an investment, but they come with a lot of advantages. These perks are actually quite similar to double-pane windows, but they take noise and temperature insulation and energy efficiency to a whole other level. Another enticing bonus of the triple pane option is that they are still functional even when one pane works. If one pane is damaged or cracks, the window can still function as a double-paned window with a single spacer.
However, to get the most out of triple pane windows’ insulating and energy efficiency properties and ensure your IGU windows are a worthwhile investment, it is essential to make sure the rest of your home is properly insulated and sealed. Moreover, you’ll need to replace all of your windows; otherwise, you won’t see the same level of value if you only do single replacements (that goes for double-pane windows, too).
Which Windows Are Best For My Property? Triple Pane Windows vs. Double
This probably goes without saying, but single-pane windows are not ideal for home or commercial properties. Sure, they can be used for your shed or garage, but for living spaces, they are not safe, durable, or efficient and do nothing to block out outside sound or seasonal temperatures.
Since single-pane windows are prone to moisture and air leaks and have the highest rate of heat losses and gains, we do not suggest using these windows for your property, especially in Northern Utah.
As mentioned, double-pane windows are the current industry standard and are the most popular choice among property owners. These windows perform very well when it comes to insulation, durability, and overall window technologies. A double-pane glass window has four surfaces to work with, so there are plenty of coating options to choose from. The space between each pane can be filled with various types of gas fills, like xenon, krypton, or argon.
These noble gases have a higher density than air, resulting in less energy loss and vastly improved insulation. Each of these fantastic features combined together results in a noticeable difference and huge savings in your energy expenses.
There’s no doubt that these perks of a double-pane window are exciting to any homeowner. But if you want to take insulation improvements and energy savings to the next level, property owners should look into triple-pane glass windows.
A triple-pane window has six total surfaces and features two insulating spaces, resulting in even better security, condensation control, insulation, and soundproofing. Even if it’s hot outside, the interior surface of a triple-pane window will never be hot or cold to the touch.
Triple-pane windows increase the U-Factor of double-pane windows and clear windows by more than 50%. This improvement is thanks to the combination of an additional pane of glass, additional glass surfaces to apply a Low-E coating technology to, and multiple cavities containing insulating layers of noble gasses.
Triple-pane windows work best for properties in climates that experience extreme temperatures. Whether you live in an area that requires more heating or cooling for your property, the key to triple-pane glass windows is stopping heat flow. Triple pane windows can make being inside a lot more comfortable, despite what is happening outside.
In climates where heating is necessary, triple-pane windows maintain more energy and warmth. In contrast, properties that need cooling, triple pane windows keep more of the heat in and cold outdoor temperatures out. Utahns are used to both weather extremes, especially in Northern Utah along the Wasatch Front, making these windows an even better investment since the benefits can be experienced year-round.
The Advantages of Triple Pane Windows
There are many reasons why a property owner would want to choose to upgrade their windows to a triple pane option. Here are some of the perks of adding these windows to your property:
- Improved Insulation — The U-factor on triple-pane windows is about 20 to 30 percent better than that of double-pane units. These windows also have improved solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) ratings, especially when you opt to add Low-E coatings on two surfaces.
- Better Sound Proofing — If noise pollution is a major issue or concern in your area, this is where the triple-pane window really starts to edge out the competition. Make sure to check the sound transmission coefficient rating, if it’s available, on triple pane options. Laminated coatings can also help cut down on unwanted exterior noise.
- Superior Security — More panes of glass mean more work for an intruder trying to break in, making a triple-pane window three times more difficult. This can be a major deterrent because breaking through a triple-pane window makes more noise, causes a bigger commotion, and takes longer — all of which mean trespassers are more likely to draw attention to themselves.
- Functional Even If One Pane Breaks — If one pane of the three panes breaks or is otherwise damaged, it’s okay! Property owners will still have a “double-paned window” that still has a single layer of insulating gasses, essentially!
The Few Disadvantages of a Triple-Pane Window
While there are many benefits of triple-glazed windows, there are some disadvantages, such as:
- Cost — Triple pane windows feature additional materials and have a more expensive inert gas, resulting in a higher cost. The price difference can be significant compared to the standard double-pane windows found in properties. Decisions to upgrade usually come down to three things: the energy efficiency of your current windows, the features you want for your replacement windows, and the savings you will experience once the new windows are installed.
- Energy Savings — Yes, triple-pane windows are obviously more efficient than single-pane windows and even double-pane units. However, in climates that are more mild, unlike Utah, property owners may not experience much of a difference. They may only see savings of two to three percent on their energy bills. As a result, these homeowners may find that it takes a lot longer to recoup the original cost of their upgraded windows, even a decade or two.
So, Are Triple Pane Windows Worth It?
The answer to this question depends on which benefits are most important to the property owner. Certainly, these windows perform better and give homeowners slightly higher energy savings. But the more significant savings come from colder, more extreme climates, like properties in Northern Utah along the Wasatch Front.
Interested in a Triple Pane Window Home? Contact Mountain State Windows & Siding Today!
If it is time to upgrade the windows in your home or commercial space, consider a triple-pane window option. The professionals at Mountain State Windows & Siding can help you decide what is best for your property.
There’s no denying that even the best triple-pane windows are only as good as the installation behind them. For this exact reason, the trusted and experienced team at Mountain State Windows & Siding is dedicated to making your next window upgrade and installation project the best property improvement project you’ve ever embarked upon.
In our plentiful years of service, we have come to learn that the best quality experiences lie in the details, large or small. We put countless hours of craftsmanship and hard work into our projects, but without the proper knowledge, tools, experience, and time, we would be much.
Thankfully, our professional technicians have years of experience under their belts and are ready to take on any home renovation project, large or small, throughout the Wasatch Front. Whether you are upgrading the windows in your current property or are building a brand new home and need windows installed, our crew is here to help you. When you choose Mountain States, you know you are working with the best of the best.
Our skilled team is dedicated to providing you with transparent and professional service. We are always upfront with our clients about our processes and all accompanying costs. We also know just how important money is and are dedicated to staying within your outlined budget.
You can rest assured that your new windows from Mountain States are sure to boost your home’s curb appeal and value, let natural light seep in, keep unwanted people, debris, and critters out, and ensure that your property is well-insulated to keep your and your family comfortable all year long, regardless of the weather outside.
If you live in Salt Lake City, Springville, Provo, West Jordan, Lehi, Park City, or a surrounding area along the Wasatch Front, contact our team at Mountain States Window & Siding today! If you are considering a home renovation project, make sure to check out Mountain States Kitchen & Bath for all of your bathroom and kitchen remodeling needs!