The tech­nol­ogy of keep­ing Old Man Win­ter at bay

The Glengarry News - Glengarry Supplement - - News -

Glen­garry Win­dows and Doors has a new ad­dress but the pace re­mains the same at the Alexan­dria busi­ness, which moved to County Road 45 in July.

“We are al­ways busy...very, very busy,” says owner Yves Gau­thier.

“We are selling a lot of doors, win­dows, and so­lar­i­ums.” Plus, sales of Traeger wood-fired grills and smok­ers have been “phe­nom­e­nal,” adds Mr. Gau­thier, who is de­scribed as be­ing the area’s lead­ing author­ity in bar­be­cues.

“There are a lot of ren­o­va­tions go­ing on,” adds Mr. Gau­thier, who is also a fu­neral di­rec­tor at Glen­garry Fu­neral Home.

Sav­ing en­ergy is one of the prime rea­sons home own­ers are ea­ger to have new doors and win­dows in­stalled.

All win­dows and doors that are sold by Glen­garry Win­dows and Doors are made in Canada.

Made in Alexan­dria

Some of the more pop­u­lar win­dows are made in Alexan­dria, at KP Win­dows, for­merly known as Far­ley Win­dows.

KP win­dows fea­ture three state-of-the-art tech­nolo­gies, em­ploy­ing nat­u­rally clean glass and air seal­ing tech­nol­ogy.

The re­sult is a win­dow that in­su­lates ef­fi­ciently, and is eas­ier to main­tain.

Mr. Gau­thier stresses that home own­ers ought to be aware of the im­por­tance of trust­ing in­stal­la­tion to pro­fes­sion­als. Cut­ting cor­ners does not cut it, he says.

“Skilled labour is not cheap and cheap labour is not skilled.”

Ed­u­cate your­self

Nat­u­ral Re­sources Canada of­fers ad­vice to peo­ple who are in the mar­ket for new doors and win­dows.

Know your cli­mate zone and ask for prod­ucts that are cer­ti­fied for it. Save even more on en­ergy costs by buy­ing a prod­uct cer­ti­fied for a colder zone than where you live.

Look for the EN­ERGY STAR cer­ti­fied mod­els.

On the eastern and north­ern sides of your house, in­stall win­dows with higher in­su­la­tion val­ues to re­duce heat loss.

Learn more about fac­tors af­fect­ing en­ergy ef­fi­ciency, in­clud­ing ra­di­a­tion, con­duc­tion, con­vec­tion and air leak­age.

Fac­tors af­fect­ing en­ergy ef­fi­ciency

All fen­es­tra­tion prod­ucts ex­pe­ri­ence some heat loss.

Ra­di­a­tion -- heat en­ergy is ab­sorbed by the glass and ra­di­ates to­ward the cooler side.

Con­duc­tion -- heat en­ergy moves through solid ma­te­ri­als that make up the frame, sash or spacer bars.

Con­vec­tion -- heat en­ergy is trans­ferred to the air be­tween and around the glass.

Air leak­age -- heat is trans­ferred to air mov­ing through seals or gaps in the frame.

Win­dows can also gain pas­sive so­lar en­ergy through the glass to help off­set en­ergy costs dur­ing the heat­ing sea­son. This bal­ance is re­flected in the en­ergy-per­for­mance ratings.

Prod­uct type and air leak­age

Win­dows and sky­lights that do not open are more air-tight than ones that do. Hinged win­dows (case­ments, awnings, hop­pers, tilt-turns) are more air-tight than slid­ers. Hinged doors are usu­ally more air-tight than slid­ing doors be­cause they have com­pres­sion seals -- a soft, elas­tic ma­te­rial fills the gap be­tween sash and frame.


Win­dows, doors and sky­lights are avail­able in a wide va­ri­ety of ma­te­ri­als, in­clud­ing alu­minum, steel, fi­bre­glass, vinyl and wood. Frames and sashes made from vinyl or fi­bre­glass have mul­ti­ple in­te­rior cham­bers which can be foam-filled to in­crease ef­fi­ciency. Vinyl can also be formed as one solid piece with very small air pock­ets.

Frames and sashes made from metal tend to be less en­ergy ef­fi­cient be­cause metal con­ducts heat more read­ily but this ma­te­rial is of­ten used in fen­es­tra­tion prod­ucts in­stalled in high-rise and com­mer­cial build­ings to meet build­ing and fire codes.


Glaz­ing is the term for the trans­par­ent ma­te­rial, usu­ally glass, used in a win­dow, door or sky­light.

Usu­ally the glaz­ing is con­tained in some­thing called an in­su­lat­ing glass (IG) unit which con­sists of at least two panes of glass sep­a­rated by a spacer bar and sealed around the edges to make them air­tight.

The more glaz­ing lay­ers, the bet­ter. For ex­am­ple, triple glazed prod­ucts have three lay­ers of glass and are up to 50 per cent more ef­fi­cient than dou­ble glazed prod­ucts. A thin layer of polyester film may be used to re­place one pane of glass and re­duce the over­all weight.

Low-E glass has a fine metal coat­ing de­signed to re­duce heat loss in win­ter and heat gain in sum­mer by up to 30 per cent. Tinted glass will re­duce sum­mer cool­ing costs but may in­crease heat­ing costs in the longer heat­ing sea­son.


IG units are typ­i­cally filled with an in­ert gas such as ar­gon or kryp­ton to re­duce heat trans- fer through the glass.

The spacer bar may be made of foam, plas­tic, glass or stain­less steel to re­duce heat loss.

The spacer bar has a des­ic­cant in it that ab­sorbs mois­ture af­ter the unit is sealed to pre­vent fog­ging.

Some win­dows have metal or plas­tic grilles in­side the IG unit to give the artis­tic ef­fect of many in­di­vid­ual panes of glass. These pop­u­lar fea­tures also re­duce the amount of so­lar heat en­ter­ing the home.

Emerg­ing tech­nolo­gies

Vac­uum IG units, which have no air or in­ert gas in­side, trans­fer sig­nif­i­cantly less heat than stan­dard gas-filled units.

Aero­gel glaz­ing uses a highly in­su­lat­ing, low-den­sity sil­i­cabased solid be­tween the glass panes. This aero­gel elim­i­nates the need for low-E glass and in­ert gas fills.

Elec­trochromic glaz­ing (some­times called “smart” glaz­ing, switch­able glaz­ing or ac­tive glaz­ing) can be dark­ened with the flick of a switch to re­duce the amount of so­lar heat and light pass­ing through the glass.


As the On­tario gov­ern­ment shuts down a re­bate pro­gram for en­ergy-ef­fi­cient home im­prove­ments, many peo­ple have been scram­bling to take ad­van­tage of the in­cen­tives.

But be­ware. The fed­eral gov­ern­ment warns con­sumers that Ot­tawa does not pro­vide re­bates or in­cen­tives for en­ergy prod­ucts. If you see a web­site pur­port­ing to rep­re­sent the Gov­ern­ment of Canada and promis­ing re­bates, con­tact the ap­pro­pri­ate pro­vin­cial or fed­eral con­sumer pro­tec­tion au­thor­i­ties.

Call po­lice if you are ap­proached by sales­peo­ple try­ing to sell fur­naces, hot wa­ter heaters, and other sim­i­lar equip­ment us­ing mis­lead­ing and high pres­sure sales tac­tics.

The Gov­ern­ment of Canada, Nat­u­ral Re­sources Canada and its fam­ily of brands (EN­ERGY STAR, En­erGuide and ecoENERGY) never go door to door ask­ing to en­ter homes to in­spect, sell, or rent heat­ing and cool­ing equip­ment.

En­erGuide home en­ergy eval­u­a­tions are per­formed by li­cenced ser­vice or­ga­ni­za­tions only at the re­quest of home­own­ers.

BAR­RIER: Yves Gau­thier shows the win­dow seal that is key to keep­ing out Old Man Win­ter.

USER FRIENDLY: Sales rep­re­sen­ta­tive Tim Char­ron with a dou­ble-hung “guil­lo­tine” style win­dow that is man­u­fac­tured in Alexan­dria.

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