Do the Math!

Old House Journal - - Know How -

A col­league pre­par­ing a video asked for help find­ing a graphic he’d once seen in an en­ergy lec­ture: the lec­turer thought it had come from OHJ. It’s a chart that com­pared pay­back pe­ri­ods for var­i­ous win­dow-up­grade op­tions. We went hunt­ing for it, and found the orig­i­nal in the Oc­to­ber 2007 is­sue. We have not up­dated it, but prices haven’t changed rad­i­cally since then. The ra­tios are cer­tainly the same. (Costs as­sume a 3' x 5' win­dow, in­stalled, and gas heat at $1.09/therm.) If ever there were a sharp stick in the eye for re­place­ment-win­dow sales­peo­ple, this has to be it. Even if new win­dows re­sulted in an­nual fuel-cost sav­ings, it would take a very long time to pay back the ini­tial in­vest­ment cost of the new win­dows.

Weights and pul­leys cre­ate a su­pe­rior bal­ance sys­tem—when it’s re­newed, you can open a sash with one hand. Any draft is more likely com­ing from a gap at the out­side trim, or a poor seal at the floor joists.

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