4 Ways to Use Office Windows for Energy Efficiency
Your office workers undoubtedly appreciate having a light and airy office in which to do their jobs. But office windows can provide more than just a better view. They also contribute to energy savings and productivity. How? Here are four ways to use windows to your advantage in the office.
1. Update for Energy Efficiency
Most new office buildings are designed with modern, energy-efficient windows that reduce heat loss and cold drafts. But if you have an older building, find out the actual energy efficiency of the existing windows. Window technology continues to update, and what was energy-efficient a few years ago is considerably less functional than those available today.
When you get the most energy-efficient materials, you can use more windows in your building without worrying about the bills. This brings in more light and contributes to a happier workplace and a better appearance for customers.
2. Add Windows that Open
Many offices are tightly sealed and incorporate non-moving windows. But advantages exist to bucking this trend — at least with some windows. When the weather is moderate — throughout spring and fall — employees can open windows to circulate air and keep their areas more comfortable on their own. You rely less on air conditioners, central heating, and inefficient fans or heaters.
The simple ability to open a window can also have a psychological effect on office personnel. Doing so makes people feel more empowered and able to personalize their work areas a little bit to their taste. Fresh air can also reinvigorate a person when their energy levels feel low. It also replaces stale, recycled air throughout the building — not just in the office with an open window.
3. Increase Natural Lighting
Of course, one of the biggest energy savings from any window can come from its natural sunlight. Strategic use of windows (often called daylighting) helps reduce use of artificial lighting — and is good for workers. A lighting strategy should incorporate different window and door choices, including glass doors, skylights, transoms, sky tubes, casement windows, and cozy bay windows.
Of course, big, open windows can also create lighting issues if not done properly. You do not want a large, south-facing window to shine bright sunlight onto people’s computer terminals or in their faces when at their desks. In this case, taller clerestory windows that let in overhead light might be a better choice than direct lighting. You also want to avoid windows that do little to help during certain seasons.
4. Be Strategic About Furnishings
The placement and style of windows is not the only thing to be careful with. You also need to consider carefully the placement of interior furnishings around the windows. Appliances and technology that have to maintain a certain internal temperature could be affected if the sun shines on them all day long.
The office refrigerator, for instance, will use more energy if it constantly fights with outdoor heat sources. Similarly, copiers, printers, laptops and computers, and projectors all need to keep a safe working temperature and so should not be in direct sunlight. If sunlight is a problem for any specific space, add window coverings that are adjustable as they are needed. What is your office window strategy? If you are not sure where to use certain windows for a better effect on the utility bills or when to upgrade existing windows, work with an experienced window installation service. At Fischer Window & Door Store, we can help. Call today to start designing the right window coverage for your particular office. We look forward to hearing from you and answering all your questions about windows.