Common Materials for Southern Windows
Especially for windows for homes in the coastal South, homeowners will need to consider hurricane resistance and the area's strict window regulations. For homes in the coastal South, such as Florida, aluminum is the most common window frame material. Aluminum is one of the strongest structural materials available for windows today and can withstand strong coastal storms. However, aluminum also conducts heat quickly, which means that this material can become hot in the South's warm climate.
Wood is also less than ideal for windows for homes in Southern climates. Warm, wet weather tends attract insects and can lead to potential rot and mold growth in your wooden windows. Additionally, vinyl is weak and prone to bending, so is not the best choice for windows in homes in the storm-prone South.
Fiberglass window frames make very energy efficient windows for homes, since they do not swell or shrink with fluctuating temperatures. Because fiberglass stands up well to humidity and will not rot, this is also a good option for windows for homes in the South. Because they are more stable than normal wood frames and less prone to rotting, composite frames are also excellent choices for the South.
Especially in the coastal South, homeowners should also consider purchasing storm windows for added protection against hurricanes.
Windows for homes in the South should provide cooling and storm protection. | © CC BY 2.0 flickr.com / Torrey Wiley
Glass for Southern Windows
A basic gas-filled, double-pane window should be enough insulation to keep your home warm during the South's mild winters. However, during the summer, cooling is a big priority for windows in homes in the South. There are several coatings, fillings, and additions you can include to make your windows not only stylish, but cost-effective as well.
Spectrally selective or other low-e coatings reflect a high percentage of heat, allowing the sun's light to pass through the glass into the home while keeping unwanted heat outside. Spectrally selective coatings can reduce solar heat gain by as much as 70 percent more than regular glass.
Window Treatments for Southern Windows
One of the most popular window treatments for windows for homes in the South are plantation shutters. These elegant, classic shutters can help keep your home shady and well-ventilated during the hot Southern summers.
Energy Efficient Windows for Homes in the South
Homeowners should choose windows that have a lower solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC), as they will reflect more of the sun's heat and help to minimize monthly energy bills. Southern homeowners should also consider investing their money in spectrally selective low-e glass. The right types of glass can make windows for homes in the South a strong energy investment.
Summary: Southern Windows for Storm and Heat Protection
Smart window investments for this region include strong frame materials such as aluminum or fiberglass, storm windows, and special glass with spectrally selective or low-e coatings to cool your home. With these choices, windows for homes in the South are sure to stay cool and safe.