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How Much Do Energy-Efficient Windows Cost? (2024 Guide)

Energy-efficient windows cost homeowners an average of $1,337 but typically range from $150–$4,000 per window. See which factors will impact your total cost.

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Author Image Written by Jessica Wimmer + 1 other Reviewer Icon Reviewed by Mark Howey Updated 07/11/2024

The cost of an energy-efficient window typically runs between $150–$4,000 on average before installation but there are several variables that can contribute to that estimation.* According to the Department of Energy, 25%–30% of your home’s heating and cooling energy is lost through its windows. Investing in energy-efficient windows that minimize heat transfer means your HVAC system won’t have to work as hard, prolonging its life span and lowering your energy bills.

Our guide breaks down factors that impact what you’ll pay for energy-efficient windows, things to look for, how to save money, and other tips for finding the best windows for your home.
*Article cost data via Fixr.


What Makes a Window Energy-Efficient?

The following features combine to make a window more energy-efficient:

Multiple window panes: All energy-efficient windows have at least two panes, and some even have three panes of glass. These units are called integrated glass units, or IGUs. Each layer of glass and air space decreases the energy transfer between the interior and exterior of the unit.
Window spacers: The glass panes are held apart by spacers, often made of aluminum, stainless steel, foam, or polymer. They create a seal, regulate temperature transfer, and provide structural integrity to the IGU.
Gas fills: Filling the gaps between glass panes with nonreactive noble gases instead of air provides an additional insulating effect. Argon is the most common, but krypton gas provides slightly better energy efficiency. Because the gases are denser than air, there’s less heat transfer.
Low-e glass coatings: Short for “low-emissivity,” low-e coatings reflect infrared and ultraviolet (UV) light without blocking visible light. This keeps heat from transferring indoors and also protects items which the window sheds light on from fading.
Insulated window frame materials: Although energy-efficient windows come in the same frame materials as standard windows, conductive materials such as aluminum may contain heat breaks and hollow materials such as fiberglass and vinyl can be filled with insulation.

How Much Do Energy-Efficient Windows Cost for Your Whole House?

The cost of energy-efficient windows for your whole house costs an average of $6,685–$33,425. The energy-efficient windows cost varies by the number, size, type, and style of windows that you are replacing.

Number of WindowsAverage Cost

5–6

$6,685–$8,022

8–10

$10,696–$13,370

13–15

$17,381–$20,055

18–20

$24,066–$26,740

23–25

$30,751–$33,425


What Factors Affect Energy-Efficient Window Installation Costs?

There are various factors that play roles in the cost of the average energy-efficient window. Below is a look at some of the most important:

  • Window size: Larger windows generally cost more for both materials and installation.
  • Glass type: The more glass panes a window contains, the more it costs overall.
  • Window type: Large picture or bay windows require additional glass and therefore cost more on average.
  • Frame material: Aluminum and vinyl almost always cost less than fiberglass, composite, or wood frames.

Cost by Window Size

What Is the Most Energy Efficient Type of Window?

Triple-pane windows are the most energy-efficient type of window glass because they are comprised of three layers of insulated glass, reducing heat and sound.

Energy-efficient triple-pane windows tend to cost between $25 and $40 per square foot, though standard window shapes and sizes cost less than custom windows. Here are some standard window sizes and their accompanying cost ranges:

Window Size (in Inches)Square FootagePrice RangeAverage Cost
24×36
6.00
$150–$240
$195
24×52
8.67
$216.75–$346.80
$282
32×48
10.67
$266.75–$426.80
$347
32×52
11.55
$288.75–$462
$375
36×72
18.00
$450–$720
$585

Cost by Glass Type

A window’s glazing refers to the type of glass and number of panes. Double-pane windows usually cost between $150 and $1,290 to purchase and install. Triple-pane window pricing usually runs between $400 and $3,540 with an average cost of $1,920 per window. Triple-pane windows are more expensive but offer superior insulation, greater energy efficiency, and strong noise reduction.

Cost by Type of Window

While some of the most common windows are of the single-hung or slider varieties, there are many window types available. Here are some price ranges for different window types, not including installation.

Window StyleCost RangeAverage Cost
Bay windows
$1,030–$8,300
$4,665
Bow windows
$1,620–$7,700
$4,660
Casement windows
$400–$2,400
$1,400
Double-hung windows
$400–$2,000
$1,200
Picture windows
$300–$2,000
$1,150
Single-hung windows
$400–$2,000
$1,200
Sliding windows
$270–$2,000
$1,135

Cost of Window Frame Materials

Leading window brands such as Andersen typically offer several window frame materials, though some brands focus solely on one or two. Here are the most common window frame materials and how they compare in terms of energy efficiency:

Aluminum framed windows have midrange prices but are poor insulators since aluminum conducts heat very well. Even with heat breakers, aluminum window frames are the least efficient. Because of this, they’re not allowed in all jurisdictions.
Vinyl windows often represent the best balance of cost-effectiveness and energy efficiency. Vinyl is a good insulator and requires little maintenance, though it may crack or peel with time and UV exposure. Hollow vinyl frames can be filled with extra insulation for increased performance.
Wood is the most traditional frame material, and it’s a moderately good insulator. However, wood requires finishing and refinishing maintenance and is susceptible to rot and water damage. Wood windows can also come with exterior cladding to reduce finishing requirements and extend their life spans.
Composite window frames typically contain wood particles bound together by polymers or resin. They’re often made to look like wood but have better durability, lower maintenance costs, and slightly better energy efficiency.
Fiberglass windows are the most durable and energy-efficient, but they’re also the most expensive and least available. Like composite, fiberglass is often made to look like wood.
Frame MaterialCost Range

Aluminum

$300–$2,000

Vinyl

$300–$1,700

Wood

$300–$2,000

Composite

$400–$1,900

Fiberglass

$300–$1,900

Cost data is from a survey that we conducted of 1,500 homeowners who replaced their windows in the recent past.

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Are Energy Star Windows Worth It?

Energy-efficient windows, which in the U.S. are Energy Star-certified, make use of different materials and features to minimize heat loss or gain. They often contain multiple glass panes separated by insulating gases, and the glass may be coated to reduce the amount of UV radiation allowed to pass through. Although these windows tend to be more expensive than single-pane windows, they produce significant energy savings over time. You’ll eventually get a return on your investment, especially if you stay in your home for 10 years or more and take advantage of tax credits.

Although windows provide natural light and ventilation, they also act as a weak point when it comes to keeping your home comfortable. Air infiltration around windows and skylights allows for easy heat transfer. Additionally, letting in sunlight heats the interior, which can be desirable in winter but forces your air conditioner to work harder during the summer. Heat can also transfer through the window frame or glass itself, subtly heating or cooling your home’s interior and increasing costs.

The amount of money you can save on your utility bill depends on the local climate and your current windows’ condition. Single-pane windows are the least energy-efficient, containing clear glass with no coatings. If you replace these home windows with Energy Star-certified windows, you stand to save $101–$583 per year in energy costs.
Homeowners who install windows or skylights that meet certain Energy Star standards may qualify for a federal tax credit. For windows purchased and installed between Jan. 1, 2023, and Dec. 31, 2032, you can claim 30% of the total project cost for both materials and labor up to a maximum of $600. This applies to window replacement costs in existing homes that are primary residences rather than rental properties. Depending on where you live, you may also be able to find state and local credits or rebates.

DIY vs. Professional Window Installation

Window installation is usually best left to professionals, though experienced do-it-yourself homeowners may be able to install replacement windows in some circumstances. Be aware that installing energy-efficient windows incorrectly may significantly reduce their energy savings. The number of panes and type of filler gas won’t matter if air can leak around the window frames.

Installing windows yourself also comes with more than financial risks. Heavy windows, such as those with multiple panes, are difficult to lift and easy to drop, so take precautions. Be extra careful if you’re installing a window on a second or third floor. Unless you’re experienced at installation, we recommend hiring a professional crew. Expert installers assume all risks and know how to properly install and seal your windows for maximum energy savings. Plus, some manufacturers void their warranties if your windows aren’t installed by a licensed professional.

If you’re curious what to expect from professional installers, check out our step-by-step window installation guide detailing our team member’s experience joining a Renewal by Andersen installation crew on a job site.

Window contractors typically charge $40–$65 per hour. Anything that increases the installation’s complexity and time will increase the total cost. Upper-story and difficult-to-access windows may cost $600 each to install. Since there may be a flat service call fee, it’s typically less expensive to replace all existing windows at once rather than a few at a time.

How Do I Check Energy-Efficient Windows’ Performance?

Energy efficiency can be measured in a few unique ways. The National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) developed the standards that are used to determine which products qualify for Energy Star certification.

  • Visible transmittance (VT): VT is a measure of how much visible light makes it through the window. Tinted windows with lower VT let in less light and therefore less heat, but they force you to rely more on artificial lighting. VT is measured on a 0–1 scale, with higher numbers indicating that more light can get through.
  • Solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC): SHGC reveals how much of the sun’s heat is transferred through the window. It’s also measured on a 0–1 scale, with lower ratings indicating a more efficient window.
  • U-factor: A window’s U-factor is an indication of how much heat the window keeps inside the home. This number typically ranges from 0.2–1.2, with lower numbers being more efficient.
  • Air leakage: This factor measures a window’s draft resistance. It should be lower than 0.3 in efficient windows.
  • Condensation resistance (CR): CR is an optional measure that shows how well a window prevents condensation from forming on its interior surface. It’s measured from 1–100, and higher numbers are better. Not all windows include this rating.

Are Energy-Efficient Windows Worth the Cost?

Consider upgrading to new, energy-efficient windows if you want to increase your home’s efficiency and decrease your utility bills. Insulated, double-pane vinyl windows with a low SHGC and U-factor are the most affordable replacement windows that still offer energy-efficient features. Fiberglass triple-pane windows provide maximum efficiency, but they’re more expensive.

We recommend consulting a local window contractor to determine the best options for your home and budget. Request estimates from at least three companies to find the lowest energy-efficient window cost.

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FAQs About Energy-Efficient Windows

What type of window is most energy-efficient?

Triple-pane windows in fiberglass frames are typically the most energy-efficient window option, but they’re also the priciest. For more limited budgets, insulated vinyl frames are an excellent choice.

Do energy-efficient windows increase home value?

Energy-efficient windows do increase a home’s value. According to Remodeling Magazine’s 2023 Cost versus Value Report, insulated vinyl window replacements with low-e glass had an average return on investment (ROI) of 68.5%, or approximately $13,766. This is a higher ROI than projects such as a new asphalt roof or a bathroom remodel.


Our Rating Methodology

We back up our window ratings and recommendations with a detailed rating methodology to objectively score each provider. We conduct research by speaking with company representatives, browsing product selections, analyzing window line specifications, and conducting focus groups and consumer surveys. We then score each provider against our review standards for window variety, value, trustworthiness and transparency, window features, and customer service to arrive at a final score on a 5-point rating scale. 

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