When people think of old windows they immediately think they hurt your energy savings. What commercial or residential building owners don’t know is that they can keep the charm and historic architecture in tact without ridding of them. Windows can be a defining feature in a buildings appearance, so restoring them could help achieve this preservation.
There are various energy saving tactics that can be put into place on your existing windows. For example, if you properly weather-strip the windows, energy saving can be achieved. The return on investment from just restoring the historic windows may actually be greater than replacing the building with new ones. Replacing windows on an entire building can be costly and may not be financially worthwhile. A true environmentalist would try to avoid the amount of embedded energy that takes place in order to replace an entire building worth of windows.
On the other hand, how well could the windows be preserved? It all depends on the condition of the original windows. If they are far too gone and the framing is rotting it is not worth saving them. With rotting frames there are greater chances for insects and moisture to get in, along with leaking air, resulting in heat loss. Replacing your windows is also a good choice for those who are looking for more sunlight, which can also help with energy savings. Energy efficiency, lifespan, and price are all major factors when it comes to considering new windows. So, decide whether keeping the old charm of the house is your first priority.
If you can no longer bear the steady cold winter draft and battle with your thermostat, window placement might be a better option than restoring. In some cases, restoring an original window may be more appropriate, while replacement can sometimes offer greater advantages: such as energy efficiency, durability, (especially in storm) and easy maintenance.
While you can debate the pros and cons of each side, it really is a preference, and how serious the condition of the existing windows are.