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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Manchester by the Sea, MA
    Posts
    6

    Default New doors more efficient that current ones?

    I searched and couldn't find what I was looking for, so I thought I'd ask for some help.

    I have 3 sliders in my house that are original (House was built in 1975.) They are double paned, and have a single pane storm slider on the outside as well.

    My question is, would new insulated sliders with no storm doors be any more efficient than what I currently have?

    Thanks for any help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    1,769

    Default Re: New doors more efficient that current ones?

    The bigger question might be, will there be an ROI (return on investment) for an upgrade and the short answer is probably no. Replacing sliding glass doors is not cheap and either you have to finance it or take a considerable chunk out of savings, in either case, even with the low interest paid on savings, the energy savings will probably not cover the lost interest from savings.

    New sliders maybe slightly more efficient if they use a thin film of low-E plastic between the glass pains, or low-E glass is used. This gives the windows a higher R value, some claim as high as R-4. Your current setup probably approaches an R-2 or maybe a little better as you have two dead air spaces.

    If your current glass is not coated with a low-E film, you can boost the efficiency by putting a low-E film on it yourself. To get the biggest boost, put the film on the outside glass surface of the primary glass and on the inside surface of the storm glass. That will give you two low-E surfaces facing each other and can that can boost your current setup to an R3 or better.

    The frames of the newer sliders may also be more efficient as older sliders often used a thin aluminum frame. That is really kind of a small surface area to get much gain with a newer vinyl frame. You could look at ways of adding trim to the exposed aluminum parts of the frame to insulate them, and you could also caulk around the fixed window of the slider if it is not already weather stripped.

    But there is one other economic issue to be looked at, are the new sliders more attractive? are the more attractive enough to increase the value of your house enough to offset the cost? and then their is the other issue, do you like the new sliders enough that the cost is worth it to you?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Manchester by the Sea, MA
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: New doors more efficient that current ones?

    Well said! Mine are aluminum frames. aesthetically the new ones would look better, but at $7-800 a piece, it's a big chunk of change for little return. As you mentioned, I may try and caulk the fixed portion, and better weather-seal the rest, and see where that gets me.

    Thank you for the thorough answer.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    nova scotia, canada
    Posts
    1,522

    Default Re: New doors more efficient that current ones?

    your doors are nearly 40 years old, upgrading them would be a very smart decision. not only will you have much better performing door thermally but the operation of it will be much better as well.
    fire up the saw and make some dust

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: New doors more efficient that current ones?

    go with Vinyl, less heat transfer and lowest price.

    http://westchester-architects.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    nova scotia, canada
    Posts
    1,522

    Default Re: New doors more efficient that current ones?

    for price point yes, for better thermal performance go with fibreglass
    fire up the saw and make some dust

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