The faster warm air leaks out of your home, the more your furnace has to work to keep up. Proper insulation in your walls, floors, and ceiling will do much to keep your home comfortable, but it won't be enough. Your windows don't have the insulating ability that your walls have, so unless you do something to stop heat loss through your windows, your furnace will never be as efficient as it could be.
What to Expect from Double-Pane Windows
Older homes have only a single pane of glass, newer homes will have two panes of glass with a sandwich of gas between the panes. This will double the insulation value of the window as compared to a single pane of glass, but the total R-value will still be 2. If you have an older home, retrofitting your home with double-pane windows will be worth the money in that they will boost your furnace efficiency and thus save you money. Still, there is more you can do.
A low-e film does not trap heat in your home in the same way that wall insulation does. Instead, the film creates a heat reflective surface, which prevents heat from leaking out through your windows. Installing window film in your home can cut your cooling costs by up to 25%. For their cost, window films are one of the most effective ways to boost the efficiency of your furnace.
If you want to do even more to improve the performance of your windows, you can install thermal curtains. They will have a layer of foil to reflect heat into your home. Some curtains will also have a layer of insulation. If you are worried about blocking the view from your windows. You can pull the curtains only at night to protect your home from the worst of the cold, then trust your window film to protect you during the day.
The best way to defend your home against the cold is to recognize where the weakest parts of your defense are and then beef them up. In order to prevent your heating bills from monopolizing your winter budget, you need to upgrade your windows. In that window upgrades will help to reduce your heating costs, your savings should absorb the cost of insulation so that you don't have to worry about further restricting your budget. Once you pay off your upgrades, you are left with pure savings. For more information, contact a local heating services company.