ENERGY STAR is an international symbol of energy efficiency. It indicates products that meet a premium level of energy efficiency as set out by guidelines by the Canadian Federal Government and the Office of Energy Efficiency. Energy Star labelled products exceed the minimum energy efficient criteria for the climate region you reside in – in some cases by as much as 40% – reducing home energy costs better than products that are not labelled with the accreditation.
As an example – for windows to qualify as an Energy Star product, they must meet strict technical requirements for both thermal and structural performance. They’re qualified based on either their U-value (the rate of heat transfer from a warm area to a cold area) or their overall energy rating (a scale that considers the U-Value, potential solar gain, and seal/air tight factor – as an example, Ottawa requires windows to be Zone B – an ER of 25 or more). The colder the climate you live in, the more stringent the requirement. Energy efficient windows also increase comfort, cut down noise levels from outside the home, have less condensation in cold weather than standard products, and allow fewer U/V rays to pass through glazed areas – protecting from sun damage.