Single Pane vs. Double Pane Windows: Make the Wise Choice for Energy Efficiency

Single Pane vs. Double Pane Windows: Make the Wise Choice for Energy Efficiency

When choosing the right windows for your home, one of the key concepts to understand is the difference between single pane vs. double pane windows. Today, most windows are double paned, and there’s good reason. These windows provide numerous advantages that help keep your home climate controlled and energy-efficient. Learn more about the differences below.

Single Pane vs. Double Pane Windows — What’s the Difference?

You may be able to tell whether your home has single vs. double pane windows just by looking. Check your windows near the area where the glass meets the frame. If you live in an older house, what you may find is a single pane of glass attached to the frame. Single pane windows are simple in design, with just one pane of glass separating you from your yard.

If you see a pane of glass, then a gap, and then a second pane of glass on the outside. This is a double pane window.

Anatomy of a Double Pane Window

Understanding the difference between single vs. double pane windows starts with some of the components that make double pane windows unique. While simple in concept, they have a few more components than you might have guessed.

Multiple Panes

The first and most obvious part of a double pane window is the individual panes of glass. Its purpose is to add additional layers of insulation, protecting your home from the elements. Some windows can even have as many as three panes.

Gas Fills

Often, the gap between the two panes of glass is filled with argon, krypton, or another nontoxic gas. This helps insulate your home better than regular air, adding to your windows’ energy efficiency.

Quality Framing Materials

To maximize insulation, the joint between the glass and frame must be as airtight as possible to prevent leaks. A combination of sturdy wood construction and vinyl, fiberglass, and metal can be used to seal your windows thoroughly.

Low-E Glass

Depending on the specifics of your window, you may have what is known in the industry as low-E glass. This specialized material helps reflect infrared and ultraviolet light, increasing your home’s energy efficiency and protecting your furniture.

Benefits of Double Pane Windows

Now that you know what double-pane windows are and how they work, you may be wondering how they can benefit your home. The truth is that there are several perks double pane windows can offer your home and wallet.


Improved insulation means improved energy efficiency in your home. When you’re dealing with hot summer months or cold winters, energy-efficient windows help maintain the temperature in your home. In the end, it all adds up to saving on your heating and cooling bill, which is a benefit that speaks for itself.

Climate Controlled

Sometimes, poorly insulated windows can struggle to keep up with your HVAC system, causing you to wake up shivering or sweating in your bedsheets. Double-pane windows give you more control over the temperature in your home, even during extreme weather.

Protecting Your Home

Heat, cold, and rain aren’t the only things your windows keep out. Double-pane windows are also more effective at reducing noise pollution, meaning noisy lawnmowers will be less of a nuisance early Saturday morning. Professionally installed windows can also help keep out allergens, dust, and moisture, as well as ultraviolet and infrared rays.

Environmentally Friendly

Since double-pane windows are so good at cutting down your energy bill, they can also positively impact the planet in the long run. ENERGY STAR certified windows could save anywhere between 1,000 and 6,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per home, per year.

The Final Analysis

After weighing the pros and cons of single-pane vs. double-pane windows, the choice is clear. The best way to lower your energy bills, manage your home climate, and protect the environment is to invest in quality, professionally installed double-pane windows. Over time, they can pay for themselves and offer you and your family peace of mind.

Want to learn more about taking the next steps toward installing energy-efficient double-pane windows in your home? Get in touch with our Thompson Creek Window specialists today for a consultation.