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Saving Original Historic Windows With Building Electrification

The Economic & Environmental Case for Saving Antique Single Glazed Windows, Reducing Energy Costs & Providing Thermal Comfort

109 Prince Street NYC, built in 1882, restored in 1994 - Awarded. Landmark Certificate of Merit

"Window glass can last for over 1000 years. The first mouth-blown cylinder technique of making sheet glass for windows was developed in Germany during the 11th century. In 1226, this technique was brought to England. Molten glass was gathered on a blowpipe and blown into an elongated, balloon shape, then cut and flattened by hand. Each piece had and still has the character of an original oil painting. However, most of this glass has been destroyed due to thoughtless modern window replacement and dumbed down "historic preservation" guidelines that allowed it.

The average life expectancy of a double glazed IG unit is only 15 years, which implies a short life and repetitive replacements. The current cost to replace a single failed IG unit in a building, such as our example at 109 Prince Street, would be about $1200 for materials and labor. If the glass had been "modernized" in 1994 and enjoyed the 15-year lifespan, it would be ready for its third replacement, resulting in a total cost of $2400 per pane in today's dollars. If the building makes it to 2182, the cost per pane replacement for a total of 12.5 replacements would be $15,000 per pane in today's currency. Since there are 4 panes of glass per opening, we arrive at an unhappy cost of $60,000 per window.

Failed IG units do not get recycled; they get hauled away and fed into landfills. It gets worse. The ugly fact of life is that the entire window will be trashed into landfills and replaced with the latest and greatest "historic window series." So much for embedded carbon.

With over 500 major historic window restoration and replication projects to our credit, including 109 Prince Street, we have developed solutions to preserve real historic windows. Our IQRG technology offers frameless or framed, operable or fixed solutions for interior applications that outperform any and every other modern window.

The basic premise for window replacement is thermal comfort (per ASHRAE Standard 55-2010) and energy conservation. We have better solutions that retain the legacy windows, provide healthy thermal comfort, and reduce energy costs by a minimum of 25 to 50%, with the added benefit of displacing fossil fuel heating systems.

Our system is beneficial for schools, institutional and government buildings, and is well-suited for older buildings and larger private residences. We will soon be releasing an AIA accredited course for engineers, architects, and other professionals interested in building electrification for historic and legacy buildings. This course will also be available in a PowerPoint presentation, which you can request through our website."

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