If you’re experiencing energy costs in the past few months that seem abnormal or unusually high, it could be the case that your windows are to blame. Poorly insulated windows can lead to excess heat loss and gain and cause your hvac system to work harder.

To remedy this issue, you have two options:
1. Replace the old windows with new windows.
2. Retrofit your existing windows with window film.

But which is the better choice between the two. Well, it really depends. Typically, our company recommends window film for Oakland homes. But sometimes people due opt for window replacement for aesthetic purposes. It really depends on your goals and needs.

Window Film vs. Window Replacement

If your concern is purely financial, it’s best to compare the payback periods for the two. This depends on the upfront investment cost and how much savings are accrued over a certain period of time.

Window Replacement

Let’s start with window replacement. Window replacement is an instinctive choice. If the old windows aren’t working, why not just get rid of them and throw in some new ones? Unfortunately, not only is this not an eco friendly option, but it can also be quite expensive.

double pane windows

It’s true that new windows can add aesthetic value to a home. But in terms of energy efficiency, they’re not always the best choice. New windows cost anywhere from $40-55 per window and can take as long as 20-30 years to provide a full ROI. So if you’re planning on selling your home anytime in the future, this may not be the best choice. Most mortgages are only 30 years long anyway.

Window Film

The other option for improving window performance is window film. Window films come in many different options. Some are reflective, some are clear, and some are tinted to create privacy. Standard window films typically run about $4-6 per sq ft while more expensive options like low-e window film can cost up to $15 per sq ft.

window film oakland

The true beauty of window film is it’s ROI. Window film provides a full payback on average in 2-5 years. And it last for over 10 years. So within half of its lifetime, the film pays itself off. Then, you actually profit from the film after the 5 year mark. At the end of 10 years, you can simply have it replaced.


In the end it really depends on the homeowner. Ask yourself, How long am I going to be in this home? Am I looking for an aesthetic alteration or is energy savings more of the goal? (Many times, window film can accomplish more goals than one). If you’re still unsure, it may be a good idea to contact a few window film and window replacement contractors.

Speak to an Expert

If you would like to talk to an expert about your architectural needs, please do not hesitate to contact our office. One of our staff members will be more than happy to chat with you and can even provide you with an estimate on window film in Oakland. Call now to get started.