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The Architectural Products Company

Window Visibility

Finding the ideal window for your home has become a far more extensive and involved experience than ever before. Design, material, aesthetic, efficiency, and even more all have to be carefully balanced in order to bring you a perfect window. But nailing down all of these can mean a whole lot of nothing if you miss one very basic and critical factor: visibility! After all, who wants an energy-efficient window that they can’t even look out of due to a bulky frame and dim glass. If that’s what you end up with you might as well have kept the wall unchanged!

That’s why at APCO we take great care to offer windows with exceptional visibility ratings, bringing you gorgeous, energy-efficient windows that play their role admirably. For the best in clarity, comfort, and product quality, we’re always on your side and helping bring the best we possibly can.

What Is a Visibility Rating?

It’s just glass, right? The problem became a complex one with the advent of windows that are energy-efficient and windows that resist solar heat gain, a principle that can play a huge hand in the effectiveness of your window’s ability to retain comfort in your home. This complicated things because the majority of these efficient windows utilize spectrum-stifling coatings that impact the amount of visible light and ultraviolet rays that can come through your window.

When we talk about the visibility of a window we are talking about the Visible Transmittance, or amount of light the window lets in. But honestly that’s kind of a big word for what essentially means this: you can see out of the window, and how much light (and by extension heat) the window lets in.

Visibility rating is expressed in a number value that ranges from 0 at its lowest, and 1.0 at its highest. This means at 0.0 transmittance a window would let in practically or literally no light or heat, while at 1.0 the window would let in literally everything (and would basically be a hole in your wall).

For example a top-end, high visibility window sports a rating of roughly .50 or higher, with a good window being around .45. No window features a Visible Transmittance of 1.0, and honestly you wouldn’t want it to! It’s about finding a perfect balance of visibility and energy-efficiency, which is why a nice middle .5 is considered top-end.

What Impacts Visibility Rating?

There are a few vital factors that impact the visibility rating of a window, including:

  • The frame. The frame of a window accounts for a considerable percentage of window visibility, and for easy enough reasons. Bigger frame, less viewable window and less light coming in.
  • The glass. The quality of the glass matters, of course, but no successful manufacturer would offer anything less than high quality glass. Do be aware that some less honest companies do take their VT measurement according the the center of the pane, which can give the window a higher rating that it necessarily deserves.
  • Coatings. Low-E coatings and glazes also impact the VT rating. In the past a lot of treated high-efficiency windows were nearly blue, but nowadays the visible difference is negligible at best. Most homeowners don’t notice much of a visible difference, if any at all.


“My new windows and patio door are beautiful. The service from showroom to installed product was excellent. I also feel, through shopping comparisons that I received good value for my investment.” – Susan from Columbus

APCO is driven to bring you the best window products and the best window installation service possible. We offer the best window products and high quality window installation services throughout the following cities and their surrounding areas: Bexley, Columbus, Dublin, Gahanna, Grove City, Lewis Center, Pickerington, Powell, Reynoldsburg, Upper Arlington, and Westerville.

For a quote or to schedule service for the best window installation in the Columbus area, contact us today »

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