Single Pane or Double Pane Windows – What’s the Difference?

The differences between a single pane and a double paned window are both simple, yet very measurable. The key difference is that the “pane” references the plate of glass in the window, so a single pane window has one plate of glass and a double-pane has two plates of glass. The gap between the plates provides a layer of air that services as insulation for better efficiency in maintaining temperatures inside the home. Keeping it warmer in the winter, and cooler in the summer. There are a variety of factors to consider when deciding the benefits of whether or not to upgrade the windows in your home.

Single Pane Windows

Single pane windows, usually found in older homes, are made with one layer of glass. If you look closely from the side you can usually tell if there is a single pane of glass or two (or three) panes with space between them, often this space is filled with insulating argon gas. Occasionally there will be an additional removable pane of glass that is commonly known as a storm window. A window with a storm window installed DOES NOT make it a double-pane window.

Single pane windows do not offer very good protection from hot summer days or cold winter nights. This is because heat is able to easily transfer through the un-insulated glass. The insulating layer of argon gas between multi-pane windows makes all the difference! This additional layer of air slows down the heat transfer through the glass and helps to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

Other Benefits of Double-Paned Windows

In addition to the benefits in maintaining energy costs for insulating the loss of heat between indoors and outdoors, double pane windows also help with a reduction of noise you’ll hear from the outside when sitting in a room of your home that does have double pane windows. If your home is located near busy streets or maybe even highways or interstate traffic, the addition of double-pane windows to your home may make a dramatic difference in your experience hearing and dealing with ambient noise around your home.

Whether you should replace your single-pane windows comes down to the specifics of your home, including the amount of outside noise, the amount of money your regularly pay for heating, the age of your home, and a few other factors. If you want lower and more predictable heating and cooling bills, and reduced outside noise, then upgrading your windows may be a good option!


“They did the best job. My roof is better than it was when it was first put on. They used the best materials and really work with us throughout the whole process.”

Joshua Reckelhoff

“Lathrop repaired our chimney and gutters, fixed a significant problem on our front door and replaced our roof. I totally trust Jeff Lathrop and his people.”

Richard Davis

“A hail storm caused quite a bit of damage to the home. Lathrop Contracting replaced the roof, put new siding and gutters on.”

“They did a great job and were very good about staying on schedule. Scott Whitlock was great to communicate with throughout the process. I would highly recommend.”

Brandi Spaeth

“We needed a new roof in a short time before we put our home on the market. Lathrop got it done very timely and the staff was very friendly. Highly recommended.”

Tammy VanDeventer

“Great company to work with. Scott Whitlock was always making sure things were going smoothly. He made sure everyone stayed on schedule and a quality end product was delivered.”

Auggie Settecasi