Even if you love soaking up the sun all summer, you may be dreading the air conditioning bills headed your way. If you’re looking for a more energy and cost efficient way to heat and cool your home, you may want replace old windows. But how much money can new energy efficient windows really save

How Much Energy is Lost?

If you have single-pane windows in your house, replacing them with high-efficiency windows—meaning double-pane, filled with argon gas, and coated with low emission film—the new windows will provide close to twice the insulation value, cutting energy loss through your windows by 50 percent.

While that may sound like massive savings, only about 30 percent of heating and air conditioning escapes through windows, so you can expect your energy costs to decrease by 15 percent. Depending on your cooling and heating costs, and the number of windows in your home, it may take a couple of decades to get your initial investment. But that’s not the only reason to invest in new windows.

A Return on Your Investment

Your energy bill might not look as dramatically low as you expect after replacing your windows, but that doesn’t mean energy efficient windows aren’t a great investment. Look for tax credits in your state, which are typically close to $1500 to receive a return on your investment the year you install. Homeowners also get back approximately 80 percent of their window replacement costs when they sell, so it’s a solid way to add value to your home.