High-Performance Windows Market Characterization Study

Thin triple windows (TTW) are emerging as a promising new opportunity for super-efficient residential windows. To understand the awareness of and potential market for TTWs and gain insight into how the mid- and down-stream window markets function in the Northwest, the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) contracted with Cadeo to conduct the Market Characterization that serves as the basis for this report. The study focused primarily on retrofits in existing homes, not new construction, and specifically explored the perspectives of three key market influencers: the homeowners that purchase and live with window products, the glazing professionals who install residential window products, and the midstream supply chain responsible for supplying both groups.

The study identified key barriers in the choice architecture related to adoption of high-performance windows broadly and TTWs specifically, including patterns of availability and familiarity, potential mismatches between homeowner values and supply chain assumptions, and the high incremental costs associated with TTWs. Additional findings include a general expectation among homeowners and supply chain actors that all new windows can be classified as high-performance, particularly in comparison to older windows being replaced, as well as a path-to-purchase model that includes significant contributing factors and trigger points. The report provides recommendations to mitigate market barriers and navigate the dynamics identified.

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