Window Treatments That Can Help You Beat the Heat

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By Kim Schneider

Tis’ the season to open your curtains and blinds and let the sun shine in! Are you concerned about the sun’s harsh UV rays damaging your floor and décor? Below are several options that can help YOU minimize sun damage, while improving energy efficiency in your home.

Curtains & Drapes: Selecting the proper fabric affects how well your curtains and drapes will help control the heat. Light-colored fabrics help reflect light, which can keep your home cooler, and darker colors can hold heat inside your home. If darker colored curtains are your preference, use a light-colored backing to help reflect the light.

Roman Shades: These window treatments are made of fabric that hangs flat against the window when in the down position, but stack up neatly into horizontal folds when raised. When Roman Shades are closed, they block direct sunlight from entering the room, which keeps your home cooler in the summer.

Insulated Cellular Shades: Cellular shades are also known as honeycomb shades. They consist of vertically stacked air pockets, called cells that create an insulating effect. Cellular shades block harsh summer sunlight, but they also help add a little insulation on drafty windows. During the cooler months, the cells hold warmer air in your home, and in the warmer months they hold cool conditioned air, while assisting to block the heat from the sun.

The size of the cell affects the energy efficiency of these window shades. Larger cells provide more energy efficiency since they can trap more air. Single-cell shades are generally cheaper and can help in moderate climates, but for us Destin residents it’s best to use the double- or triple-cell shades, since we really need the highest energy efficiency during our summer months.

Louvered Window Blinds: Louvered blinds include all types of blinds that have adjustable slats. While they don’t control heat loss as much as other window treatments, you can control the amount of direct sunlight that comes into the home by adjusting the slats to different angles.

Indoor Plantation Shutters: Interior plantation shutters fit tightly inside the window frame to completely block the window when closed. They’re made of solid materials, including wood, faux wood and vinyl. Because they’re made of thick materials, they can help trap hot air between the glass and the shutters to keep it from entering your room. The slats or louvers can close completely to block hot, direct sunlight during the summer heat, which also helps you feel cooler. Louvered plantation shutters can swing open if you want to let in full sunlight or you rotate the louvers up or down to let in some light without getting a lot of direct UV rays.

Solar Window Shades: Roller shades are window coverings that roll up and down around a tube at the top of the window. One specific type is the solar shade that’s designed to block UV rays. They’re made of a tightly woven mesh material designed to shield your interior from UV rays. Even with the solar shade closed, you still get some brightness in the room and can see the views outside of your home. Light colored solar shades are best for heat control because they help reflect the light away from your windows. Dark colored shades are better for glare control, but they also help a little with heat control.

Window Films: Window films are adhered to the interior glass and come in many different shades and grades. These applications provide a variety of benefits including but not limited to energy savings through solar control, fade control and UV protection, privacy, enhance curb appeal, lessen glare and provide safety and protection for Destin’s beloved sea turtles.

You don’t need to live in the dark, nor do you have to give up your view to stay cool and save a few bucks. Coastal Design by Kim can assist YOU in selecting the widow covering for your home or business. Contact us at (805) 904-6622 or email us at kim@coastaldesignbykim. You can also visit our website at www.coastaldesignbykim.com; 981 Highway 98 E, Ste. #3-346, Destin.