Running your air conditioner is an excellent way to keep cool during the peak summer heat. As wonderful as the relief is, it’s not always so wonderful when your electric bill arrives. So, how can you stay extra cool without increasing your bill? Custom window coverings is the answer for many of our clients.
When we do a design session, we aren’t only looking at aesthetics (though that’s a big part!) we want to make sure you’re getting the most out of each product you choose. To us, window coverings are more than just design, they’re about improving your home and life.
What better way to improve both than saving money in the long run while being able to keep cool. Here are our favorite ways to beat the heat with window coverings:
Custom Curtains and Drapes
As wonderful as natural light can be, in the peak of summer, light can equal heat. It’s ideal to keep your curtains and drapes closed during the day, especially during the hottest hours. You’ll want to pay extra attention to the side of your home where the sun hits, being sure to have good quality curtains or drapes.
We’re all about design and finding the curtains or drapes that look best in your home. However, we also want to help you save money and keep cool. Having proper window coverings and keeping them closed during the summer days truly changes the temperature in your home. In fact, some studies find medium-colored draperies with white plastic backings can reduce heat gain by 33 percent. (Heat gain means sunlight entering your home, becoming heat.) The flipside is also true – in the cooler months, about 30% of your home’s heat is lost through your windows. You can have fun choosing colors and designing your home while helping your home be energy efficient.
Another option for reducing heat transfer is custom shades. Like curtains and drapes, they filter some of the heat by blocking the natural light. To be most efficient, they need to be drawn all day and fit close to the window glass, but you can easily program them to close when the sun shines on that window and open the rest of the day!
Shades are a great option for adding color, texture and different fabric into a room where shades or curtains might look overwhelming. You get the benefit of fabric design window coverings while taking up less space in the room. This is perfect for smaller rooms or rooms with a lot of furniture. It’s also a great option for children’s bedrooms or play areas if you’re concerned about little hands tugging on long drapes. Cordless options also prevent strangulation, which is a scary hazard to have in a bedroom, playroom, or anywhere children and pets frequently play.
When choosing custom window coverings, you have the option to choose from a variety of things which best compliment the room you’re designing while also getting the benefit of energy efficiency regardless of which option you choose.
When custom blinds are completely closed, they can reduce heat transfer by 45 percent. This is an excellent way to reduce your dependence on air conditioning and save a bit of money long term. While open, they may not be as efficient as while closed, but they can still let a bit of natural light in while reducing the heat transfer a bit.
The great thing about custom blinds is you have a lot of materials and textures to choose from. When people think of blinds, they tend to think of the basic white blinds found in many commercial locations. However, with custom blinds the options are almost endless. You can choose from the basic white blinds, or you can choose a variety of wooden blinds, different colors, and other materials. You also have the option to modernize and go with motorized blinds. The wonderful thing about motorized blinds is you can program them to be open and closed at the necessary times to be most energy efficient. With these modern blinds you can make the best of a classic look with the convenience of high tech.
If you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of motorized blinds be sure to read How Motorized Blinds & Shades Improve Your Life.
Beating the summer heat is on everyone’s mind. It’s easy to jump right to the most energy efficient appliances, but don’t forget to update your window coverings. Not only can you brighten up and create a more welcoming space with new coverings, you can make your home more energy efficient.