As we get closer to summer, the temperatures keep rising—and so do our electricity bills whenever we turn on the air conditioner to find relief from the heat. But there is a simple way to cut down on your a/c reliance (and your energy costs): The best way to block heat from windows is with the right kind of window treatments.
If you’re asking yourself, “How can I cool down my house without a/c,” then you need to invest some time and resources in finding the right blinds, drapery, or shades. There are multiple benefits to using window coverings as an alternative to air conditioning. The federal Department of Energy estimates that roughly 76% of sunlight hitting windows transforms into heat that comes into your house, elevating the temperature. In addition to reducing heat, certain window treatments are also effective at decreasing UV exposure, which can put wear and tear on your interiors over time. Using window coverings instead of a/c can lower energy costs, and it can also lessen the strain on your area’s overworked electricity grid during summer months.
Check out the following suggestions for how to keep heat out of windows with blinds, shades, or drapes. Some factors to consider when choosing window treatments: your design style, price point, and what windows get the most sunlight, among other considerations. And make sure they are easy to operate—the Department of Energy cites one study that stated 75% of window treatments are never moved during the course of the day. You won’t reap the benefits if you don’t use your blinds, shades, or drapes, so it may pay off to explore motorization options for the ultimate in convenience.
Your windows will stay cool—and look cool—with modern, streamlined solar shades. Also called solar screens, they are the perfect answer to how to block heat from windows. Solar shades are rated by openness factor. The scale can range from 1% (tightly woven fabrics that let in little light) to 14% (a looser weave that allows more light to enter). Adding KOOLBLACK® Technology gives you even more power to block light, which reduces heat and glare. These shades are also exceptional at protecting your home’s interior from UV rays. Choose from a vast lineup of colors and styles, as well as valance, facia, and headrail options to create a stunning look.
Perhaps your home has different rooms with varying degrees of light exposure. One of the best ways to block heat from windows with this kind of custom control is installing blinds. The blinds make a cohesive, uniform style statement and yet, you can adjust each one according to specific needs: Close the slats entirely to prevent morning light from overheating your kitchen while you partially open the blinds in your west-facing bedroom for some natural light. Blinds are traditional window treatments that work well in many rooms and homes. Wood blinds provide a space with a natural touch, while faux wood blinds offer the same look in durable, easy-to-clean materials that stand up well to humid environments. Your sliding glass doors are another potential heat source, so use vertical blinds to stay cool.
The question “how to cool down my house without a/c” can be answered in two words: cellular shades. Their distinctive honeycomb pattern of cells acts as a heat-trapping barrier between your window and your interiors. Cellular shades are offered in single cell or double cell as well as in four opacity levels, from sheer to blackout, allowing you to control the amount of light your home gets as well as privacy. As with blinds, there is a vertical option to cover large windows and glass sliders.
Roman shades offer sophistication along with sunlight filtering. They work much like regular shades but are made with durable and appealing fabrics that can help insulate your home from scorching outdoor temperatures. It’s also simple to have Roman shades lined with blackout fabric to offer greater light control and privacy. Another plus for these shades: they are available with top down/bottom up lift options so that you have flexibility in positioning the shades to reduce heat.
Drapery, like Roman shades, offer cooling power through heat-absorbing fabric. Certain types of drapes can work well for temperature control indoors, such as those with a white backing and medium color—the Department of Energy states they lowered incoming heat in home by 33%. Custom drapery accommodates many kinds of window sizes and design sensibilities, with specially tailored widths and lengths. If you want to know how to block heat from windows with style, coordinate custom drapery with shades or blinds for a deluxe window treatment that is visually powerful.
Now that you know how to keep heat out of windows with the effective use of window treatments, it’s time to start shopping. Contact Stoneside and set up a free in-home consultation with one of our designers. You can discuss your goals for head reduction and energy efficiency, and see how samples would look in each room. It’s the start of a full-service, five-star experience in which we handle all the details for you. Let’s work together to heighten your home’s style quotient—and lower your utility bills!
Want to learn how automated blinds or shades can modernize your home? Contact us today for a free design consultation.