How to Save upto 25% off Your Energy Bill with the Right Window Treatments
Did you know that you can significantly reduce your heating bills this winter just by taking advantage of your existing window treatments? Although the temperatures have not hit their lowest points y...
Did you know that you can significantly reduce your heating bills this winter just by taking advantage of your existing window treatments? Although the temperatures have not hit their lowest points yet, right now is the perfect time to get ready. The best part is that little knowledge and following easy tips can go a long way in saving hundreds of dollars this winter.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, "you can choose window treatments or coverings not only for decoration but also for saving energy." So you see, I didn't say it, the Energy Department did. Naturally, I second it. Window treatments are an excellent way to save energy. They provide insulation during the cold winter months as well as repel the heat during the summer.
There are two important concepts to take away (if you want to get just a bit technical here).
1. The shading coefficient. It is a measure of the ability of the window treatment to reduce solar heat gain. The lower the number, the less solar heat will enter your home and the lower your cooling bill will be.
2. Conversely, there is another concept, called the R-value. The R-value is the measure of material's resistance to heat flow. The higher the R-value, the more the material insulates, the lower your heating bill will be.
Phew, now that we are done with this fun part, let's talk some specifics. There are several window covering options that maximize the energy efficiency of a home.
Blinds (or shutters) can reduce heat gain by as much as 45%. It is a practical option that gives you air and light flow, works to minimize harmful summer sun radiation, and maximizes heat retention in the winter. Here is a quick tip for you: when tilting your blinds closed, tilt them UP, not down
Cellular shades - arguably the best option to increase the energy efficiency of your home. Referring back to the trusted U.S. Department of Energy, the website states that, "when properly installed, window shades can be one of the simplest and most effective window treatments for saving energy." Their unique construction literally traps the air in the cells: so cold air can't enter, while heated inside air can't escape. Cell shades come in a single, double, and even triple configuration - of course the higher the cell count, the better the R value. Better yet, cell shades block 100% of U.V. rays that can fade and damage your furniture and flooring. Here is another tip: during the winter months, keep the shades or blinds on south-facing windows open during the day to allow sunlight and heat to enter the home.
Traversing (functional) draperies will trap most of the air when kept closed. As you know, all custom draperies are lined (unless they are meant to be sheers), so, similar to the cell shades from above, the air gets trapped not only by one layer of fabric, but by two! Of course, the further out your draperies clear your window on the sides, the better their insulative qualities are.
You may be in the position where blinds, shades, or draperies are just not an option for your home aesthetically. If that's your situation, consider window film. It's a unique and least obtrusive way to drop your energy costs, prevent fading, and stop other sun damage.
Which window treatments are not as effective in trapping warm air in? Sheer curtains and those shades with high openness factor (i.e. woven wood shades that have lots of holes in their pattern)
In a typical home, windows account for nearly 50% of the heat gain and loss.
Though windows are a beautiful feature in any home, they can also account for 10% to 25% of our bills - that's up to $225 going right out the window.
Ah, those windows - can't live with them, can't live without them...
But you can do something about them and save $$ in the process.
1. make sure you have the treatment that traps the air in
3. tilt your louvers UP!
Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Vita Vygovska is the owner of V2K Window Décor and a Window Treatment Expert. She helped countless clients transform their homes with decorated windows. She works via in-person, as well as virtual appointments where the client gets design ideas right on the photo. Vita is the author of "The Fast & Easy Guide to Buying and Installing Your Curtains and Drapery Panels", a DIY step-by-step manual on curtains. Visit http://www.VitaV2K.com for FREE tips and design ideas.