Window treatments provide quite a bit to your home, but something that we rarely give them credit for is their ability to cool down the house. Let’s face it, we recognize that they give us control of natural lighting, can provide us with privacy, and they keep the sunlight from damaging any of our interior decorations, but do we ever really give window treatments credit for cooling our home?
It’s safe to say that the cost of keeping a home cool can become overwhelming. There’s no doubt about this fact, and as temperatures rise and we start to push our HVAC units, we can almost count on that bill landing on our doorstep. If you’re looking for ways to keep your home cool, chances are you’ve done your research. Of course, most posts will mention the direction of your ceiling fan, opening windows when able, and cooking outside as often as possible.
While these are all certain ways to maintain the cool temperature of your home, we have yet to touch on the area that we know best: window coverings. While it is an area that we are passionate about and excel at, it also happens to be one of the most efficient ways to enjoy a cool home.
Close Your Blinds
Enjoying the summer sun is one of many people’s favorite parts of the summer. When the cold weather hits and all of the nature is far from blooming, we seem to regret not enjoying the sun more, so it’s not uncommon for people to have their blinds, curtains, and shades pulled wide open. Of course, this lets the natural light into your home, but what we rarely account for is the warmth that the summer sun is beaming right into your very home.
Though it might not seem as though the rays of the sun are capable of effecting the temperature inside of your home, they are one of the reasons that HVAC units have to do so much work. Between the rays of the sun that naturally beam into your home, and the magnification that occurs when they hit the glass, the heat of the sun is intensified as it enters your home, leaving the room temperature a little higher than we’d like.
While this doesn’t seem like it’d be a huge problem, when this happens, our thermostat gets the signal that it’s time to push more cool air into the home, thus pushing the HVAC to work harder. When we leave our windows open for the sun to come in, it becomes a sick cycle of heating from the sun and cool air being pushed from our HVAC, which in turn leads to a high energy bill and a house that is quite literally, hot and then cold.
Rather than suffer from the bill of this sick cycle, simply close your blinds at the time of day where the sun is at it’s highest. For most people, these are the hours that they’re at work. If you’re not going to be spending time at home, then it is especially beneficial for you to close your blinds and set your HVAC timer to start cooling before you arrive. The two paired together will certainly help you reduce the cost of air conditioning while increasing the comfort of your home.
Use Natural Light
Now, we know what you’re thinking. This contradicts everything that we just said. However, what we mean here is not necessarily what might be thinking. Natural light is great, but when it is contributing more heat to a space than the light that you’re benefiting from, it can be a lose-lose situation. However, towards the end of the day when the sun starts to set, it is much better to be benefiting from natural lighting, than it is to be using the electrical lighting in your home.
The reason behind this is that all electrical products, while they may be beneficial, do create heat when plugged in. This becomes complicated for instances like lighting. If you have natural lighting throughout the day where the rays of the sun are unlikely to come through, then this is definitely lighting that you can continue to keep in your home without worrying about it altering the temperature of your house!
Our primary point here is to minimize the use of electrical lighting towards the end of the day when temperatures have dropped and the sun is still high enough to provide you with light. THe same goes for the use of any electrical product. If you’re not using it, unplug it and let it save you some energy as well as minimize the amount of heat in your home, you’ll slowly start to see a difference as you become more and more accustomed to using the natural lighting and reducing electrical use.
Exterior Window Furnishings
Window coverings don’t just come for the interior of your home, in fact, some of the most effective window coverings that you can have to keep your home cool are on the exterior of your home. There are a few different stylings that you can choose from when it comes to exterior window coverings. For example, awnings and exterior blinds are two options that both minimize the amount of sunlight that goes into your home.
Both options can be successful with achieving this goal, but what it really comes down to is which aesthetic you’re going to like more. Awnings can provide you with more functionality if that’s something that you’re hoping to enjoy, while window coverings can quickly and easily leave your windows just as open to sunlight as they were prior to adding the covering.
This is another huge decision that you will want to speak with a professional about, simply because the pros and cons will vary between the two. There is no one option better than the other, so determining which one will be the best for you is all that it really comes down to.
Tint Your Windows
If the idea of adding a furnishing to the exterior of your home’s windows is a terrifying concept, then you can feel a little bit more comfortable knowing that it isn’t your only option. One of the more popular concepts that people who like a natural look of the window is tinting your windows.
Window tinting is a thin, tinted film that is added to the interior of your window so that sunlight is not nearly as magnified when it comes through. While the tint is going to be darker than the natural color of your window, it isn’t going to obscure the overall view of your window. The view might seem a little darker, but this is truly one of the best ways to minimize sunlight without adding a window covering at all.
One of the best things about this window treatment is that it can be paired with various of other window coverings to make the most of your windows. Pair it with high-quality curtains, plantation shutters, or any of the other window coverings that we carry, and you will have everything that you need to truly minimize the amount of energy that you need to reduce energy costs in your home.
This is another case where a professional is going to need to provide you with further information on the various options that you have. Doing this on your own can lead to bubbles in the tinting, or a film that doesn’t actually reduce the rays of the sun, so turning to a professional is truly your best option.
Zinga’s is a team of dedicated professionals that work hard to find effective solutions and designs for the homes of our clients. If you are ready to look further into ways that you can benefit from window treatments, including the various ways that we mentioned today, contact us and we would be more than happy to help you figure out which window coverings are the best for your home, and get those installed for you as soon as possible.