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Managing Heat Costs With Insulated Window Coverings

September 24th, 2021, 1:00 PM

Energy costs are on the rise. The cost of energy (heating, cooling, etc.) accounts for roughly half of a household's annual utility expenditures (Electric Power Research Institute). With costs continuing to rise and an increasing awareness of environmental issues, improved technologies have made modern insulated window coverings more energy efficient. In recent years, thermal window treatments have become more popular.

You may find that keeping your home warm and cozy during the winter months is challenging. The best way to achieve this is by adding thermal window treatments in various styles and colors. These window coverings will not only help you save money on heating bills, but they'll also add style and ambiance to any room in your house! 

Types of thermal window coverings

Insulated cellular shades

When it comes to energy savings, insulated cellular shades are a good choice if you strive for maximum comfort, privacy, and home resale value through your window coverings. Insulated cellular shades are a fantastic method to cover windows in your home. These accordion-style panels, which are insulated, may be adjusted from the top or bottom for various window sizes (or both).

Insulated cellular shades are typically thought of as the greatest R-value window coverings. Honeycomb cross-sections have air pockets that serve as insulators, keeping heat away from your home's windows by conducting it through the mesh more quickly than if no material were there at all!

It's typically a great option for individuals who want to generate their own power with comfort on top of that; privacy will also improve since there will be no outside view when you have these kinds of systems installed inside, even during daylight hours and well into the night (unless someone walks by).

Insulated cellular shades that operate on sidetracks are most effective at increasing the R-value of windows, and those that open from both the top and bottom allow users to most effectively control daylight entering the home.

There are insulated cellular shades that can be automated, allowing them to open and close based on a preprogrammed schedule. By setting the opening and closing dates according to a season, seasonal optimization can help decrease heating and cooling costs, while increasing natural light and enhancing comfort within the home.

Window quilts

Window quilts are made up of two or more layers of fabric, one of which is quilted. Whether it's Velcro or snaps, they always fit snugly against the trim. When combined with storm windows, window quilts are an excellent way to save money. 

Insulating your windows with window quilts is a low-cost method. Installing them (and removing them when the weather warms up) is relatively straightforward, and they don't pose the same problems as other window treatments; for instance, you do not have to worry about blinds or drapes becoming damaged during installation.

Quilts are less energy-intensive to heat than other window coverings because their fabric is thin and lightweight. The thermal resistance of thin fabrics is superior to that of thicker materials because they can be layered more effectively without losing any properties.

Roller/Roman shades

In a roller shade, a roller bar at the top of the window slides up and down to raise or lower the shade. When raised or lowered, roman shade fabric is folded into an even stack of folds.

The shades are typically installed inside the casing, or outside, and they come in many fabrics, colors, and weaves. Roll-up and Roman shades are most effective in blocking sunlight, offering privacy, and providing a slight boost in thermal efficiency. However, heavier fabrics provide a little more insulation.

Window blinds

Blinds with vertical slats or horizontal slats are more effective than blinds with side panels at reducing heat gain than reducing heat loss in the summer.

The gaps between the slats of interior window blinds make it impossible to regulate heat loss through these window coverings, however they provide adaptability in the summer. By adjusting the slats, you have more control over glare, light, and solar heat gain in comparison to shades.

Interior shutters

Interior shutters are a wonderful option for people who want to save a lot of money on their window coverings while still getting the benefits of comfort, seclusion, and increased home resale value. Most interior shutters are made of pleated materials that fold up, accordion-like, usually at the top of the window but sometimes at either the top or bottom. 

In general, interior shutters are usually considered the best window treatments in terms of R-value. During the winter, tightly installed interior shutters may reduce heat loss through windows by 40% or more, representing around 20% energy savings. The most effective types of interior shutters are those that open from both the top and bottom, allowing homeowners to most efficiently regulate sunshine entering their property.

Curtains and drapes

Curtains and drapes are fabric-covered exterior attachments that extend from the window to the floor.

A drape's ability to reduce heat loss and increase heat retention is influenced by a variety of factors, including the fabric type (closed weave or open weave) and color. Considering the wide range of draperies available, it is difficult to claim that they are all energy efficient. However, during the summer, shut the curtains on windows that receive direct sunlight to avoid heat gain. Studies have shown that medium-colored drapes with a white plastic backing reduce heat gains by 33%.

Draperies should be hung as close to windows as possible and draped over window sills or floors to reduce heat exchange and convection. If you want to create the best effect, hang the curtain against the ceiling or install a cornice at the top. Make sure both sides of the curtain are sealed and that the middle is overlapped.

The use of darkening curtains or blinds in rooms that require daily seclusion and light insulation could be a good idea. These spaces often include living rooms, family rooms, and bedrooms. By insulating the windows, thermal drapes and curtains add warmth to the interior of a home during the winter season.

Window films/window insulation kits

Window films reduce solar heat gain, reduce glare, and protect against ultraviolet rays. As well as blocking the sun's heat in the winter, they are best used in climates with long cooling seasons.

Window coverings that block glare and solar heat gain may be useful for homeowners who don't want to block their view with other window treatments. Additionally, they can be a good choice for windows that are difficult to cover with other insulated window coverings or areas where artwork, furniture, or carpeting could be faded by UV exposure.

It is relatively easy and cheap to insulate windows with window insulation kits. Cellophane-like sheets can be cut to fit windowpane dimensions from transparent or translucent adhesive-backed sheets. Various kits can also include black sticky strips to increase R-value and block out light.

Replacement windows from Hodges

Insulating window treatments are a great way to save on heating and cooling costs all year long. We're here with you every step of the way, from selecting the best window style and design for your home, to measuring and installing them in just one day! Our experienced team will help you make an informed decision about what works best for your needs while providing expert installation services. 

Hodges Windows & Doors is ready and able to help you find the right windows for your home, no matter what style or type of windows you want installed. If you're in the market for new window coverings, we can help! Give Hodges Windows & Doors a call or stop by our showroom today!


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