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5 Cheap Ways to Block Heat from Windows

A living room with covered windows.

Summer has arrived and the sun is out for many long hours. The warm weather is often very inviting and there are so many activities that you want to do during this time. However, with summer comes an abundance of heat, and while you are out at the beach or park this heat is welcome, but when you are at home indoors, you will want to stay at a comfortable temperature. Your windows, being made out of glass, are often the culprit in letting in so much unwanted heat. As sunlight passes through them, they amplify the heat in a process called solar heat gain and this creates a greenhouse effect indoors. There are several ways to combat this effect, and we would like to share them with you.

Reduce Glare with Aluminum

Aluminum is a reflective material. It can deflect the sunlight back out during the day and prevent the heat build up it causes. By purchasing aluminum at a local supermarket, you can cut it up and tape it onto the glass. Aluminum is inexpensive and has uses in many applications, including cooking. Furthermore, placing it on your glass windows is a temporary measure and you can remove it for something more permanent or after the hot days of summer.

Cardboard to Stop the Sun

Similar to aluminum, cardboard is very cheap and can be used as a temporary stop gap against the sun. In fact, you don’t even need to purchase cardboard on its own, you can often get it from empty cereal boxes and other food cartons. By blocking the sun out, you reduce the heat produced by the sunlight and cardboard boxes are often made out of materials that do not allow light to pass through.

Solar Roller Shades for Light Filtering

The two above methods represent a temporary solution and a not very aesthetically pleasing way to block the heat from your windows. While they are effective, you can find a way to block out the sunlight in a more appealing way. Allow us to introduce you to solar shades. They are a type of roller shade that allows natural light to come in through the fabric, but it does so in a muted fashion and helps reduce the amount of heat generated by the light.

Solar fabrics are weaved in a way that allows you to see through to the side where there is more light. So during the day, you will have a view of the outdoors and enjoy the sunshine. They are also given in different levels and are often represented by a percentage, where the lower percentages are less see-through and mute the light more, while the higher percentages do the opposite.

Unlike aluminum or cardboard, these shades are useful for far longer than just a few weeks. This fact will remove the need for you to constantly have to place the aluminum or cardboard on your windows, saving you money in the long run. Furthermore, solar shades are very durable and only require a regular wipedown to keep them in good condition, giving your windows a permanent window shade for many years to come.

Grey solar shades on three windows.

Cellular Shades to Insulate

If you want further insulation from your window covering, then cellular shades are the one for you. With its hexagonal pockets, they trap air within the shade’s structure, creating a barrier at your window and preventing hot or cold outdoor air from coming in. It can help with energy efficiency in two ways, first, the aforementioned air blocking, and second, the prevention of solar heat gain.

During summer’s dog days, the sun will really beat down on the ground level, and if your home is surrounded by a lot of tarmac, it will really bake the air near the ground. This air tends to find a way into your home via the glass windows. So with cellular shades, you can really cut down on your use of your air conditioning and help your energy bill. They represent a small investment that will help pay for itself many times over during its long lifespan.

Curtains for Room Darkening

Traditional window curtains and drapes can be just as effective in heat blocking at your windows as your modern shades. To block out the heat, you will need to find materials that block out more sunlight, so you will want to avoid sheer fabrics. Drapes are relatively cheaper than blinds and shades and are easier to replace if required. Just like the above methods, you simply need to block out the sunlight with something and you will help prevent the solar heat gain and help keep your home’s interior comfortable.

Beat the Heat

Summer brings with it excess sunlight and an abundance of heat. If both of those things are not for you, then you will want to stay away and keep cool inside. Investing in methods to keep the sunlight out like blackout curtains will help keep you cool and help save you money in less use of air conditioning. With that, you will be able to help reduce your carbon footprint and save some money to boot. So beating the summer heat will have multiple positive effects, so find a way to do so today.

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