How to Block Heat from Windows
As the last of the snow melts and spring makes its appearance, you know that summer is not too far away. Before you know it, summer comes knocking at your door and you brace yourself for the hot months ahead. There are some areas that experience particularly harsh summers. You find ways to keep yourselves and your homes cool. You may have an air conditioner installed in your home, but it’s more important to reduce the incoming heat itself. In other words, you need to explore ways you can lock the sun out from your windows because your windows are the main source of heat transfer in your home. While during winter the warm air is likely to escape through poorly insulated windows, during summer this same hot air uses the windows to flow into the rooms, making the insides hot and sultry. If you have the air conditioners working then this succeeds only in escalating your energy bills. With hot air flowing in, the air conditioners have to overwork to keep the temperatures low inside the house.
Ways to Block Heat
To put a check on your rising electricity bills during summer you can try some tricks to prevent heat gain through windows. You have to take measures to block heat from the windows and this can be done in several ways. It is not easy or cheap to change your windows. What you can do is treat them and equip them adequately and effectively to keep the heat away from the windows and we have compiled a list of cheap but effective ways you can do this.
External Window Shades & Awnings
As the temperature outside rises the glass windows have a tendency to absorb heat and then transmit it into your house and make it hot and uncomfortable. To prevent this you can use sun blocking window treatments like shades and blinds.
Exterior Solar Shades
Exterior Solar shades are perfect for your needs. They are a combination of style, elegance, and functionality. Water-resistant and energy-efficient solar shades are specifically made to block out the heat before they enter your house. Interior shades are good but not as effective. The exterior solar shades as the name suggests are mounted on the outside. This means that when the sun is beating down hard, it is not the windows but the shades that face the heat. The solar shades absorb this heat which is then dissipated or simply reflected back. As they are made of extremely durable fabrics they can withstand the onslaughts of the changing climatic conditions outside.
Instead of external shades, you can also opt for awnings. These are installed outside just above the windows and they jut out. This helps to cover the top part of the windows. They help to prevent the sun’s rays from hitting the glass windows. So while they help to keep out the rays of the sun and the heat they do not obstruct your outside view. Awnings are available easily and can be installed by the homeowners themselves.
Cellular Honeycomb Shades
While exterior solar shades are excellent options, there are some interior shades that can also help in blocking heat. Cellular honeycomb shades are extremely versatile and owing to their honeycomb design, they help trap hot air in the honeycomb pockets and prevent heat from flowing inside the house. Adding sidetracks to your shades to block out light gaps can also help in blocking out more heat. When choosing shades and blinds for the summer months, opt for light colors like beige or white as they help to reflect the sun’s rays. Dark colors absorb the sun’s rays and then transmit them into the house.
Blackout blinds are another very effective means of blocking out the sun and prevents the heat from flowing past them. For windows that get a lot of sunlight during the summer months, blackout blinds are perfect for them. Most of the fabric used for curtains and blinds allows some light and heat to pass through but the blackout blinds completely block them. In this category, there are many stylish options available that help to complement your rooms and existing décor.
Exterior shutters are just as effective in blocking out heat for the window that receives a lot of heat during summer. Shutters cover the entire window and are quite foolproof. There are different styles of exterior shades available to meet your requirements. Interior window shutters are also effective and they look stunning too. They offer total privacy and light blockage. Plantation wood shutters help to block almost 99% of UV rays when the louvers are closed.
Heat Reducing Window Film
This is a quite cheap way to keep heat away from your rooms. There is special heat reducing and insulating plastic films available in the market which has to be applied to the window glass. When it is attached to the inside of your windows the window film creates a small air space like bubble wraps. While they may not be as effective as your blinds and shades if you have enough film to cover all our windows they can make some difference in keeping out the heat.
All the above means of strengthening your window’s defense against heat gain are effective, but none of them can be foolproof. It is an attempt to get as close as it is possible in blocking out heat. You can use a combination of measures discussed above if your budget permits. You can also do other things, such as plant lots of trees in and around the house. They are the cheapest and the most effective way of reducing heat gain and they also help enhance the aesthetic appeal of your home.