Shopping for window treatments is not always about choosing colour swatches or types of fabric — you also need to look at how it performs according to environmental standards. In fact, eco-friendly window treatments maximize comfort without sacrificing energy efficiency because it’s important to stay green, even when you’re relaxing at home. Let’s see whose window treatments are the greenest, and whose are not.
Make the Lighting Work for You
Keeping the lights off when it’s bright outside may sound like a simple rule, but it’s not always followed, despite the obvious savings in electricity use. There are legitimate reasons for turning on the light during the day, especially for rooms that are poorly or not at all lit by the sun. One reason why you might leave your window treatments closed regardless of the time of day is finicky or hard to use blinds, shades, or curtains. To solve this problem, repair broken window treatments so that they’re usable again, or simply replace them with ones that are more user friendly.
Use Daytime to Your Advantage
Allowing the sunlight into your home will help to heat rooms, which is generally an advantage you want to exploit during the winter whereas in the summer, keep as much light out as possible in order to combat an unwanted rise in room temperature. This is where the quality of your window treatments and windows will really come in handy:
- Well insulated windows will reduce temperature fluctuations
- Window treatments that leave few gaps will allow little light to come in and increase the temperature of the room
- Windows with specially treated glass will allow sunlight to stream inside, keeping harmful and warming types of light out without dimming the room, so it can be bright and cool inside
What about the nighttime? Well, there’s not much to help you except if you sleep with the windows open, your window treatments should be well out of the way since the airflow from outside needs to be uninterrupted.
The Trick Is In the Details
The smaller the distance between the window pane and the window treatment, the less opportunity sunlight has to heat up the air in that pocket. Additionally, dark-coloured window treatments are better at absorbing light and retaining heat than lighter coloured ones, and this is especially important for windows facing West.