With East Tennessee summer in full throttle, and energy bills rising, you may be wondering if there is anything you can do to help bring down the costs of living in the hottest months of the year. Did you know that your windows are a main point in your home that can either make your energy use incredibly efficient, or significantly drain the bank? Don’t feel like you have to choose between running the AC 24/7, or practically living in a greenhouse. Here are some ways to let your windows help your home stay fresh and cool during the sweltering summer months.
Install solar film on to windows
Having solar film on the windows of your home does the same thing that it does on your car windows. Solar film darkens your windows so that less light and heat are able to pass through, allowing your home to spend less energy trying to keep up with the rising heat throughout the day.
Use thick curtains or blinds
Summer window treatments should have several layers of protection against outside heat to more efficiently protect against rising energy costs. This can be done several ways. One trick is to combine curtains or blinds with the use of solar film on windows to maximize the prevention of heat coming in. However, if your aesthetic preference does not include tinted windows, you can still reap the same benefits by using light colored blinds or curtains to block and reflect the incoming heat. Try to keep the colors of the curtains and blinds on the lighter side to trick yourself into feeling like the room is lighter, and more fresh feeling. Keep all curtains and blinds closed during the day to provide the best sun blocking effects. Although it may seem like a simple tip, up to 30 percent of unwanted heat comes from your windows, By using sun blocking window treatments you can save up to 7 percent on your bills, and on average, lower your indoor temperatures up to 20 degrees.
Take note of what windows need the most coverage
When you are considering your strategy for placing sun blocking window treatments, make sure you take note of what windows need the most coverage. South and west facing windows usually require more protection from the sun than their counterparts. Doing this will prevent you from spending too much money where it isn’t needed, and skimping on the sides that really matter.
Check for any cracks
As you are decorating your windows, take the time to check for any gaps and cracks in the structure. If windows are not properly installed and sealed up, this can let out cool air, and let in muggy outside air, making it much harder to keep your house cool. If you do find any cracks, simply close it up with a material appropriate sealant to solve the issue.
Let the night air in
Summer nights are generally much more refreshingly cool than the days. If this is the case in your home, make use of those fresh hours by cracking the windows where you sleep. You can give the AC a break, and let nature take over for a few hours. You can even get really strategic with it and make a wind tunnel by setting up your fans to create a perfect cross breeze. Be sure to remember to close your blinds and windows in the morning before the heat comes back with full force!