Besides the obvious aesthetic reasons why a home needs window treatments, there are also other, more functional roles played by curtains, drapes, shutter, shades or solar panels. Most often overlooked, window treatments help not only increase your privacy, but also improve your UV protection and energy efficiency. Do you know how much money you are saving just by installing the right window treatment? It could even be thousands, depending on the number of windows you have in the home!
Below are just three of the many ways the right window treatment can help you save money. But, we’re taking it a step further today. In the second section, we’ll be suggesting some Eco-friendly window treatments to help you make a more informed decision. So, stick around!
How window treatments help you keep more money in your wallet:
1. Energy Efficiency
It’s been found that a home loses nearly 50% of its cooling and heating energy through the windows. You can hear the sound of money flying out of your pockets, already. So, what you need to do is add more insulation to your home. But, considering the high cost of such an attempt, it’s much less expensive to have draperies, blinds or shades. Keep them closed during hot, summer days or chilly, winter nights to help maintain the perfect home climate without having your furnace or air-conditioning unit work overtime or even non-stop.
No matter the window treatment you choose, you’ll get some degree of temperature control. However, for max energy efficiency, window treatments with cellular constructions (i.e. honeycomb shades) are more preferred. They will prevent heat from entering (in the summer) and the warm air from escaping (in the winter). This is because these window treatments have distinct pockets that trap the air.
Tip: You can also layer shades or blinds with drapes and have more climate control.
Related Articles: 1. How to choose the best window treatment for my home.
2. Increased Privacy and Protection
Without a window treatment, your home’s valuable possessions will look like store window displays. This is dangerously inviting to people that would want to harm you. Burglars can easily enter and know exactly what to take and where to take it from.
One of the most common places with bare windows is the garage that allows potential robbers to take a quick peek and peer in to access your home and get a hold of your expensive valuables, including your car. Needless to say, the selection of the family car speaks much of the status of its owner. So, if you drive around with a fancy car, aspiring burglars will assume the stuff inside your home match in value.
But, what can you do if you want to have privacy without making your home feel like a dungeon? Yes, some people feel like that with their windows completely drawn. In this case, you can install sheer window treatments that allow natural light to enter the room and offer protection against peeking eyes at the same time.
3. Protection from the harmful UV rays
Everybody loves the lifting effect of natural light in a room. However, the sun’s UV rays cause damage to your furniture, wood floors, carpeting and home finishes. This is why, over time, the colors of the curtains, rugs, and furniture fade and wooden floors become more fragile. Replacing them is out of the question for most of us, especially when they have not served their purpose to the fullest. Not to mention the damage cause on pieces of original artwork that decorate some walls. Such valuables are just irreplaceable. And truth be told, if damage is done, reversing it is next to impossible.
Notes: If you live in very hot climates, you may want to consider using black out curtains. They will allow you to redirect the UV rays from entering your space and causing damage. For cold climates, thermal curtains are ideal and help keep the cold air outside. If you don’t live in an area with extreme climate, you can use decorative window treatments, such as sheers that give a warm and pleasant lighting glow to the room, and drawback ties. Also, with screen shades, you can save yourself from all the trouble as they filter more than 75% of UV rays while also allowing you to have unblocked views of the outdoors.
Eco-friendly window treatments
Eco-conscious homeowners appreciate window treatments made from natural fibers and recycled materials, as well as wood that’s been harvested from sustainable forests. Since indoor air quality is extremely important to most of us, choosing products that don’t emit dangerous chemicals is critical.
Yes, every material has an environmental impact to some degree. But, there are some of them that are easier on the planet than others. Undeniably, vinyl, acrylic, polyester and all petrochemical-based synthetics, as well as PVC, are harmful. If you want to steer clear of them, there are plenty of options available. For example, you can select window treatments from hemp, silk, cotton or linen.
There are also premade organic curtains and drapes, although you could easily find organic fibers and have a professional sew the curtains or even do it yourself! Other great options include recycled polyester fabrics that are excellent for draperies.
In the late 90s, manufacturers of vinyl blinds or also referred to as Venetian blinds were adding lead to the plastic. Over time, as the vinyl blinds were exposed to sunlight and heat, the vinyl formed lead dust on its surface. That was very dangerous, especially for children that were at high risk of lead poisoning, given their natural tendency to touch everything, including the blinds, and then put their hands in their mouths. After 1996, though, blinds are made lead-free. So, if you have blinds bought and placed before 1996, it’d be advised to just throw them away, especially of you have small kids. Put them in a plastic bag and either take them to the nearest household hazardous waste collection facility or dump them in the trash. For the same reason, it’s wise not to buy used blinds, too.
1. For bedrooms, it is suggested you add window treatments such as shades, rollers, blinds or curtains with a light-blackout liner so you can enjoy a good night’s sleep without getting your circadian rhythms disrupted by passing vehicles, streetlights or the floodlight next door.
2. If you have members of the family with asthma or allergies, plantation-style shutters that don’t allow too much dust to accumulate on them are ideal. Just make sure they come with wide louvered slats. They are much easier to dust and clean than, for example, velvet drapes. Now, if you want to have curtains, choose materials that you can toss them in the washer.
If you add up all the benefits (to your health, the Earth, and your wallet), you can understand why the selection of the right window treatment is a big deal and how much money you are indeed saving from making informed decisions, right?