Window coverings to reduce winter heat loss

We call it power dressing –  how dressing your windows with the right coverings reduces your power usage and insulates your home all year round.

It’s getting chilly, so it seems the perfect time to bring up ways that help keep you cosy in your home. And while window coverings aren’t the first thing you probably think about when it comes to keeping your home warm in winter (top of my list were aircon, fireplace, heated blanket, red wine.. oh hang on) windows are actually a huge area of heat loss in a house, but when considered and planned for correctly can actually impact on not only your warmth but your consumption of energy and reduce power bills in your home.

The facts

30% of winter heat is is lost through windows and up to 20% is through poorly insulated floor. Hmm… so the right window coverings and flooring can reduce your heat loss in winter by up to 50%. Considering a single pane of glass can lose almost 10 times as much heat as the same area of insulated wall makes it easy to see how heating bills can soar through the colder months in homes that do not have sufficient window coverings. Hello cosy home, goodbye hefty energy bills (and a cheeky high five to Mint Floors + Shutters who can help with both… just saying).

For example, the benefits of shutters are multiple… they look great, have a variety of colours/materials and are super efficient at reducing heat loss by creating complete barrier between the room and the window. When used correctly you can trap the warmth of a winters day, and lock it in by night.

 

You’re the expert

You know your home and which areas are cooler or warmer at different times of year. For me, our west-facing living room cops the brunt of the summer sun’s blaze which means awnings and shutters have been the perfect combination to reduce that heat and keep the house cooler over the summer months, the fact that they are operable means when winter rolls round it’s great to keep these window coverings open to allow that heat to penetrate the room during the day, and then shutting that heat in by closing the shutters when the sun goes down.

Your heat loss reducing heroes

Shutters are the most effective heat loss reducing window covering.  With a variety of materials and styles to suit your interiors the two we at Mint most highly recommend are:

  • PolyFusion – a timber look shutter that provides high grade insulation against sun and heat, also preventing heat loss. PolyFusion comes with a 25 year warranty and apart from cleaning requires no maintenance.
  • Aluminium in black, cream, white, silver, natural oak, red cedar and ironbark that is ideal for external usage.

Another option is Cedar shutters  which are very versatile and can be fitted to windows, sliding doors and used as room dividers. And whilst they are high on energy efficiency they do require regular maintenance and have only a 2-3 year warranty.

Blinds are most effective in reducing summer heat gain, especially if used in conjunction with highly reflective blinds and light coloured ceiling – by directing the sunlight onto the ceiling will act as a light diffuser without much heat or glare.

Exterior shutters and shades are the most effective options for reducing solar heat gain.

Awnings that are installed to shade a window from the sun’s heat and glare can reduce heat gain by up to 65% on south-facing windows and 77% on west-facing windows. By choosing opaque material in a light colour you will reflect the most heat.

Now armed with the ways in which you can keep your house cosy and your energy consumption down (you clever cookie) you can bring in the team at Mint Floors + Shutters to advise which product will best suit your home based on your requirements.

For more information for energy efficiency in your home:

https://www.energy.gov/energysaver/energy-efficient-window-attachments

https://www.yourhome.gov.au/passive-design/insulation