Anyone who owns a home or rents an apartment comes to the realization that no matter how good the windows are the R-value is not enough to prevent energy loss. Even double paned windows allow significant amounts of heat and air conduction. Glass is just not a good insulator, which is why they invented double paned windows. They operate on the theory that if you can’t keep the heat or cold out, maybe it can be trapped! But the truth is you can significantly raise the R-value of your windows by installing window insulation coverings.
Window insulation coverings serve several purposes:
o Increases the R-value of the window often by 5 points (R-1 to R-6)
o Enables control of room light
o Enhances room décor
o Adds sound proofing
Window insulation coverings keep outdoor cold or hot air out of the house and your heating or air conditioning inside. The result is a house that’s not only more comfortable, but more energy efficient. Higher energy efficiency equates to lower energy bills. Insulated window coverings are different than coverings used primarily for decoration. They are made with additional padding or space barrier and fit the window tightly.
Windows are one of the largest sources of heat and air loss which forces your heating/air conditioning unit to work harder. Energy consumption can be greatly impacted as a result, causing your utility bill to rise higher and higher. In climates with temperature extremes this can run into thousands of dollars over the course of a year.
Though the word “insulation” implies dull looking stuffing, window insulation coverings now come in a variety of decorator styles. There are balloon shades, Roman shades, accordion shades, and side draw shades to name just a few. They are usually constructed with layers that are quilted together in a way that air pockets are created forming a barrier against window seepage. Not all shades are quilted though. Other kinds of construction include heat resistant materials sewn between fabric layers, and specially designed materials that reflect heat and cold.
Window insulation coverings can include shades as discussed, but also shutters or curtain layers. In every case an additional air barrier is being created. The key to air flow control is the air pocket and making sure the covering can be tightly fitted or completely covers the window.