Many people are aware that the windows in their homes are one of the most important areas to consider for energy efficiency, and by extension a key opportunity to save money. In fact, windows are responsible for 25-30% of heat gain and loss in residential heating.
The effect of a window depends on the time of year, but how that window is dressed is also a vital element to control how much heat is gained or lost within a room, very few realise the impact that this dressing can have. Making an effective window dressing choice will benefit a home year-round, helping to keep rooms cool in the summer, and trapping heat in the winter to minimise heating requirements. Of the popular dressing options available, interior window shutters and blinds are the most effective and versatile of these choices, with a long list of benefits on offer too.
Interior window shutters are commonly installed in a louvred style which gives a brilliant versatility of use. These louvres, or slats, and the shutter panels can be operated in different ways to make the most energy efficient option for the window dressing no matter the time of year.
During hotter periods of weather, shutter panels and louvres can be used to filter out the most intense UV and solar rays from a room which slows the rate at which it heats up. A window can also be opened behind the shutter panels to cool the space, with the louvres tilted to allow a breeze through the room whilst still blocking enough light to not overheat the space. White finishes on shutters are particularly effective for reflecting solar and UV rays off the surface, so the panels physically bounce some of the light and the heat from the outside to stop the room over-heating.
When the winter months draw in, the addition of wooden shutters or other material options creates an additional layer in front of the window which stops energy being lost from the area – this is called the U Value. The lower the U value of a window the better and shutters have the potential to improve a window’s U Value by up to 40%.