Hunter Douglas

Energy Efficient Window Coverings

window covering

An energy efficient window covering for each window in your home can make the interior of your home comfortable all year by reducing the amount of energy that you lose through your windows.

About 30% of your home’s heating energy escapes through your home’s windows during the winter months, while approximately 76% of the summer sun enters your home as heat during the summer months. This, in turn, can make your home feel much colder in the winter and much warmer in the summer. Your HVAC system has to use more power to keep a constant internal temperature, which drives your energy costs up.

While all window coverings will give you energy efficiency, some of them give you more than others.

Operable window coverings (ones that you can open and close) tend to give the best energy efficiency because they give you total control over natural light, privacy, and the ability to maximize the heat from the sun during the winter and minimize heat gain during the summer.

Of the window coverings that are operable, research has shown that three-quarters of residential window coverings stay in the same position – open or closed – on a daily basis. If you are among the 75% described here, it’s time to think strategically about opening and closing your home’s window coverings.

If the weather is cold, but the days are sunny, open your window coverings – especially those that get direct sunlight – in the morning to let the sun heat your home all day long. If the weather is hot, then you’ll want to keep the window coverings that get direct sunlight closed to reduce your home’s heat gain. If you still want some natural light coming into the house through open windows, open the window coverings that don’t get direct sunlight early in the morning and late in the afternoon (the summer sun is strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.).

Window coverings that work best for energy efficiency include those that are insulated. They keep the cold out during the winter months and the heat out during the summer months.

Insulated cellular shades are the best choice for maximum energy efficiency. These window coverings, which are also known as honeycomb shades, have the highest R-values of any type of window covering. The honeycomb construction creates air pockets that trap hot air and decrease the amount of heat that is conducted through the window. Similarly, during winter months, the air pockets stop cold air from coming inside, keeping your home warmer and reducing the amount of energy needed to keep a comfortable internal temperature.

Because cellular shades can be tightly installed inside window frames, the amount of heat lost through your home’s windows can be reduced by 40% or more. This translates to an approximate 20% decrease in heating costs. When the summer months come, tightly installed cellular shades can decrease the amount of heat transferred through windows by up to 80%, which can decrease the total solar gain of your windows to 15% or less. This translates to significant reductions in your cooling costs.

For maximum solar heat gain reduction, choose cellular shades that operate on side tracks. Cellular shades that open from both the top and bottom give you maximum control over how much natural light is allowed into your home during the day.

If you’d like learn more about choosing an energy efficient window covering in Panama City Beach, FL, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at McNeill Palm. You can visit our showroom at 1191 N. Elgin Pkwy, Ste. C, Shalimar, FL 32579, or you can contact us at (850) 613-6228.

Different Styles of Window Shades

window shades

Different styles of window shades in Destin, FL give you the ability to cover the windows in your home with practicality, panache, and style. Often, when we think of window shades, we think of roller shades, which simply raise and lower on a roller, using a string or an embedded bar at the bottom of the shade. But window shades styles expand far behind the roller shades that most of us are familiar with (and even those have more options than the plain white of our early childhoods).

One style of window shades is pleated window shades. Pleated window shades are made from a type of material that is pleated so that the window shade forms an accordion-type shape. These window blinds can be raised or lowered while maintained their shape. While pleated window blinds look much like Venetian blinds, they provide a softening effect on windows. Pleated window blinds are manufactured using a sturdy paper or fabric.

Another style of window shade is cellular, also known as honeycomb, shades. Cellular window shades are made of many different types of materials, including wood, synthetics, and fabric. Cellular window shades feature a front section and a back section. When placed together, the cell or honeycomb structure is created. The structure of these window shades makes them excellent for light control, insulation, and soundproofing. They come in different cell sizes, which enables them to be used throughout your home in a variety of ways.

Roman window shades are made from fabric or materials such as seagrass and jute. There are a variety of types of Roman window shades, but their predominate feature is the same: as the window shade is raised up, it folds onto itself, creating a beautiful effect when the window shade is raised all the way up. The downside to the beautiful effect of a raised Roman window shade is that the material can obscure some of the view out of the window. However, this is seldom a problem because a large portion of the window is unobstructed. Roman windows can also be lined with materials that can provide blackout capabilities and insulation capabilities.

Roller window shades have graduated from the simple white shades that were popular in the 1970s and 1980s. These window shades are now made from both natural and synthetic materials, come in a wide variety of styles and colors, and can fit almost any size window. Valances, fascias, and cornices are often used to dress up roller window shades and hide all of the moving parts. Roller window shades can also be fitted with thermal and blackout linings.

Tie-up window shades offer a decorative touch to any window. When the window shade is rolled up, the extra pieces of material on either side of the window shade are used to hold it in place.

Solar window shades can be used indoors or outdoors (on porches or patios). Solar window shades provide reduction in sunlight, heat, glare, and ultraviolet rays, which makes the areas where they are installed cooler and protects them from the damage of constant exposure to the sun. Solar window shades, however, do not obscure the outside view, so they really are an excellent choice for cooling things down without losing light or the landscape.

If you’d like to learn about different styles of window shades in Destin, FL, you can speak with our experienced staff at McNeill Palm. You can come to our showroom at 1191 N. Elgin Pkwy, Ste. C, Shalimar, FL 32579, or you can call us at (850) 613-6228.

Different Types of Plantation Window Shutters

window shutters

Plantation window shutters in Destin, FL are characterized by their wide louvers (usually 3 ½ to 4 ½ inches wide) and the elegant look they give to any room they are used in. Plantation window shutters can be used throughout your home and, although white is a popular color, they can also come in other colors and stains to add a touch of flair.

Plantation window shutters are manufactured in three different types of materials: vinyl, composite, and wood.

Vinyl plantation window shutters don’t have any wood in them. Instead, PVC or aluminum supports are used to give them stability. They are weather-resistant and work extremely well in areas where the humidity is high most of the time. Vinyl plantation window shutters come in a variety of styles.

One style is hollow vinyl. Plantation window shutters are constructed with hollow vinyl frames. While these have the benefits of vinyl, you are limited in the size of the plantation window shutters because the hollow frame can’t support as much weight as other styles of frames.

Another style is structured hollow vinyl. With this style, plantation window shutters are made with a vinyl skeleton include inside the shutters to support their weight. This reduces the tendency of the vinyl to sag and creates better structural integrity.

Solid vinyl plantation window shutters have a vinyl frame filled with blown PVC, which makes them more stable and able to support more weight.

Another style is solid vinyl with an aluminum insert. Plantation window shutters made in this style offer a heavier-duty support and weight-bearing option.

Vinyl-clad wood plantation window shutters have a wood frame that is wrapped with vinyl. Not only do you get the durability and strength that wood gives, but you also get the moisture resistance from the vinyl exterior coating.

Composite plantation window shutters are made from medium-density fiberboard (MDF) and then wrapped in a PVC or vinyl coating. These are durable and sturdy, which means they can support more weight, and they are also resistant to the damaging effects of weather and high humidity.

Wood plantation window shutters are constructed out of wood. Basswood is the most common choice of wood because it offers the highest strength-to-weight ratio. This makes the plantation window shutters lightweight and strong at the same time, which is optimal.

The advantage of wood plantation window shutters is that you have more flexibility in their application. Since wood can be custom-sized and custom-shaped and painted or stained, wood plantation window shutters can be fitted to any window in the home and painted or stained any color you can choose. Vinyl and composite plantation window shutters do not give the same leeway, since they are premade into styles, sizes, and colors.

No matter which style of plantation window shutters you choose, you are sure to be pleased with how they transform your home into a comfortable and welcoming place where your friends and family love to gather because the style, which is classic and classy, puts them at ease. You’ll also be pleased with how much light control you have, how easy plantation window shutters are to maintain, and how they remind timeless even when you update the style or décor of your home.

If you’d like learn more about plantation window shutters in Destin, FL, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at McNeill Palm. You can visit our showroom at 1191 N. Elgin Pkwy, Ste. C, Shalimar, FL 32579, or you can contact us at (850) 613-6228.