Swirling winds, brisk days and a sharp light descending into low angles remind us to prepare for the winter chill. Window coverings are one of the best ways to create an energy efficient home, keeping warmth in while reducing your heating bills, yet still style your home in good taste. Cellular shades are the optimum window covering to blanket your windows and remain our number one favorite performing shade to retain room heat. As a reminder, cellular shades contain those wonderful little “honeycomb” packets that trap heat to block out the cold and regulate inside temperatures. Cellulars can either be single cell or double cell but we do not recommend the triple cell as it is so heavy. A double cell cellular shade will give you double the insulation protection, but you should also be aware of other important considerations.
I don’t want to go to “techie” on you, but there are two aspects to consider when figuring out how to increase energy efficiency. One is the R Value which refers to the shade’s ability to shield the cold air from coming in. A higher R-Value indicates a more robust insulating shade to keep your energy bills low. A good R Value varies from 4.76 to 4.55. Solar Heat Gain Efficiency (SHGC) is the other factor, which is a measure of how much solar energy enters into your home. SHGC is expressed as a number between 0 and 1. This is a tricky number. To keep your house warm in the winter and especially in northern climates, a higher SHGC is preferred so the sun’s energy can be used for heating. A number 0.15 to 0.19 is desired, but for homes in warmer areas, a lower number is better, from 0.12 to 0.10 to reduce unwanted heat buildup. You will need to manage how this affects your desired home comfort coupled with the weather. However, both the R value and the SHGC can be balanced to lower your energy bill as much as possible to maximize the efficiency of any particular cellular shade. But don’t let all this mumbo jumbo science dissuade you from maintaining a warm home. All you really need to know is that cellular shades can deliver up to a 22% reduction in heat transfer during the winter months. Every cell shade has varying amounts of protection, so if you are serious about energy efficiency, do your homework. Investigate how the above two elements, along with the type of window (hopefully double pane), plus your choice of window covering adds up to a warm home. No matter what, a cellular shade can be a snug down comforter for your windows.
For a real dynamo at keeping you warm this winter, consider the Bali Midnight Cellular Shade that is made of three layers, complete with a Mylar liner that is sealed between two layers of a soft, high-grade fabric which forms a thick barrier for superior insulation. Browse all of the many other kinds of cellular shades in every color, pattern, style to enhance your shades with all the extras for added design and ease of operation. Don’t forget that even in winter, the sun can harm your fabrics on furniture, pillows and rugs. The Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) represents how well a fabric protects from harmful UV rays. To keep all of your favorite decor items from fading, select a cellular shade fabric that has a good UV rating. UV ratings range from 15-50 with the higher number offering you the best fade resistant value. An excellent UV rating is 35-50; very good is 25-35; good is 15-25.
Cellular shades have earned their stellar reputation for a sleek minimal look, for our custom sizes from long and skinny to arches to skylights to patio doors, vibrant color or muted shades, and even lively intricate patterns. Cellular shades that are customized for your home can disappear from view or seamlessly roll down for the long days ahead. But as the season reveals its winter face, cellular shades can really reduce your energy bills, which is a present that keeps on giving!