Blackout curtains can be very effective at blocking heat from coming into your home during the summer months. They work by preventing solar heat from reaching the inside of the room, which will cause it to heat up. When you’re selecting your blackout curtains, it’s important to pick a light-colored fabric because they reflect heat rather than absorb it as a dark fabric would. To ensure your blackout curtains are effective, you should make sure they are thermally insulating curtains, as some blackout curtains will block light, but they don’t block heat effectively.
It is also important to make sure the curtain properly fits your window. If it’s letting light in, it’s letting heat in. Blackout shades are another good option if you prefer shades over curtains. The downside of blackout curtains or shades is they may block more light than you’d like. They will also not be as effective if your home is poorly insulated, and they will not make improper insulation.
Window film is another great option to prevent heat from coming in. Special reflective films for your home’s windows block most of the heat from the sun that hits your windows. This is a great option if you want to be able to see out of your windows during the day and let in natural light to your space.
According to the DoE, the best option for preventing heat gain is through insulated cellular shades. Many of these have the highest thermal resistance of all types of window coverings. Just like the way a double-pane window works, a cellular shade uses an air pocket as insulation to prevent the transfer of heat.
Some Other Tips:
- One very effective way of keeping the cool air in is to ensure that your doors and windows have a good seal. Check around the seals and see if you can feel any air leakage coming through.
- Your ceiling fan could also be blowing in the wrong direction, which would pull the hot air down, rather than push it up. In the summer, your ceiling fan should be set to rotate counterclockwise.
Any of these measures will help prevent the loss of the cool air in your home, letting your air conditioner run less and lowering your electric bill.