When you choose drapery for a window, you will likely consider whether they will keep the sun out of your eyes and how the curtains will dress up a room. While you should consider these criteria when choosing curtains, you should also look at how they will contribute to your heating, cooling, and cleaning needs.
Cutting Cooling Costs
Windows are one of the weak points of the average home’s insulation envelope. In fact, windows contribute up to 30% of the heat gain in a home. Thus, if you have a lot of light streaming into your home through your windows, you are making your AC system work harder than it should have to. Thermal curtains have a layer of metal foil inside them which will reflect the sun’s energy back outside before it has a chance to heat up your home.
Help with Heating
The same heat gain that is problematic during the summer can reduce the strain on your furnace during the winter. Thus, you will want to keep thermal curtains open during the day but shut them at night. The foil in the curtains makes a barrier between the cold coming through windows and the heat emanating from your furnace vents. Thus, thermal curtains can be a year-round asset to your HVAC system.
A third benefit of draperies has nothing to do with heating or cooling your home. Draperies tend to attract and hold dust. Thus, if you have a room that seems to get dusty a lot, hanging draperies can help to reduce how often you have to attack the room with a duster. On the other hand, to preserve the color and integrity of your draperies, you will want to clean them from time to time. Shaking out the curtains will just create a mess in the room you were trying to keep dust free, so you should throw them in the wash instead. If you use a curtain material that should not be washed in the regular wash, then use a vacuum to keep the dust at bay.
Draperies are not all about style and keeping the sun out of your eyes. While not every curtain will help with preventing heat gain, as long as you are planning on hanging curtains in a room, why not use thermal curtains and reduce your HVAC costs with your choice? A smart choice of curtains and draperies can provide a real asset to your home.
For draperies, contact an interior designer or do an online search.