The Inside Scoop at CellularWindowShades.com

Posts Tagged ‘savings on cooling and heating costs

Talking with a gent from Ontario the other day, the conversation turned to which skylight system he might use for his “conservatory / garden room” (the room pictured below from Anglian Home Improvement’s website) .

garden room

These are great spaces to have, and yet they can be excessively cold in winter and overheated in summer. The Ontario conservatory / garden room is HUGE: 23-feet by 13-feet.

Initially, his size – per overhead opening – was 34-inches (width) x 54-inches (length). This meant he could use either our Balcony Skylight or Daylight Skylight shades.

So what IS the difference between the two systems?

The BIG difference is SIZE – a Balcony Skylight Shade can be no wider than 48-inches and no longer than 96-inches — yet as the shade gets wider, it must also get shorter to fit in our production parameters. For instance, a shade 36-inches wide can be 96-inches long; but a shade 42-inches wide should be no longer than 84-inches, and a shade as wide as 48-inches should be no longer than 72-inches.

This photo from our website shows a typical “Balcony Skylight” installation (the window shades, of course, we also manufacture):

Bedroom - cellular shades & skylights

A Daylight Skylight Shade, on the other hand, can have a maximum width of 96-inches, a maximum length of 120-inches. Again, however, the length of any given shade will be dictated by its width: the wider the shade, the shorter the length must be to be within spec.

This photo shows a typical “Daylight Skylight” installation:

Daylight4

These shades are quite long, fairly broad.

The larger-size shown here can be accommodated because of a “framing” structure. The physical differences in the shades can be better understood from the installation instructions for the two types of Skylight Shades. I always recommend that people look them over, if for nothing else, the schematic of each “broken down” shade which shows all the parts and how they fit together.

But back to my Ontario man.

Technically, he could go with either system – a 34 x 54 (w x l) is possible with both the Balcony and the Daylight systems. The first is going to have brackets at the top and bottom of the shade; a moving middle shade allows the shade to open and close. The second will have a frame assembled on site and the entire unit is then lifted into place. Of necessity the pricing structures differ.

I invite you — if you have a skylight application in need of some warming up (winter) or cooling off (summer), to get yourself a price quote for either the Balcony Skylight Shade or the Daylight Skylight Shade — or both!

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The Green Building Forum, in the UK, featured this recent Q&A session about blinds. One forum-poster, JT, confessed “I think I’ve been so fixated on heat loss that I hadn’t given thought to avoiding overheating.”

With July temperatures already wilting many communities, OVERheating — through glass found in windows, patio doors, and skylights — is a concern.

Of exceptional interest is James’s link to this article on Thermal Performance of Traditional Windows. I have “original” windows in my modest Cape-style home here in Vermont, and have blogged a couple of times about the value and also the historic desirability of original sash windows (never mind the landfill conundrum). This article actually uses the phrase “evidence is available to counteract some of the misconceptions about the energy efficiency of original timber sash windows“. They advocate simple repairs and “basic improvements”.

In point number 3, where there is discussion of curtains and “roller blinds”, imagine how much more effective and efficient those windows could be with Cellular window shades. We’ve got data to back up our assertions: Check out our R-values for Cellular Shades page.

If the UK strives to target U-value for windows of 2 or below then more windows should be covered by Cellular Shades: “To compare R-value and U-factor, divide 1 by the U-factor number,” says the site Efficient Windows.org. Using this to get an R-value for “high performance double-pane windows” -> with a U-factor of 0.30 on average – that equates an R-value of 3.33.

This R-value is desirable: and what comes close is the Light Filtering Cellular Window shade fabric, with an R-value of 2.8.

Add side tracks to that same shade and you’ve raised the R-value to 3.3 — and tied that “high performance double-pane” window.

Use Black Out fabric rather than Light Filtering fabric and you up those values even more: R-value of 4.0 and, if you add side tracks, 4.7.

These numbers are for SHADE ALONE. Once you factor in the window itself, you’re potentially reaching R-values in the range of 8.2.

So how does all this help with keeping OUT the hot weather, as well as keeping in HEAT during the winter months?

English Heritage has produced a video Sash Windows – Why They Are Worth Keeping. The same link also gives access to a couple of well-thought-out publications on improving thermal performance.

It’s a two-way street: What improves to keep heating inside rather than dissipating to the outdoors also helps keep the sweltering outdoor temperatures from impacting your internal temperature. If outdoor heat doesn’t enter your premises, then your cooling system — whether a/c units or fans — can relax and work much less.

CellularWindowShades.com offers the following “Handy Info” pages:

* * *

“There is nothing quite like walking into a cool room on a hot day…”

If you answer the following question, with a YES, maybe it’s time
to research Cellular Shades and Skylights:

Do you start your air conditioning early in the morning,
and run it all day??

(for A Cooler You, Click on the link or photo)


CellularWindowShades.com

Your Source for Insulating Cellular Shades

CWS offers custom-made cellular shades in both double and single cell light-filtering or blackout fabrics.

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