We’re sure we aren’t the only ones who are enjoying the warmer weather that has finally sprung up in the Greater Toronto Area. Despite the pandemic, people are loving being outdoors, gardening and taking long walks in the beach areas. With a blistery hot summer right around the corner, we’ve assembled a list of a few quick and easy tips and tricks to keep your home cooler and save on your energy bills. It’s going to be a hot one folks – so let’s stay ahead of the game!
Easy Tips, Quick Fixes
Install Solar Films – Did you know that solar films are the interior equivalent of tinted windows on your car? Yeah, we were baffled too. Just kidding, we’re in the window treatment business after all. Solar films darken your windows so that less light and heat can pass through, essentially deflecting up to between 60 and 80 % of the sun’s heat and are so much less expensive than investing in new, more energy efficient windows. Solar films provide a solution for homes with older windows and can help you save on your energy bills this summer.
Create a layer of insultation – While the best way to do this is to seal off all air leaks, it can be a difficult process. Another way to create insulation is to install well fitted, custom window treatments such as roller shades or cellular shades, which will provide that layer between your window and the interior of your home.
Create a reflective layer – While many people go about covering their windows with reflective surfaces like tin foil, another option (which in our opinion looks much better) is to hang light coloured, reflective drapery over your windows. Thick curtains or lightly coloured blinds can be purchased with a reflective surface on one side and can reflect a lot of the incoming heat during the day.
Tips for Nature Lovers
Plant trees and shrubs – If your home received a lot of sunlight, a good way to keep it cool is to go out and do some gardening! Creating a layer of shade with trees and shrubs can go a long way in keeping your home in the shade.
Open your windows – This should be a no brainer. Opening your windows during the night and allowing the cool breeze to waft in allows any warm air that has accumulated during the day to air out. Cooler nighttime air can bring down the temperature in your home almost as effectively as running your AC. Just make sure you’ve got a net on the open side, as nobody likes mosquitos.
Tips from Prime Window Coverings
Install shades – When installed properly, shades are among the simplest ways to save energy. Proper mounting as close to the window as possible creates a sealed space and protects your home from sunlight and heat gain. Even better, you can get shades which are reversible; with a white reflective surface on one side, and dark on the other. These kinds of shades can be switched with the seasons, making them perfect for Canadian temperature highs and lows.
Some of the most effective shades are roman shades and quilted shades, as they have layers of fiber which act as a better insulating air barrier.
Install blinds – Unlike with shades, blinds allow you to adjust the slats to control light and ventilation, meaning they can simultaneously control light while allowing a breeze to waft through your home. With proper mounting, blinds can reduce heat gain by up to 45%, and can reflect and redirect sunlight depending on their orientation.