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Why Are Shutters So Energy Efficient?

1024 768 Gordon Smith

Homes are much warmer these days. Here in London, we experience temperatures up to 10c warmer than the rest of the UK, due to the Urban Heat Island effect which causes the sun’s rays to be absorbed by hard surfaces and reflected back, rather than being soaked up naturally.

Keeping our homes comfortable is on all our minds, both in terms of heating in winter and cooling in summer. But the cost of energy is soaring. Energy bills are set to rise even higher than previously predicted this autumn, according to Ofgem, so it makes sense to do everything possible to reduce the amount of energy we use.

Glazing is the weakest leak in the chain when it comes to thermal insulation. Heat gain and loss through windows accounts for 25-30% in residential heating/cooling. It’s no surprise that many of us are thinking about installing shutters or blinds as soon as possible. Not only do they look great but also improve insulation quality too.

Single glazing is well known for not being energy efficient, but around 23% of the UK’s housing stock is still single glazed. For those living in conservation areas, changing windows is not always straightforward and in any case, upgrading to double glazing can be expensive.

When combined with double glazing, shutters can reduce heat loss by 64%. But even without double glazing, there are significant energy savings to be had – good news for those of us who are not ready to go double glazed.

Another option is honeycomb blinds, which are our most energy efficient type of blind. These can reduce heat loss by up to 60s% compared with a single glazed window alone.

How to maximise energy efficiency with your shutters

Half open window shutters

Keep shutters closed in direct sunlight

Reducing heat loss in winter

Shutters have been proven to reduce heat loss by up to 64%, when combined with double glazing. A massive energy saving. In winter, open your shutters in the morning to soak up as much solar energy as possible, and close them at night to trap warm air inside.

Reducing heat ingress in summer

Shutters are amazing at keeping heat out. Keep shutters closed when the window is in full sunlight, to stop direct sunlight coming in. Make sure you keep your shutters closed during the day when you are out of the house so that the room is as cool as possible when you return. When the window is in shade, its time to open the shutters and windows to allow cool breezes to flow.

If you have double glazing, there’s an added benefit because they reduce solar energy transmittance significantly.

Switch off HVAC

There are few appliances that guzzle more energy than heating, ventilation, and air conditioning units (HVAC). Consider installing shutters instead of installing HVAC appliances. Where possible, reduce the use of HVAC by using shutters intelligently, as described above.

Honeycomb blinds are an alternative energy efficient window covering

Honeycomb blinds are another energy efficient solution

Reduce lighting bills

Because shutters are so flexible, they can be a lighting solution all of their own. Open fully to allow the most light in so that you can keep your internal lights switched off.

For those of us working from home, we may get less exposure to natural sunlight than before. Insufficient daylight can cause an array of problems including eyestrain, headaches and reduced vitality. Natural daylight has been shown to be more beneficial to mental health than artificial light.

The sweet spot when it comes to working is between 19° and 23°. Solar shading such as shutters can help to keep within that comfort range without the use of artificial heating and cooling.

Reduce CO2 emissions

We’re all looking for ways to reduce CO2 emissions, and studies have shown that if we all installed solar shading solutions, we could reduce CO2 emissions by 80 million tonnes per year.

Did we mention they look great?

Shutters are one of the most popular window treatments for a reason: they look beautiful. Combining classic elegance and modern appeal, there’s a shutter style to suit any taste.

Because shutters are made from durable materials like wood and vinyl, they can provide years of lasting beauty with minimal maintenance. Whether you’re looking for a new way to dress up your windows or you’re interested in saving money on your energy bills, shutters are worth considering.

Contact us for more information and a free quote