When the hot weather hits, it can be hard to get relief from the mugginess of summer without cranking the AC and running the fans all day. But did you know that a bit of simple window prep can actually help you save money during the hottest months? When it comes to protecting your home from the heat, it doesn’t just help to choose the right windows for your home. Even if you invest in windows that save energy, you’ll still need to put in extra work to make sure you don’t get stuck in a sweatbox this summer. Fortunately, with a bit of elbow grease, you can get your home summer-ready in just a few steps. If you’re committed to keeping cool and dry this summer, here are a few tips for prepping your home windows during the muggy season.
Keep Windows Clean
Keeping a cool, comfortable home during the muggiest months starts with clean windows all around. That’s right: It’s not enough to just strip your home of its old storm windows and apply lighter, more summer-friendly options. You have to make sure you’re taking the opportunity to give your windows a thorough cleaning to protect against unwanted grime buildup. It’s not just about making sure your windows stay streak-free and spotless. Cleaning your windows each season will give you the chance to thoroughly inspect them for damage, apply a sun-protective coating, check the middle panel for any signs of a gas leak or structural damage, and remove old weatherstripping that could be causing other problems with air flow. A dirty window isn’t just unpleasant to look at it. All that extra grime could actually cause issues with the way your window works. In the middle of the summer, you don’t want to be caught with a faulty window or a ton of sudden repairs. Take this opportunity to prep your window before the hot spells start and save yourself the time and stress.
Use Shades and Awnings
When the hot days and nights hit, you’ll need all the protection from the elements you can get. That goes for your windows, too. When windows are subjected to the straight-on glare from the sun, they’re less effective at blocking out the heat and keeping your home cool. That results in higher AC usage and higher bills. If you want to make your windows the most effective they can be, help them out by installing awnings, blinds, and drapes that can help protect windows from the glare. You’ll still be able to take advantage of the daylight, you’ll just have more control over what kind of sun exposure you get during the day. For higher-up rooms in the home, for instance, installing awnings is a great way to avoid that harsh midday glare. If you have a home that’s painted a dark color, you’ll want to protect it from heating up too quickly, either by installing protective drapes or blinds. Awnings will also help you keep your windows open a crack during the daytime for an extra bit of relief. You won’t have to worry about hot air blowing through, you’ll simply be able to take advantage of the extra ventilation without keeping the fans on all day.
Protect Windows From the Sun
Your windows could be the most energy-efficient on the market, with a high R-value and a low-E coating that helps them shield the sun and protect your home from damage. However, during the hottest, lightest days of summer, they’ll still need a bit of backup. If you don’t want certain rooms in your home overheating, think about installing protective film or investing in window tinting. You’ll be able to get the benefits of long sunlit days without having to worry about UV ray damage or a house that’s constantly running the AC.
Keep It Dark and Cool
One of the most cost-effective ways to keep your home cool during the day is to block off the rooms you’re not using. If you live in a household where everyone is gone during the day, put all the blinds down and keep everything as dark as possible so that you can return home to a cool, breezy house. If there are a few people home during the day, keep a few rooms off limits, like upstairs rooms or bedrooms, so that you can keep everything temperature controlled for when you return home rather than having to crank up the AC at its highest setting just to cool things down a few degrees.