“Hot enough for you?” Most people are enjoying the warm and sunny weather we are experiencing in Worcester and across Massachusetts. But there are times when the temperature and humidity combine to make it very uncomfortable, especially indoors.
Those soaring temperatures can be magnified – literally – inside your home by the sun’s radiation passing through your windows. It’s a phenomenon known as “solar heat gain,” and it can quickly cause the temperature inside your home to spike. That can force your air conditioning to work overtime to cool things down, leading to a jump in your electric bill. And if you don’t have air conditioning, solar heat gain can cause your home to quickly become stiflingly hot.
There are steps you can take to help keep your home’s interior cooler and more comfortable. The simplest step is to close the curtains or blinds, especially on the sunny side of the house. While darker curtains do a better job of reducing solar heat gain, they can also make things dark and gloomy.
Installing awnings over your windows to provide shade can help. Consider getting retractable awnings so that you allow sunlight in when temperatures cool off. Planting shade trees is another way to cool things off, although you may have to wait several years while the saplings mature.
The most effective way to reduce solar heat gain is by installing energy efficient replacement windows. Many new windows feature advanced glass packages that include a microscopic coating that significantly reduces the “solar heat gain coefficient,” which is a measure of how much radiation the window allows to pass through from the outside.
According to the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors, solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) is a ratio where 1 equals the maximum amount of solar heat allowed through a window, and 0 equals the least amount possible allowed through. So an SHGC rating of 0.30 means that 30% of the available solar heat can pass through the window.
Every window we install here at Rescom includes a solar heat gain coefficient that is measured by an independent laboratory and is displayed prominently on a label affixed to the window before installation. Our windows achieve very low SHGC ratings, making them super-efficient at blocking unwanted solar radiation.
As an added bonus, windows with a low SGHC number also do a better job in keeping sunlight from fading drapes, rugs and upholstered furniture.
Interested in learning more about staying more comfortable by minimizing solar heat gain? Call Rescom at (866) 410-5884 to schedule a free, in-home demonstration of our high quality, award-winning replacement windows.