People living in southern climes often want room darkening shades. In the summer months, particularly in these days of (seemingly) continuously rising temperatures, many homeowners look for ways to keep their houses cool. Of course, there is the old standard: air conditioning. But, it has the drawback of costing money. In general, people try to minimize the amounts of those “dead presidents” that they have to part with on a regular basis.
Cellular shades, also known as the room darkening type, are an excellent alternative method to helping a house stay cool. These days, they have become quite popular because of their crisp, clean style, their versatility and their energy efficiency. The soft shades come in single, double and triple honeycomb patterns come in sheer, light-filtering, and room darkening styles. While soft, the material they are made out of is quite tough and durable.
The secret to the shades is their honeycomb shape. As the blinds are lowered, the cells expand. These voids fill with air and form a barrier to the sun’s rays. The result is that the run must first heat the air in those voids before it can heat the air in the room. It is not a perfect system; after all, the sun is quite powerful. Still, even a modicum of relief is sometimes all it takes to save a significant amount of money. Furthermore, if the homeowner opts for shades that are also a dark color, that contributes to the cooling of the room, and provides privacy. As an added option, these room darkening shades can be made cordless. A simple motor allows them to be operated by a remote control or wall switch. Some models also come with what is called a continuous cord loop. This is a special feature that allows heavy shades to be operated with much less effort. As for vendors, there are Blinds.com, Hunter Douglas, Graber, Levolor, and Bali to name only a few. All can be purchased at a variety of local stores: Wal-Mart, Sears, K-Mart, or online from their own websites. Also, as with most things these days, discount stores like Costco and Sam’s Club carry them.