Don't Get Burned By the Sun: Try Low-E Window Coatings

Brett Freeman

As bright as the sun is, much of the light it emits is outside of the visible spectrum. Nearly two-thirds of the sun's energy is in the infrared or ultraviolet part of the light spectrum, and is invisible to the naked eye. But even though it can't be seen, this light can be felt. It is the ultraviolet rays that cause sunburn, for example, and the infrared and ultraviolet light that enters your home through the windows can really drive indoor temperatures up during the summer. If you find yourself choosing between a life behind drawn window shades or paying astronomical air conditioning bills during the summer months, consider a third alternative--installing Low-e window coatings.

Results That Are Felt, Not Seen
Low-e window coatings work by blocking much of the sun's ultraviolet and infrared light, while allowing most of the visible light spectrum to shine through. You can then stand in front of your windows on a hot summer day and not feel heat radiating into your home. According to manufacturers, Low-e windows block virtually all of the sun's ultraviolet light, and a significant portion of the infrared light, reducing the amount of heat coming in through your windows by up to 80 percent. The amount of visible light blocked is variable; you can choose to let nearly all visible light in, or have your window coatings tinted to block up to 60 percent of visible light.

Year-Round Benefits
Low-e window coatings not only lower your utility bills during the summer by preventing heat from entering your home, they also prevent heat from leaving your home through the windows during the colder months. Warming infrared light is reflected back into the house. And the window coatings can also protect your furniture, curtains, floors, and carpets. The same ultraviolet rays that cause sunburn also fade fabrics and wood finishes through protracted exposure to sunlight. More than 99 percent of this harmful light is blocked by Low-e window coatings.

You want to live in a green house, not a greenhouse. If your windows are letting in too much heat, take control with Low-e window coatings.

About the Author
Brett Freeman is a freelance journalist. He also owns a landscaping and irrigation company in North Carolina. Previously he has worked as a beat reporter, a teacher, and for a home improvement company, and he used to own a bar/live music venue.

About the Author
Brett Freeman is a freelance journalist. He also owns a landscaping and irrigation company in North Carolina. Previously he has worked as a beat reporter, a teacher, and for a home improvement company, and he used to own a bar/live music venue.


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