10 Ways to Block Sunlight Heat from Windows

The heat energy of the sun can warm your house to uncomfortable levels, particularly in the summertime. Rather than having to use your air conditioner to try and tackle the unpleasant indoor temperatures, learn ways of blocking the sunlight heat from your windows. This will help you save on your energy bill each month, decrease the carbon footprint of your household significantly and provide you with all-year-round comfort. Here are 10 ways.

  1. Heat Blocking Window Shades
    One fast fix for solar overheating is putting window shades up. While it doesn't actually solve the issue, it can help reduce the heat gain. You can put them up yourself which makes it a simple DIY fix. You'll want to use the proper window shades for blocking out the heat. You'll want to also be sure you're installing them close to the glass for maximum benefit.
  1. Apply Bubble Wrap Installation
    One particular low-cost fix, if you're not worried about the appearance of your windows, is bubble wrap window insulation. It's ideal for temporarily blocking the sunlight out. It increases the insulating properties of your window by creating a still, trapped air layer.
  1. Plant Shrubs or Trees Outside Your Windows
    Trees and plants around your window can help shade some of the sunlight and keep the area right outside your house cooler. As plants start losing their water vapor, they cool the air surrounding them.
  1. Add Wall Insulation
    You'll spend a lot more money trying to air condition sunny areas lacking proper insulation. You could decrease its cooling requirements by thoroughly insulating the walls. Some doors and siding panels come with built-in insulation.
  1. Upgrade Your Windows
    Most of the heat from the sun enters your house through glass, therefore it's a good idea to focus on the windows. Well-sealed, multiple pane units with low-emissivity glass will enable much less heat to get into your living spaces. They could also keep warmth from escaping your home in cold weather.
  1. Hang Shutters
    Another good way of blocking out the sun's rays is installing swinging shutters. You can install them both inside and out and they can be opened and closed as needed. You might want to opt for full-size exterior shutters made of fiberglass or wood which do a great job of blocking out the light and heat.
  1. Install Solar Shades
    You can install these polyester-coated, light blocking mesh screens inside or out either as retractable roll-up mechanisms or fixed panels. They come with various mesh counts. You'll keep out more heat the higher the count. However, this will also mean your living area will be darker and you'll have a more obscured view.
  1. Apply Window Film
    Window films are unobtrusive plastic films with low-emissivity, metallic coating which reflects heat. You apply them directly to the glass on the window.
  1. Use External Window Shading
    Use eaves or awnings that you install over the outside of the window. This decreases how much sun that hits the window. It might help to talk with a professional to ensure you're angling the shading properly for the best results.
  1. Combine Multiple Methods
    Each of these methods to block the sunlight's heat from your windows helps in their own way. But, none can do the job completely by themselves. For instance, blockout shades and blinds won't stop the sun's light from hitting the outside glass. And, the heat energy from the outside glass heating up could seep into your home.

You'd want to combine this with an outdoor shade solution like adding some greenery, which will also enhance your home's aesthetics.

Another great way of cooling your home and reducing your air conditioning costs is installing a whole house fan. You can consult with a professional HVAC technician on how to do this.