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  • How do window coverings provide energy efficiency?
    About half of the residential energy consumption is lost through the “energy holes” in your home, which are your windows. Because glass is a good conductor of heat, so much more heat flows through the windows than through the walls. This means that without window coverings, half of the energy used to heat up your home in the winter or cool down your home in the summer will be lost. Window coverings present a means of resisting the heat flow between the air inside/outside your home and the window pane. This ensures that the temperature desired inside your home remains uninterrupted by outside weather conditions.
  • Which type of window covering is the most energy efficient?
    Honeycomb shades are designed with two sheets of fabric which are bonded together to form cells (or “pleats”). These cells serve as insulating pockets which trap the air from outside your home and therefore reduce its impact on the temperature inside your home. Several honeycomb constructions are available today to target various degrees of energy efficiency, including single-cell honeycomb, double-cell honeycomb, honeycomb within a honeycomb, and more! Once you cool down or heat up your home to your preferred temperature, honeycomb shades will allow you to maintain that temperature without further energy consumption. Energy-efficient window treatments are a smart investment which will pay for itself as your heating and cooling costs will noticeably decrease.
  • What factors should be considered for maximum privacy?
    The design and material of a window covering are primary drivers of the privacy level that can be achieved. For example, within our collection of screen (or “solar”) shades, every style offers a distinct combination of openness factor and color or pattern. A screen shade with a low openness factor implies more privacy because the space between the fabric weaves is minimal. Moreover, when light hits the weaves of lighter-colored screen shades, it is reflected back toward the eye of the observer. This reflectivity creates a subtle glow-like effect around the weaves that accentuates the color of the fabric and contributes to the relative level of obscurity of the view-through. Darker-colored fabrics, on the other hand, are less reflective, and therefore remain relatively easier to see through.
  • What are the benefits of motorized window coverings?
    The main benefit of motorized window coverings is convenience! Homeowners can effortlessly raise, lower, traverse, or tilt their window coverings all with the push of a button. Additionally, certain motorized products in today’s market are accompanied by sophisticated applications which offer the ability to control your window coverings via a smartphone or a tablet. These applications also allow for the creation of schedules to dictate the automatic operation of your window coverings throughout the day.
  • How can I best control light with window coverings?
    Many aspects contribute to the degree of light control which can be reached with a window covering, including the design, operating system, and mounting technique. A roller shade, for example, is often times combined with a screen shade to create a “dual roller shade.” This introduces the ability to coordinate sheer and opaque fabrics for superior light control. Many operating systems today offer increased versatility by allowing the user to adjust the window covering to optimal positions. A perfect example is the top-down/bottom-up operating system which provides the ability to move the center rail and bottom rail of the shade from either the top-down or the bottom-up. This offers additional privacy and light control options to homeowners. Finally, when certain window coverings are mounted inside the window frame, light gaps may exist as a result. An easy solution for this is by mounting the window covering outside of the window frame, thereby overlapping the window pane entirely and eliminating all light gaps.
  • Can my honeycomb shades be designed to offer both energy efficiency AND light control?
    Absolutely! Honeycomb shades can be constructed with a sophisticated operating system which utilizes two fabric panels (with different opacities) that are attached at the center rail of a single shade. This allows each panel to operate independently and gives users the flexibility to adjust the shade to the position providing the desired levels of privacy and light filtration.
  • How can window coverings protect my interiors?
    Many types of window treatments provide protection against harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays which can damage your floors, furnishings, upholstery, draperies, and artwork over time. In many cases, 99% of UV rays can be blocked when the entire window pane is covered. Some window coverings (such as sheer shades) can still provide excellent UV protection with the vanes open. You can therefore also think of window coverings as an approach to extending the life spans of your valuables!
  • Why do vane, slat, or louver sizes matter?
    First, their sizes will determine the number of vanes, slats, or louvers that are placed along the window covering, which will result in varying aesthetic looks that will each appeal to consumers differently. Second, because the quantity of vanes, slats, or louvers will vary based on their sizes, the degree of potential view-through will differ as well. For example, the larger the louvers of a shutter, the fewer louvers placed along the shutter, and therefore the fewer louvers obscuring one’s view.
  • My window is operated by a window crank. Does this present a problem?
    Not at all! There are several ways to resolve this issue. If the window crank is too large, an outside-mount installation may be employed so that the window covering can operate freely without the disruption of the window crank. Alternatively, a large window crank can be replaced with a “low profile” crank to allow for the mounting of the window covering inside the window frame.
  • Which operating systems are designed for enhanced child and pet safety?
    Child and pet safety has become one of the top priorities in the manufacturing and design of window treatments today. A variety of operating systems have been developed to ensure that young children and pets can safely wonder around the house. These include different forms of cord-free, retractable cord, and custom clutch mechanisms which eliminate the dangling loops that presented a home hazard in the past.
  • What are the optimal window coverings for areas exposed to moisture and humidity?
    The plantation shutter market has evolved tremendously over the years and products have been developed to mimic the look of genuine hardwood while at the same time provide increased durability and ease of maintenance. Shutters made of vinyl have been designed for this purpose. They will stand the toughest conditions and are guaranteed to never warp, crack, fade, chip, peel, or discolor. These special shutters are also 100% waterproof which makes them ideal for extreme conditions, such as exposure to high moisture and humidity which may be present in kitchens and bathrooms. A related window treatment has been designed in the wood blind family. Faux wood is used to manufacture this “alternative wood” product, allowing it to withstand moisture and common household chemicals. Faux wood blinds are well-protected against fading, yellowing, warping, or bowing and are also very easy to clean.
  • Which product will best cover my skylights?
    We recommend our clients to cover their skylights with honeycomb shades which will provide a specific opacity level, energy efficiency, and ease of operation. They can be installed with a manual operating system which offers a hand crank or telescoping pole for hard-to-reach windows. Alternatively, skylight honeycomb shades can be motorized for ultimate convenience. Should you choose to incorporate the Hunter Douglas PowerView application, you would be able to operate your shades from any place at any time, as well as set your shades in motion according to your schedule.
  • What are the different types of plantation shutters available today?
    Plantation shutters are categorized into three distinct groups, including genuine hardwood, composite (or hybrid), and vinyl (or PVC) shutters. Genuine hardwood shutters are crafted from pure, seasoned hardwood. As you probably know, wood is very unique and includes many qualities that you cannot get in a manmade product, such as different grain styles, stains, knots, mineral deposits, etc. which can all look completely different in various lighting conditions. Composite (or hybrid) shutters look like real painted wood, but are offered at a fraction of the cost. They are designed with a grain-like finish that mimics the looks of genuine wood and are combined with advanced man-made elements to result in a quality product with more strength, straightness, and stability. Vinyl (or PVC) shutters provide the look of a finely-painted shutter with the toughness of vinyl for long-lasting beauty and quality. They will stand the toughest conditions and are guaranteed to never warp, crack, fade, chip, peel, or discolor. These special shutters are also 100% waterproof which makes them ideal for extreme conditions, such as exposure to high moisture and humidity which may be present in kitchens and bathrooms.
  • What should I know before committing to plantation shutters?
    Plantation shutters certainly offer an elegant look and charm to a room. They are considered permanent window coverings that add resale value to a home, as they are one of those products that have been around for well over 100 years and really never go out of style. Additionally, they provide “curb appeal” in the sense that they introduce a unique look to the outside of the home. However, it needs to be understood that plantation shutters are not: (1) a blackout product, (2) always uniform in the way the louvers overlap and the amount of light that is let in, and (3) the best option when maximum view-through is essential (there are stiles, rails, louvers, divider rails, etc. that can certainly get in the way of someone’s view).
  • What are the qualities of sheer shades?
    Sheer shades are made up of a series of vanes and sheets of sheer fabric that combine nicely to transform exterior light from harsh to soft and comfortable. Their unique design also enhances natural daylighting by dispersing sunlight deep into the room, which reduces the need for electric lights. The special quality of their construction is that the sheer fabric will still maintain daytime privacy, reduce glare, and provide significant ultraviolet (UV) protection.
  • What are the qualities of roman shades?
    Roman shades are very traditional window coverings that have been around for quite a long time. Traditionally, they are made of fabric which folds as the shade is lifted and are designed with different patterns and styles. Roman shades are also crafted with a liner that can provide varying light-filtering effects. Modern roman shades have become the new standard in the roman shade world. They offer a contemporary interpretation of the classic roman shade look and come in either a rolling style or a stacking style to provide a clean and uncluttered appearance from both inside and outside the home.
  • What are the qualities of roller shades?
    First of all, roller shades feature a variety of looks from simple, to modern, to bold, to earthy, to traditional. There is always going to be a style that will match your preferences! Roller shades also provide an appealing backdrop to any room while providing simple functionality. So the fabrics hold the beauty while the shade itself is very easy to operate. And in the case that it is relevant to you, a roller shade can be combined with a screen shade to create a dual roller shade. This is a way to coordinate sheer and opaque fabrics for optimal light control.
  • What are the qualities of screen (solar) shades?
    Screen shades feature a deep collection of fabrics with different degrees of openness factors that give varied levels of privacy and light-filtering effects. Each fabric is also designed with a specific performance characteristic that can satisfy the unique objectives of all consumers. For example, one fabric can better reflect solar heat and lower the heat gain in the home, while another fabric can introduce increased view-through. Screen shades are also ideal for covered outdoor spaces, including porches, sunrooms, or patios. And in the case that it is relevant to you, a screen shade can be combined with a roller shade to create a dual roller shade. This is a way to coordinate sheer and opaque fabrics for optimal light control.
  • What are the qualities of woven wood shades?
    Woven wood shades introduce an organic element to a room since they are crafted from natural materials such as woods, reeds, bamboo, and grasses. And these natural materials may also contain unique stain variations, grain imperfections, knots, and slight cracks which really complement the natural element of the shade. Durability is a noteworthy characteristic of this window covering as different weaving techniques are employed to produce maximum strength and quality. It is also common for homeowners to incorporate a light-filtering or room-darkening liner to better control their desired lighting and privacy levels.
  • What are alternative wood blinds?
    Alternative wood blinds were designed to mimic the looks of hardwood with the purpose of overcoming some of the limitations inherent in genuine wood blinds. They are manufactured with faux wood which allows them to withstand moisture and common household chemicals. Faux wood blinds are also well-protected against fading, yellowing, warping, or bowing and are very easy to clean.
  • Which types of products will best cover my specialty-shaped windows?
    One of the more popular options for covering specialty-shaped windows is plantation shutters. They can be made into almost any shape (including arches, circles and quarter circles, eyebrows, angles, ovals, hexagons, and more) and can keep the integrity and beauty that specialty shapes add to a room. That being said, specialty-shaped windows can be treated with a wide array of window coverings, such as sheers, roman shades, hardwood and faux wood blinds, and more.
  • Where can I see samples of your window coverings?
    All of our window treatment selections (including designs, fabrics, textures, colors, etc.) are represented in our manufacturers’ sample books. If you would like to review samples of our window treatment offerings, feel free to schedule an in-person consultation with one of our specialists at your convenience. Please visit our Schedule A Consultation page for additional information. We also recommend browsing through our window covering gallery for an overview of some of our popular window covering solutions.
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