Awnings plus shade minus energy costs equals savings!
It’s an equation that can’t be denied. Awnings do more than add value and curb appeal, they help you save money!
Many of you are probably running your air conditioners nonstop right now to keep your home cool from the high temperatures. And that means your energy bills are taking a big hit. Luckily, there’s an attractive solution.
Awnings are an affordable and effective way to decrease energy costs because they reduce solar heat gain by blocking sunlight. When the sun hits the glass windows or doors in your home, it increases the load on your air conditioner by almost 20%. You end up using more energy and spending more money to keep your house cool.
By adding awnings that limit the amount of sunlight entering your home, you can see a significant decrease in cooling costs.
Retractable awnings, specifically, are perfect for decreasing energy costs in both summer and winter. Why, do you ask? Because they’re versatile. You can manually control how much shade you want. You can extend them in the warmer months and make your deck or patio instantly feel 15 degrees cooler. In the colder months, you can retract them to allow the sun to warm your home.
In 2012, the Professional Awning Manufacturers Association (PAMA) did a vast Energy Savings study that included 50 cities stretching across all 50 states. The data showed that in a hot year, awnings could reduce annual cooling energy expenditures by more than 25% compared to homes with unshaded windows. This number can amount to $200 or more in energy savings every year.
“People don’t realize that there are more eco-friendly ways to stay cool,” says Byron Yonce, MFC chairman of PAMA. “While turning up the air conditioner results in higher energy bills, awnings and shades work with the air conditioner to keep your home cooler and reduce the need for additional energy.”
It really is all about shade. About 76% of the sunlight that falls on standard double-pane windows enters a home to become heat during the warmer months. This is called solar heat gain. Solar heat gain is responsible for almost 20% of the load on your air conditioner. Window awnings can reduce heat gain in the summer by up to 65% on south-facing windows and 77% on west-facing windows.
Another, often overlooked, way that awnings can help you save money is by keeping water away from doors and windows. When your windows or doors are not adequately protected, constant exposure can cause damage and leaks. If water gets into your house, it can cause mold, mildew, and warping. Installing awnings over your doors and windows can protect them and save you from expensive water repair costs.