Plantation shutters in a traditional living room

R-Values of Shutters: Comparing Energy Efficiency of Window Coverings

June 13, 2017

We’re big talkers when it comes to energy efficiency in window treatments. That’s because we’ve got proof for our claims. With the help of some independent research, we can directly compare the energy efficiency of the most often-chosen window coverings in New York City, from blinds to shades to shutters.

What’s An R-Value And Why Does It Matter For Window Coverings?

Everything in your home that separates indoors from outdoors, from the walls to your window treatments, has an R-value. That value lets you know how good it is at blocking thermal energy from moving through it. A larger r-value corresponds to a better insulator.

honeycomb shades in New York City house 

Why does the R-value of a window covering matter? Well, a better insulator makes it easier to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. No matter if you want to keep in the heat during the winter or keep your home cool in summer, great insulation is a requirement. That’s even more necessary for your windows, because they’re a big culprit for energy loss in your home.

Comparing R-values & Energy Efficiency Of Window Treatments

Every window treatment is not made equal, at least not when it comes to energy efficiency. Though there can be some variation based on the material and construction between different companies and makes, here’s what you’re likely to find when comparing window treatments.

Window Covering

Typical R-Value

Window alone

0.75-1

Blinds

1.5-2

Pleated shades

2.5

Drapes

2-3

Wood Shutters

3-4

Honeycomb shades

4.5

Polywood plantation shutters

>6

R-values from HouseLogic & Energy.gov.

A quick study of the chart tells you a few things. Perhaps the first thing you notice is the fact that a few certain window treatments offer almost no benefit at all (we’re talking about you, blinds), while others are energy-efficient beasts. That difference in R-value could make for a difference of several degrees – that’s the difference in whether or not you crank up your air conditioning.

Something else you might notice is that what the window treatment is made out of makes a big difference. Honeycomb shades, designed with multiple engineered layers designed to trap heat, can stop heat flow much more effectively than pleated shades.

plantation shutters in New York City sunroom 

Likewise, Polywood® plantation shutters, built from a solid-body faux wood polymer, can keep out heat a lot more effectively than wood shutters. Natural wood can be cavernous, with natural gaps and knots that let heat move easily. Polywood shutters, fit with custom weatherstripping, build a solid seal on your window when shut, giving them that best in class r-value of 6 and up.

Up Your Home’s R-value

The science doesn’t lie. Your window coverings play a big role in how comfortable your home can be. Think your home could be a little more comfortable? We can help. Get in touch with the team at Sunburst Shutters New York by calling 631-246-3930, or use our free consultation request form below.

Get a Free Quote Today
Contact us at 631-246-3930 or complete this form to schedule a free in-home or virtual design consultation!