Protection From The Sun

From The Sun

Here's 6 Cool Solutions for New and Existing Homes!

While a little ray of sunshine never hurt anyone, we still need protection from the sun. Like human skin which can peel, crack, burn, blister or worse, so too, can your home; especially, if you live in  a hot climate such as Florida, California, Arizona or Texas, just to name a few.  It's not just the sunshine wreaking havoc but the solar heat buildup that delivers a double blow to your artwork, flooring and other valuable belongings.

Harried attempts to shield your home from the damaging sun and excessive heat can create an expensive cave-like living space: With all the windows on lock down--killing any natural light--the lights are turned on in every room so you can see but it's generating even more heat. So, to keep cool the air conditioner blows full speed ahead racking up a hefty electric bill.

But it doesn't have to be that way. While newly built homes do have an advantage of incorporating solutions into their design from the ground up, existing homes can resolve these issues with a little creativity and ingenuity. And, no, that doesn't mean it has to be ugly.

One of the most effective methods to cooling your home is to stop the heat from building up in the first place. The primary source for this build-up is absorbed by your house through the windows, walls and roof. Since a large percentage of unwanted heat in a home comes through the windows, we'll tackle this one first . . .

Window: Cover-ups and Other Shady Stuff

Films Aren't Just for Hollywood

One of the least expensive counter-attacks is the use of reflective solar window films, reducing up to 74% of solar energy. Window films are available for a variety of applications such as heat control, glare control, UV blocking and one-way mirror.

Roll 'Em, Roll 'Em . . .

Rolling shutters is an elegant and sturdy option. They not only provide security, privacy, shade and UV protection but storm protection as well because they are installed on the exterior of the house.

But wait! Isn't that the cave-like dwelling I'm trying to avoid?

Possibly, but not every window has to be fitted with one. Perhaps, just the windows with southern exposure can be equipped with these. Some are even vented so you can see out while others can't see in.

Take Shelter

Another exterior sun protection and shading option: retractable awnings, sunscreens and shelters, providing you with the option of having sun when you want and shade when you need it.

Fully Exposed

However, the ultimate in protection from solar heat and light without compromising decor or view with heavy curtains is the Smart Glass, also known as privacy glass, dynamic glass or switchable glass, shielding up to 99% of harmful UV rays.

Innovative technology that allows you to control the light entering your space. The glass can be changed from clear, tint to private automatically or by the touch of a button or flip of a switch.

Smart Glass can be installed not only for new construction but to existing windows or other light penetrating fixtures such as doors and skylights.

Roofs: A Coat for Hot Days?

About a third of the unwanted heat that builds up in your home comes in through the roof. And is hard to control with traditional roofing materials.

One solution is to apply a reflective, waterproof coating which can be applied to your existing roof. Two types are available at the local hardware store. One is a white latex and the other contains glass fibers and aluminum particles. The latter has a tacky surface and attracts dust which reduces its reflectivity quality.

Or perhaps, a radiant barrier is more to your liking. These barriers are installed on the underside of the roof, reducing heat by approximately 25%. They come in a single layer barrier (aluminum foil with paper backing) or a multi-layer (fiber-reinforced backing).

Walls and Sidings: Paint It Up

And, we get to the last area of the house to ward off the effects of the sun's rays and its heat.

Did you know dark-colored exterior wall paints absorb 70-90% of the sun's ray causing your paint to fade and allowing the heat to enter, creating the effect of "thick" air. That's because it's actually hanging in the interior ceilings and roof.

Consider painting the outside of your home a lighter color to reflect the sun's rays.

Yellow Florida House

Our Specialty

ArcDesign specializes in custom-designed homes and permit drawings. Our team of designers and draftsmen will work with you to create a design based on your needs and wants and will then create a permit drawing set for you, your contractor and building department. So . . .

What are the next steps?

Who do I hire? A contractor? An architect? A building designer or draftsman?

Let us help you begin the process, plus we have great relationships with many licensed contractors in Pinellas and Pasco counties who can give you estimates and bids.