Solar shades are also known as window solar sunscreens, but they differ from the regular, window shades in the sense that they are made of a special fabric and purposely designed and manufactured for the following reasons, as well as benefits – lessen the glare at the window and infrared heat coming from the sun, provide privacy during daytime from bystanders, and allow people in the room to see the view outside.
Special fabric categories of solar shades are – dark fabrics, light fabrics, and high performance reflective fabrics and all afford the advantage of providing control of sun’s glare and heat, of protection from ultraviolet rays, and of getting a view from the outside. Choosing the solar shade dark fabric will offer these advantages: about 94% to 96% of sunlight is blocked by the fabric, thereby, absorbing more of the light and heat, and there is low visible light transmission, indicating less light passing through the fabric and, therefore, there is greater glare control. Light fabric solar shades are perfect for small windows and in areas in the home where a brighter ambience is desired and this is because the fabric is just able to block about 80-90% of sunlight, which means that the fabric structure is designed with a screen mesh which has a greater percentage of mesh holes or has a high openness factor or density such that a small amount of light can pass through the solar shade. Due to its high reflective exterior design, the high performance reflective fabric is an excellent choice for optimum heat and glare control and UV protection.
Solar shades are also helpful in the blocking of three kinds of radiation, which are harmful to our health, and they are: infrared rays, of which by blocking these rays result into reducing the heat transfer through the window, reducing cooling costs, and solar shades can be raised to any level to allow solar heat to penetrate during winter; visible spectrum rays, such that in blocking these rays allow for these advantages – decrease glare, increase the visual comfort where one can view the outside without getting the glare from the sun; ultraviolet rays, which result into a 99% blocking of sunlight carrying harmful UV rays, lowering the risk of skin cancer and eye damage, protects the skin from UV penetration, and reduces the chances of having the home materials and finishes fade and crack.
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Depending on which are your priorities, you can easily decide which solar shade would you prefer if you weigh down on these concerns: reducing energy costs by maintaining a more constant room temperature, combination of light control and privacy, or combination of glare reduction and preserving the view outside.Short Course on Shades – What You Need To Know