Thursday, November 15, 2012

Pros and Cons of Window Coverings

What exactly is a window covering? It seems rather broad, but basically it’s anything that covers a window. Pretty self-explanatory, right?  The more difficult part is identifying the different types of coverings. It comes down to three types; blinds and shutters, drapes and shrink film. For those who don’t know, shrink film is a plastic covering that is taped along the border of the window. Once in place, a blow dryer goes across the plastic covering and tightens it up, allowing it to be more energy efficient.
Although people typically only have positive things to say about window coverings, believe it or not, negative consequences do exist.
Less Energy Consumption
One of the great things about window coverings, no matter what kind, is the ability to cut back on a household’s energy consumption.  Shrink film is your best option here, since it completely blocks air from coming in and going out. All sorts of blinds, shutters and draperies exist that work differently when it comes to energy efficiency.
Money Savers
The savings from less energy consumption gives people a chance to save money, too, sometimes a lot of money. Over time these savings can add up.
Affordable Investments
Another great benefit to window coverings is their affordability. You can buy a pack of shrink film for around $15. Shutters, blinds and draperies will be more expensive, but it also depends on the quality, the appeal and the size. Shrink film is cheaper and more efficient. If you don’t want shrink film to be seen on your windows, then hang some blinds or drapes over the window, covering the film. Not only will this make the aesthetics of the household look better, but it’ll add more insulation to your windows.
It may seem like the pros of window coverings are vast compared to the cons, but the cons can still have a huge impact on someone’s life, especially in an emergency.
Fire Hazards
Draperies are easy targets for fires. If a drapery gets caught in the flames of a fire, this could spread the fire quickly, resulting in a significant amount fire damage. In order to avoid fire damage altogether, it’s important to know how to decorate your home safely. Find out more on how to decorate your home safely with these decoration safety tips.
No Smoke Ventilation
Shrink film is a wonderful resource for cutting back on energy and money. However, it does come with a side effect. Since this plastic covering blocks air ventilation and circulation from windows, this can be very detrimental when it comes to a loose house fire, which can cause more smoke damage due to the poor ventilation. Some of the smoke will not be able to ventilate with the shrink film covering the windows. So, if you’re trapped in a room and can’t open a window in time, then the smoke can cause suffocation or lung damage. This shouldn’t prevent you from using shrink film, but help you be more prepared in dealing with a fire. On the bright side, if you escape a house fire fast enough, then the shrink film will trap all the smoke in the house, suffocating the fire and reducing the overall fire damage done to the house.
Lastly, this is by no means a life threatening problem, but nonetheless it is still a hassle. Shutters and blinds require quite a bit of upkeep. They collect dust and dirt and, if not cleaned on a regular basis, will ruin the overall aesthetics of your household.
Overall, the pros certainly outweigh the cons of window coverings. Saving energy is great! Saving money is also great! Fir damage is not. However, smoke and fire damage shouldn’t be a probably as long as YOU fireproof your house and live safely. Other than the upkeep, window coverings are nothing, but positive.

About the author
Sammy Jo writes for Paul Davis Restoration of Kansas City, fire damage restoration experts for more than 45 years and responsible for restoring over 2 million homes.