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Window Film

Adhesive plastic sheets known as window films can be easily applied to your windows. These films effectively filter light and heat, replicating the insulation benefits of conventional double-glazed windows but at a significantly lower cost. Window films will reduce how much heat gets in through windows. The film works by providing insulation and UV protection. 

This is a great option for apartments and renters. Films act like double glazing. It is a cheap and quick solution to improve your home's energy efficiency and they can be removed when you're ready to move out.  

Better Renting has installation instructions and a buying guide on their website. Here are the main points: 

  • Low-emissivity (Low-E) films: Low-E films are designed to maintain consistent indoor temperatures by blocking UV rays and heat. These will often need to be installed professionally. 
  • Reflective films: these have a metallic layer that reflects light away from your windows, which makes them very effective at reducing heat and glare. 
  • Ceramic films: are very good at reducing infrared heat while allowing visible light to pass through. 
  • Multi-layered films: some films will incorporate different layers of materials to maximise their insulation and efficiency. 
  • Tint level: window films come in a huge range of aesthetic designs and tints to suit your preferences for appearance and light-blocking.

Window films can be purchased online or at hardware stores (like Bunnings)

Curtains and blinds

Use curtains on windows that are exposed to direct sunlight so that you minimise the amount of sun entering your home. Here are some tips:

  1. Light-colored fabrics: Opt for light-colored curtains to reflect sunlight rather than absorb it, helping to keep the room cooler.

  2. Thermal curtains: Invest in thermal or blackout curtains designed to insulate your windows. These curtains can block out both heat and cold, providing year-round temperature control. Make sure to close these before the sun is able to come in, otherwise you will be trapping the heat inside

  3. Reflective materials: Choose curtains made from reflective materials that bounce sunlight away from the room, preventing it from turning into heat.

  4. Double-layer curtains: Use double-layer curtains with a sheer layer underneath. During the day, you can draw the heavier layer to block out heat while still allowing natural light through the sheer layer.

  5. Close curtains during the hottest hours: Keep curtains closed during the hottest parts of the day to block out direct sunlight and prevent heat buildup in the room.

  6. Ventilation: Ensure proper ventilation by allowing curtains to be partially open, creating a cross breeze. This can help circulate air and cool the room.

  7. Curtain liners: Consider using curtain liners or thermal liners to enhance insulation, preventing outside temperatures from affecting the indoor environment.

  8. Hanging curtains outside the window frame: Extend the curtain rod beyond the window frame to minimize the amount of heat that enters the room from the sides.

  9. Use of natural fabrics: Opt for breathable and natural fabrics like cotton or linen that allow air to circulate, contributing to a cooler atmosphere.

  10. Adjust throughout the day: Be flexible with curtain adjustments based on the time of day and the external temperature. Open curtains during cooler periods and close them during the warmer parts of the day.