Windows allow sunlight to be converted to heat as it enters the home. A window awning stops the sunlight on the outside, before it can be converted to heat. Awning fabric does not trap heat or moisture, so the heat is repelled. This lowers the load on the air conditioner, which can help to extend the life of the air conditioner while reducing energy costs. In homes without air conditioning, window awnings can decrease the indoor temperature by about eight to fifteen degrees. This can significantly reduce the need for home cooling, as outdoor temperatures of 85 degrees will result in indoor temperatures of only 70 degrees.
Porch and Patio Awnings
Porch and patio awnings often block sunlight from entering the home through large French or sliding glass doors, further reducing the need for home cooling. In addition, the porch area is cooler, which can reduce the amount of warm air flowing through the door while entering or exiting the home. The porch area also becomes a comfortable space when an awning is installed, so homeowners can enjoy spending time outdoors as opposed to continually cooling the house for comfort.
A Green Alternative
In recent years, society has shifted towards greener options that will help to reduce energy needs. Awnings have been commended for the ability to assist with cooling homes without increasing energy needs. Awnings have also been praised for the low up-front cost and the long-term savings and benefits. In neighborhoods in which awnings are a regular part of home décor, energy needs have shown to be much lower than in comparable neighborhoods in which awnings are not common.
Additional Awning Benefits
In addition to increasing a home’s efficiency and reducing cooling costs, awnings also benefit homeowners by:
- Adding an attractive and distinctive feature to the home
- Increasing home values, in some cases
- Blocking the sun while still allowing the view (unlike heavy drapes)
- Expanding home space by adding an outdoor “room”
- Protecting furniture from the damaging effects of the sun
- Shielding children and other family members from UV rays
- Controlling the brightness of the home