Motorized Shades, Smart-tech to Reduce Energy Consumption

Motorized Shades, Smart-tech to Reduce Energy Consumption

On average in the city of Keller, Texas there are 235 sunny days per year with July being the warmest month. That being said, what can homeowners do to protect their interior finishes and keep HVAC units from working overtime? The best ideas are those that keep the heat from entering a home, think motorized shades that block solar heat gain or taking your cooking outdoors. Read on to learn more about how you can combine the latest smart home technology with common practices employed by homeowners before central AC was en vogue.

SEE ALSO: Which Type of Motorized Shades is Right for Your Home?

Cool Down, Block Out Sunlight

During the sunniest parts of the day, you may find that sunlight streams into your home, and while the natural light is welcoming, it can also have an adverse outcome, quickly heating up your indoor spaces. The result: your AC unit is forced to work harder to keep these rooms cool and comfortable. Improve the cooling performance of your HVAC system by adding motorized shades made of UV-resistant material. Each solar shade type has a UV rating, which measures the shade’s ability to restrict harmful rays from passing through it.

Automate Operation, Restrict Harmful Rays

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How Smart Window Shades Work

How Smart Window Shades Work

It’s common to talk about all the ways that smart window shades can benefit you and your Fort Worth, Texas home—energy efficiency, beauty, convenience, and so on. But what’s less common is information on the ways that motorized shades bring about those benefits. If you’re interested in learning about the technology that makes regular window treatments smarter, then read on. 

SEE ALSO: 3 Reasons to Invest in Motorized Shades for Your Home

The “Motorized” Part of Motorized Shades

Instead of the standard curtain rod you’d typically find in a home, smart window shades have rods with tiny motors in them. These motors either run on a track (for drapery) or cause a circular motion for roller shades. These motors are connected to a central technology system so that you can easily control if the shades are open or closed. One of the key features of quality shading brands like Lutron and QMotion is that their motors are practically silent, so you don’t have to listen to an annoying buzz anytime you want to raise or lower the shades.

The Control Methods

Obviously, one of the biggest advantages of smart window shades is that you never have to manually draw the shades open or closed. Instead, you use one of the many smart control methods available. Choose just one or all of them to add to your smart home automation system:

  • Remotes: A simple, elegant remote can be used to adjust the window treatments. Just add it to your coffee table or nightstand and then push the up or down button whenever you’d like the shades adjusted.
  • Phone or Tablet: You can also get the same effect as a remote straight from your smartphone or tablet. Just open up the app and select whether you want the shades open or closed in one room, a few rooms, or the entire home.
  • Wall Switch: We can easily swap out the standard light switches in each room with a version that includes options to control both the lights and the window shades. The control options are personalized, and the switches come in a variety of styles to match the room’s décor.
  • Wall Console: For a more sophisticated control approach, we can replace the standard wall switch with an in-wall touchscreen console. From this touchscreen, you can easily set the right shading, lighting, temperature, etc.
  • Voice: Nothing beats the effortlessness of controlling a room with just your voice. By adding in a voice control device like Amazon Echo, you can simply say “Alexa, close the window shades,” and it will happen.

The Automation Possibilities

As nice as it is to be able to open and close the shades at the push of the button, the real magic happens when you integrate other systems in your home, such as the lighting or HVAC systems. With smart home automation, you don’t have to worry about controlling the window treatments—they open and close automatically depending on factors like the lighting and temperature levels in the room.

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How to Insulate Your Home with Motorized Shades

How to Insulate Your Home with Motorized Shades

Let’s face it: Texas homeowners are not well equipped to deal with cold weather. Anything below 70 degrees is practically foreign territory, and your home’s heating system (if you even have one) is likely rusty from lack of use. That said, the Southlake area has already seen some chilly days, and the fickle Texas weather could turn even colder at a moment’s notice. Is your home prepared? In this blog, we discuss how motorized shades can help keep your home cozy warm without blasting the heater 24x7.

The Need for Insulation

The big trend with home architecture these days is large windows in every room. While these windows promote an open, airy feel to the house, that ambiance comes at a price, a very tangible cost seen each month on your energy bill. That’s because glass is not a very good insulator. During the summer, those glass windows focus the sun’s heat, essentially baking each room and causing your HVAC unit to work overtime to keep things cool.

In the winter, the problem is on the opposite end of the spectrum. Your home’s heat seeps out of the glass, so even though your heater might be running, the odds are likely that you’ll still feel a chill in the air whenever you go into rooms with large windows.

The Solution: Motorized Shades

Obviously, you don’t want to cover up your beautiful windows for the entire winter season, so the trick is to find a solution that balances your view of the outdoors with smart energy management. Motorized shades are a perfect fit.

Window treatments form a barrier between your well-heated room and the glass that enables the heat to pass outside, essentially trapping the warm air in the room. You can achieve this effect through multiple shading styles, such as traditional drapery, but one of the best types of window treatment for heat harnessing is the honeycomb style. The design has pleats that open up to create and trap warm air pockets.

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