Energy costs have been rising steadily in the last year or so, and it’s a trend that shows no signs of slowing. The cost-of-living crisis coupled with the ongoing war in Ukraine has created the perfect storm for homeowners and renters alike. Unfortunately, one can’t simply wave a magic wand to bring down energy costs, but there are some things you can do to cut down on usage.
With that in mind, you might be looking for a few easy ways to save on your heating. One practical option is to insulate your windows. That’s because windows are a major source of heat loss in homes – responsible for up to 25 – 30% of lost heat, according to the US Department of Energy.
If you want to achieve greater energy efficiency, it’s vital to ensure your windows keep in the warmth. As luck would have it, window shutters are a fantastic option for doing just that.
Do Shutters Keep Heat In?
Traditional window coverings such as shutters, curtains and blinds have always been used as a form of temperature control. In the summer they can keep a house cool, and in the winter they can keep a house warm. In particular, thermal window shutters provide a much thicker and more solid material barrier than a curtain or blind fabrics, preventing warm air from escaping and cold draughts from entering.
This might be common wisdom, but it’s also important to look at the research if we want to see just how effective shutters can be when it comes to keeping the heat in.
How Effective Are Shutters At Keeping Heat In?
Historic England did some research into the thermal performance of windows. Within the study, they looked at how much heat was lost through the glass and the frame of a window, and tested some simple insulation methods to see how effective they were at preventing heat loss.
The test results showed that well-fitting shutters can reduce heat loss through windows by 58%.
Note: the shutters must be well-fitted! If the thermal window shutters aren’t installed to fit properly, then that can leave room for warm air to escape or for draughts to sweep in. Thankfully, our Shutterly Fabulous staff are here to measure, advise and install your custom shutters for that perfect fit.
How about shutters in combination with other insulation methods, such as secondary glazing? A study by Historic Environment Scotland into the energy efficiency of traditional buildings tested different combinations of window insulations.
They found that a combination of secondary glazing and shutters reduced heat loss through windows by 75%.
So whether it’s on their own or in combination with other insulation methods, we can safely say that well-fitted shutters can prevent over half of all heat lost through windows.
Which Shutters Are The Most Effective At Keeping Heat In?
Well-fitted thermal window shutters of any style or material are able to prevent heat loss. But if you’re really looking to keep out the cold, you’ll probably want to go for solid shutters. Why? Because solid panel wood shutters are good at trapping in the heat.
As the name suggests, these shutters have solid panels that are not louvered or slatted. They’re constructed from hardwood – specifically, Paulownia wood – a strong yet lightweight material which adds a thick layer of insulation to any window. This solidity also comes in handy for noise reduction and room darkening.
For insulative purposes, you’ll also want to get complete window coverage with Full Height Shutters.
Can Shutters Save On Energy Costs?
If you’ve insulated your windows with well-fitted shutters, you’ll be retaining more heat. If you’re retaining more heat, you’ll be using less gas or electricity to heat your home, which means that you’re going to save on heating bills. Simple!
Your next question might be: how much can shutters save on energy costs? This will depend on a number of factors, but let’s look at an example. Please note that because energy prices are ever-changing in 2022, we have used an example from a couple of years ago.
The standard UK household uses gas for heating, which according to government statistics costs around £557 annually in 2020. Over half of that figure goes towards keeping the room temperature up – about 60% of it, according to data supported by the National Energy Foundation – which in our case would come out to around £334.
Remember that uninsulated windows can be responsible for 30% of your home’s lost heat. That means that our windows could be costing us 100s of pounds in lost heat every year!
Of course, the exact amount you save will vary depending on your personal circumstances. Still, the bottom line is the same – you’ll be cutting down the cost of your heating bill if you install well-fitted window shutters. When you take into account ever-rising energy costs, you can think of shutters as a practical investment in addition to a stylistic one!
If you’d like to talk with our team about how shutters can help to insulate your home, feel free call us on 0800 970 0800 or send an email over to email@example.com.