Florida is called the Sunshine State for a reason. You couldn’t imagine living anywhere else, but the afternoon sunlight can be so blinding at times that you have to leave the room until the sun begins setting. You want to be able to enjoy all rooms in your home no matter the time of day, which means you could use some new window shades.
Here are the best types of window shades for Florida homes:
- Honeycomb Shades
- Motorized Shades
- Solar Shades
If you’re not quite sure what the difference is between solar shades and honeycomb shades, make sure you keep reading. Ahead, you’ll learn more about the above three types of shades for combating the glow of the strong Florida sun!
The first shade style you might consider for your Florida home is Honeycomb, also known as cellular shades. The design of these shades is such that, from top to bottom, each window shade is one long strip of fabric. Pleats throughout allow the shade to fold up on itself so it’s not too heavy. Along those pleats, the fabric undergoes a bonding treatment to form the cells. Each cell looks like a honeycomb, hence the name.
Depending on your preferences, you can order honeycomb shades with a single layer, a dual layer, or even a triple layer for the ultimate durability. If you want translucent honeycomb shades for minimizing only some sunlight, that’s one option. You can also go full blackout or get an in-between style for muting some of the sun but not all.
If your window isn’t a traditional rectangle or square, you might especially consider honeycomb shades. The flexibility of these shades allows them to fit windows of all shapes and sizes, including horizontal or vertical. Each honeycomb, when open, can hold air within the cell so that besides blocking out light, honeycomb shades provide some degree of insulation as well.
One downside of honeycomb shades to be aware of is that it’s not exactly easy to get within each cell and clean when the time comes. They’re also among the more expensive shade styles you can select.
Imagine being able to raise or lower your shades without having to do so manually. With motorized shades, it’s possible. They include an internal motorized mechanism that responds to commands that you input on a remote control. The shades can raise all the way, go completely down, or remain halfway or even a quarter of the way open. It’s your choice, as the power is literally in your hands!
You can lift your shades row by row or in several rows. Some motorized shades are completely automated, which makes setting the comfort and ambiance in your living room easier and more hands-off than ever before. You program when your automated shades raise and lower and then let the motor within the shades take care of the rest.
With motorized shades, you could enter your sitting room at sunset or be in your bedroom at sunrise and not have to miss a moment of Florida’s natural beauty because your shades are already adjusted just the way you like them. This kind of convenience is unparalleled.
If you have young children in the house, you’ll quite appreciate the absence of pull sticks and cords, the latter especially of which can be a choking hazard. The security of motorized blinds is not to be overlooked either. If you’re not going to be in the house, you can ensure the blinds are closed so nefarious characters can’t see inside.
Of course, for the less tech-savvy, motorized shades might not be appealing.
If you’re still not sure which shades are best for beating the Florida heat, consider solar shades. Think of these shades like solar panels for your windows. Referred to also as sunshades, the roller shade style of solar shades makes them an appealing choice for many. Unlike standard roller shades, solar shades feature woven, UV-resistant fabric that blocks out more than just the feel of the sun, but its damaging rays as well.
Solar shades come in varying degrees of openness. With a looser weave, you get more natural light but less UV protection. A tighter weave will prevent UV rays from coming into your living room but may make it harder to see through the shades.
How much UV light can solar shades block out? Hunter Douglas notes that screen shades, a type of solar shade, blocks UV light at a rate of over 90%! Phifer solar sunshades are also exceptional at keeping UV light out of a home. These light-blocking properties are among the biggest advantages of solar shades. Not only are you saving your skin, but your carpets, furniture, and walls can all maintain their color richness without the risk of sun fading.
Like honeycomb shades, solar shades are versatile in that you can get them installed in your home’s corner windows and even in a sizable bay window. If you opt for a lighter-hued set, you’ll have illumination without the direct rays of the sun and less heat. Darker colors are harder to see through but won’t let sunlight and heat through one iota.
That said, compared to the other shades on this list, solar shades may offer the least amount of privacy, especially if yours are a lighter color or a looser weave. In your living room or entertainment room, solar shades are a viable option, but you might want to rethink them for a bathroom or bedroom.
The protection and beauty offered by a good set of shades make them a must for Florida homeowners. Whether you prefer the appeal of honeycomb shades, the convenience of motorized shades, or the UV-blocking capabilities of solar shades, you can’t go wrong with any of the above choices!