Plantation shutters are king in HOMR’s updated rankings of Dallas window treatments.
We spoke to our Dallas area HOMR members about windows and window treatments, and their desire for increased energy efficiency was overwhelming. It became the primary criteria for our evaluation of window treatment performance in DFW homes.
Due to this, HOMR used the latest data from the Department of Energy regarding window treatment energy efficiency as the primary criteria for these rankings. We paired that data with style trends and purchasing information from DFW window contractors.
The result is a 3-step ranking system of the best window covering options for DFW homeowners. Here’s what we’ll cover in this article:
Reduce Energy Bills 15% With Energy Efficient Window Treatments
Top 5 Dallas Window Treatments: Ranked Best to Worst
The 3 Least Energy Efficient Window Treatments
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Why it matters: Reduce Energy Bills 15% With Energy Efficient Window Treatments
We all have that one couch that faded in the sun, and that one spot in our home that’s warmer or colder than everywhere else. These sun-damaged areas of your house could have been protected by energy efficient window treatments.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DEP) states that 76% of sunlight that hits our windows becomes heat in our homes. This makes energy efficient Dallas window treatments crucial — the right blinds or shades can save Dallas homeowners up to 15% on their energy bills.
Not only do energy efficient window treatments keep home cooling costs down in the summer, they also prevent up to 30% of heat loss in the winter. As Dallas winters get more extreme, it’s equally important to retain as much heat in your home as possible to avoid rising heat bills.
Here are 5 key reasons why your Dallas window treatments must be energy efficient:
1. Reduce heat gain in the summer: Dallas residents experienced 55 days of over 100°F weather last year. Energy efficient window treatments block out over ¾ of direct sunlight and prevent that excess heat from entering your home.
2. Reduce heat loss in the winter: Dallas winters are getting colder. The DEP reports that our homes lose 30% of their heat through poorly covered windows. The right treatments can save DFW homeowners up to 10% on their annual home heating bills.
3. Improve indoor comfort: Keeping your home's temperature regulated means you don't have to wear your winter coat in December and your swimsuit in July.
4. Protect furniture and flooring from fading: As your window treatments block out sunlight, they also keep harmful UV rays from reaching your flooring and furniture. Over time, this protection keeps your interior decor from fading.
5. Promote eco-friendly living: The more you save on home cooling and home heating bills, the more you reduce your carbon footprint. You’ll save the environment as you save money — what’s not to love about that?
Worried about your home’s AC system? Read our updated Buying Guide and discover the top 2 Dallas air conditioning companies for quality installation service and repair.
5 Popular Dallas Window Treatments: Energy Efficiency Rankings
HOMR researched the 5 most popular types of Dallas window treatments, and rated them on overall energy efficiency. We ranked these window treatments using 3 criteria:
Style and Design Utility
We used energy efficiency scores to break any ties — the potential savings on home energy bills is too great to ignore.
Here are the results of our DFW window treatment rankings:
#1: Plantation Shutters
#2: Cellular Shades
#3: Roman Shades
#4: Faux Wood Blinds
#5: Roller Shades
Here’s a detailed analysis of our Dallas window treatment rankings:
Top Pick: Plantation Shutters
Plantation shutters are extremely popular in Dallas homes for their aesthetic quality — they look great in ranch and modern farmhouse style homes. Their slanted louver design allows users to adjust them easily to let in more or less sunlight as desired. Plantation shutters are also extremely durable and easy to clean.
Plantation Shutters Overall Energy Efficiency Grade: A-The DEP ranks plantation shutters right behind cellular shades for overall efficiency. They’re particularly good options for Dallas-Fort Worth homes due to their cooling ability, and are part of a solid strategy to keep summer AC costs down.
Plantation Shutters Style Grade: A+ Nothing says “Dallas home design” like plantation shutters. There’s nothing trendy about plantation shutters — they bring timeless charm to kitchens, sitting rooms and porch areas. Transitional designers also like how chic plantation shutters look in modern homes, and so do we.
Overall Grade Plantation Shutters: A
What types of windows look best with plantation shutters in that modern farmhouse kitchen? Read the upcoming HOMR Guide to 22 styles of windows — and which pair best with your house style.
Runner Up: Cellular Shades
Cellular shades (also known as honeycomb shades) are highly regarded for their excellent insulation and ease of use. Dallas homeowners like cellular shades for bedrooms, nurseries and high-traffic living areas.
Cellular Shades Overall Energy Efficiency Grade: A The Department of Energy ranks cellular shades #1 on its list of energy efficient window treatments — and we agree. The air pockets that exist in cellular shades help insulate your home by reducing the conduction of heat through your windows.
Cellular Shades Style Grade: B Plantation shutters beat cellular shades — and most other window treatments — by a mile in terms of style. The honeycomb design of cellular shades works great in modern, transitional and minimalist design schemes. But beyond a wide range of colors, there isn’t a ton of versatility in cellular shade styles.
Overall Grade, Cellular Shades: A
Looking to improve your home's energy efficiency? Read HOMR’s Buying Guide and discover 3 smart thermostat brands we really like.
Roman shades are a popular choice for bay windows and other hard-to-reach window styles. Dallas homeowners love Roman shades for their sophisticated style and sturdy construction. They’re available in a wide variety of fabrics and textures.
Roman Shades Overall Energy Efficiency Grade: B The liner utilized in Roman shade construction helps deliver strong energy efficiency. While they don’t deliver the same insulation quality as cellular shades, Roman shades do a good job of blocking sunlight and keeping rooms cool in the summer.
Roman Shades Style Grade: A- If you want elegance in your home design, Roman shades are the right pick. They work well in stately traditional interiors, and find surprising utility in sleeker modern designs. If your home has a more laid-back vibe, Roman shades likely won’t work for you.
Overall Grade, Roman Shades: B+
Energy efficient window treatments are only as effective as the windows they protect. Check back for our upcoming guide to 5 popular window materials and see their efficiency rankings.
Faux Wood Blinds
Faux wood blinds deliver the classic style of wood blinds without the elevated cost. They’re preferred in busy areas of the home for their durability and ease of cleaning. Faux wood blinds for their ability to keep rooms warm in the winter.
Faux Wood Blinds Overall Energy Efficiency Grade: C+ (B in colder climates) If we weren’t ranking these treatments for Dallas, faux wood blinds would score higher. The primary energy perk of faux wood blinds is keeping heat in your home during winter months, making them inherently more valuable in colder parts of the country.
Faux Wood Blinds Style Grade: C+ Faux wood blinds almost have the visual appeal of authentic wood blinds — almost. While their color is more variable, the PVC and composite products used to make faux wood is a pain to clean and never looks fully natural.
Overall Grade, Faux Wood Blinds: C+
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Roller shades come in a wide variety of fabrics, colors and textures. They’re generally preferred by homeowners who care more about looks than energy efficiency. They’re also very easy to operate, making them a wise choice for busy homeowners or individuals with mobility issues.
Standard Roller Shades Overall Energy Efficiency Grade: C This ranking comes with an asterisk. Roller shades aren’t inherently more energy efficient than other options — standard roller blinds reduce heat loss by less than 15%.
However, homeowners can purchase cellular roller shades or solar shades to increase their efficiency.
Standard Roller Shades Style Grade: C If you’re looking for elegance, charm or statement decor — roller shades don’t fit the bill. But in a design space where furniture and other accents do the talking, understated roller shades blend nicely into the overall design scheme.
Overall Grade, Standard Roller Shades: C
Pick your window treatments already? Great — get a free quote on installation here!
The 3 Least Energy Efficient Window Treatments
Unlike the 5 window treatment options listed above, these 3 aren’t energy efficient choices for Dallas homeowners.
While some — particularly sheer curtains — offer nice aesthetic value, there simply is too much energy loss to consider them quality home options for Dallas residents.
Vertical blinds are made from generously spaced slats. These slats allow heat to escape through the gaps, and also let UV rays in from the strong Dallas summer sun. The amount of energy you’ll conserve by installing vertical blinds in your home is minimal.
Vertical Blinds Overall Energy Efficiency Grade: C-
Sheer Curtains and Blinds
Sheer curtains and blinds are good for aesthetic value only. They’re not good insulators, and they allow an exceptional amount of light into your home. Sheer curtains don’t prevent heat loss in the winter or heat gain in the summer.
Sheer Curtains Overall Energy Efficiency Grade: D
Generic Skylight Shades
Skylights are beautiful and a great source of natural light. But when it comes to energy efficiency — especially heat gain in the summer — they’re a nightmare. Skylights are highly inefficient at keeping heat out of your home, and generic skylight shades don’t help much.
But hey, we love skylights. So rather than pan them with a terrible energy efficiency grade, let’s talk about 1-2 simple steps Dallas homeowners can take to improve skylight efficiency.
How to improve skylight energy efficiency: Cover your skylights with cellular shades or Roman shades to decrease trapped heat issues. Smart homeowners cover skylights with window film to protect against solar glare and UV exposure.
If you’re buying window film, check for an NFRC rating. This label includes energy performance ratings that measure the film’s protection against solar heat gain and light transmittance.
Skylights with no window film Energy Efficiency Grade: D
Skylights with window film Energy Efficiency Grade: C+
Unlike colder parts of the country, the primary function of Dallas window treatments is to keep your home cool in the summer. Energy efficient treatments like cellular shades and plantation shutters do a great job keeping Dallas homes protected from outside heat and UV rays.
And hey, saving 15% on your energy bills every year is a pretty nice bonus!
If you’re ready to upgrade to more energy efficient windows and pair them with high-quality window treatments, HOMR has a free quote from a top Dallas window company waiting for you.
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