Enviro Screens and Shutters - Solar Screens Google+
THE SCIENTIFIC FACTS ABOUT THE SUN'S MOVEMENTS

Sorry for the Science Class ... Many of us
hated sitting in class, however, the science
behind Solar Screens/Shades is VERY
important!

As you can see by the graphic, the Sun
changes it's angle between Summer and
Winter.

Solar Screens/Shades are designed based on
the positions of the Sun.  As the Sun increases
it's path during the warmer months, the
Screens/Shades are designed to shade the
window and deflect the Sun's energy.  While
the Sun begins to wane into Winter, the
position of the Sun allows for greater
transmittance through the Screens/Shades, thus
allowing heat through to keep your windows warmer.


Q:   IS THERE A RIGHT AND WRONG WAY TO INSTALL SOLAR SCREENS?
A:   Recently we have viewed several homes on which a certain company in Colorado has been installing solar screens.  There is a right and wrong way
       to install solar screens.  This certain company is installing solar screens by replacing the bug screen on the window with solar screen and making
       another screen for the non-opening side of the window where they attach this screen by placing screws into the actual window frame.  An application,
       while it looks fine, that has many issues: (1) the screen they use (New York Wire) is a terrible screen and will fail within a few years, (2) making
       a hole into the actual window frame not only cancels any warranty that window might have, but also creates a path for temperature to pass into
       the home, (3) the screens are made with plastic corners which will crack, (4) there is no insulating factor placed between the screen and window
       thereby allowing temperatures to pass from the screen to the window and into the home, (5) placing a screw into the window frame has the
       possibility of cracking the window, and (6) installing solar screens this way are not in accordance with U.S. Dept. of Energy's recommendations.



        This same company also attempts to make arched
      window frames, that are completely incorrect (see
      the bottom picture to the right)!
















Q:   HOW DO SOLAR SCREENS KEEP THE HEAT OUT?
A:   Unlike fiberglass screens, Phifer Suntex solar screens are made of a polyester vinyl coated screen material designed to absorb and deflect the heat
       before entering your home. 


Q:   WHAT CAN I EXPECT IN ENERGY SAVINGS? 

A:    Previous customers have reported a 25-45 percent savings on their energy bill. 


Q:  HOW DO SOLAR SCREENS EFFECT THE NATURAL LIGHTING AND TEMPERATURE OF MY HOME?
A:  There are two variations of the Solar Screens. 
      1.  80% grade - Darkens up to 25% and cools up to 34 degrees. 
      2.  90% grade - Darkens up to 40% and cools up to 38 degrees. 


Q:   WHAT IS THE INSTALLATION TIME TO GET SOLAR SCREENS ON MY HOME/BUSINESS? 
A:   From the date of purchase, solar screens can usually be installed within 2-5 weeks (depending on the season and the amount of jobs in manufacturing). Most applications take 2-3 hours of on-sight installation time. 


Q:   SOLAR SCREENS VS. WINDOW TINT ON GLASS?
A:   Solar Screen exterior applications prevent the contact of solar radiation and UV rays from contacting the glass and window
       frame.   This prevents any opf the sun's energy from penetgrating the home's exterior, thus reducing the heat as well as
       stopping the fading
       Whereas, window tinting is an interior application that filters the light but leaves your glass exposed to the heat.  Additionally,
       window tints are made up of very thin layers of metals.  It is the metals in the tint that allow the reflection in the tint.  However,
       metal is also a conductor for heat and cold and therefore allows the glass to pass that energy into your home or business.


Q:   WILL SOLAR SCREENS PROTECT MY HOME INTERIOR FROM FADING?
A:    Solar Screens block up to 90 percent of the UV Rays and heat from fading drapery, furniture and upholstery that bares the direct
        abuse of heat and sun rays. 


Q:   WHAT MAKES US DIFFERENT FROM OTHER COMPANIES?

A:   The biggest difference between solar screens is not only the screen material but the frame construction. We use some of the
       strongest frame material available which is 1" wide x 7/16 frame, whereas inexperienced companies will use a 3/4" wide x 5/16
       frame which can cause the screen to sag, bow, bag and/or become loose over time.   How your screens are installed is also an
       important part of the longevity of your solar screens and windows. Our expert installers will examine your windows to find the
       correct placement of screws and clips, if needed. This is done so that you as the homeowner will be able to remove and install the
       screens with ease.


Q:   SHOULD I CHOOSE 80% OR 90% SOLAR SCREEN MESH?
A:   There are a few reasons, the most common is to allow more sunlight to illuminate the room while still having some protection. Common applications for Suntex 80 are windows where the sun exposure is minimal, or on any room where
       maximum natural light is preferred.


Q:   WILL SUNTEX 90% BLOCK TOO MUCH LIGHT, MAKING MY ROOMS TOO DARK?
A:    Suntex 90 does make a noticeable change in the lighting of your rooms. It's a natural tradeoff, blocking most of the sun's heat does require a reduction in the amount of light coming in. In the end it is a personal choice and only you can say
        how much light is needed in your home. It may help to consider which concerns you more: having too much heat, -or- having too much shade.  Look at this picture, the straight-ahead daylight view is actually better than the old 70% sun
        screens (but the room will be darker). If you are trying see out at an extreme angle to the window then your view will be blocked, it's the same properties that block more of the sun as the angle gets sharper.


Q:   WHAT ABOUT LOW-E WINDOWS.  DO I NEED SOLAR SCREENS?
A:    There are two factors to consider in energy efficient low-E windows. The first is the insulating or R-value, which is the ability to stop thermal energy (cool or warm air) from passing through. The second is the Shading Coefficient (SC), or
        the ability of solar energy to pass through. In our climate a low SC is desired (yes, it's backwards - a low SC means greater shading ability). Some low-E windows have achieved an SC of .35, which is comparable to a shading efficiency of
        about 10%.  Solar screens do remain as the most effective at rejecting solar energy, but the choice is a personal one. The lowest possible cooling bills would be achieved with the lowest SC value (Suntex 90 has an SC of approximately .07).


Q:   HOW DO I KEEP MY SOLAR SCREENS CLEAN?
A:    If they are just dusty a light rinsing with a hose should easily take the dust off.  When dirt becomes "baked" on the screen they are a little harder to clean. A soft window scrubber and some mild detergent (such as Dawn) should do the
        trick. Be sure to rinse the screen off well to remove all the detergent. Also take care not to stretch the screen out of shape.


Q:   DO SOLAR SCREENS AFFECT MY WINDOW WARRANTY?
A:   No.  Our Solar Screens are attached over the window, not to the window.  Tint or films applied to the glass often void the warranty.  The window warranty will not cover attachments to the window (it doesn't need to, the screens have
       their own warranty). Read your own window warranty and I think you will find it is reasonable and aligned with common sense logic. Properly installed screens do not interfere in any way with the function or integrity of the window, and
       should not adversely affect the window warranty. 


Q:    ARE EXTERIOR SHADES MORE EFFICIENT THAN INTERIOR SHADES OR LOW-E WINDOWS?
A:   YES, without question. This is an answer highlighted by the U.S. Dept. of Energy ... "interior shading is not as effective
       as exterior shading". Windows and shading devices are rated by their Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC),
       previously known as Shading Coeficiency (SC).  (source: US Dept. of Energy's pamphlet)

       LOW-E WINDOWS. Depending upon various factors, Low-E Windows offer a Solar Heat Gain Coefficient ratings of
       anywhere between .33 to .71.   (source: http://wiki.naturalfrequency.com/wiki/Shading_Coefficient)

       INTERIOR SHADES. Statistics for Hunter Douglas' BEST interior shade ... the Duette honeycomb shade, shows the
       Duette shade Solar Heat Gain Coefficient ratings ranging between .15 to .63. (source: http://www.blindalley.com/
          portfolios/hunterdouglas/portfolioslarge/duetteenergyefficiency.html#Energy)
 
       WINDOW TINT. As a whole Window Tint offers a Solar Heat Gain Coefficient ratings of anywhere between .40 to .98.
       (source: http://www.ppg.com/corporate/ideascapes/resglass/homeowners/product/Pages/ProdInfoSolarControl.aspx

        Now compare those numbers to Exterior Shading Products, such as solar Solar Screens. The Phifer Suntex Heavy Duty
        Solar Screen shows a Solar Heat Gain Coefficient rating of between .15 to .07 for Suntex 80, and .08 to .07 for Suntex 90.
        CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE PHIFER SUNTEX SPECIFICATIONS SHEET .  The graph to the right shows how
        the Sun's movements work in conjunction with our Screens/Shades.  When reading the SHGC charts for products, one
        needs to know what the various numbers mean, such as TS, RS, and AS.  The TS (Solar Transmittance) value should be
        LOW, the lower value represents the least amount of solar gain through the Screen/Shade.   The RS (Solar Reflectance),
        should, too, be a low number as it represents the reflecting of the Sun towards the Window, while the AS (Solar
        Absorbance) should be high as this represents the amount of Sun the Screen/Shade is holding within the fabric so it doesn't
        reach the window.


Q:   HOW DO WINDOW AND TINT COMPANIES CLAIM BETTER UV PROTECTION THAN OTHER WINDOW 
      HEAT REDUCTION PRODUCTS?

A:   The trick to this sales technique are the words "UV Protection".  Most if not all window and window tint manufacturers and distributors use this misleading terminology.  First, window tint does not provide better "UV Protection", it just 
       simply provides UV Protection and that's it, very much comparable to other like products.  Second, the trick is that UV Protection doesn't COOL your home/business, it simply yields fading of items within your home.  Third, the Solar
       Energy that enters your home or business is made up of several types Electromagnetic Radiants, such as microwaves, infrared radiation, visible light, gamma rays, ultraviolet radiation (UV-Rays), and x-rays. 

      UV-Rays only make up 4% of this total energy from the Sun.  Therefore, when a salesman approaches a customer and states that his/her window or tint reduces 70% - 90% of "UV-Rays", essentially they are telling you that they can
      reduce the Sun's energy entering your home by 3% - 4%.  Additionally, while window tint has a long history of disappointed customers, it can also void window warranties and crack windows panes.

      WHEREAS, a solar screen reduces the SUN's TOTAL ENERGY by 80% to 90% does not affect the window warranties and has never cracked a window, actually to the contrary it protects windows from the sun's damaging effects.

Q:   CAN THE SUN'S REFLECTION OFF MY WINDOWS BURN MY GRASS AND BUSHES?
A:    Most definitely!!  We have customers contact us all the time about their windows (especially Low-E windows) burning their grass and bushes.  We have even had customers contact us with the same problems melting their artificial grass.
       The sun's reflection off windows is very powerful.  For example, the melting point of artificial grass is about 245 degrees. 






























Q:   WHEN IS A WARRANTY AN ACTUAL WARRANTY IN COLORADO?
A:   Some manufacturers claim to have a "LIFETIME WARRANTY".  In Colorado a "lifetime warranty" can mean whatever the seller wants it to mean, according to the Colorado Attorney General's Office; however, the Federal Trade    
      Commission states that a warranty MUST state the EXACT number of years.  We have had calls about a certain solar screen dealer claiming "lifetime warranty".  This material is not of the quality that the material we use in our
      solar screen manufacturing process. 

      OUR MANUFACTURER'S HAVE ACTUAL WARRANTIES ... SOLAR SCREEN MATERIAL -- 10 YEAR WARRANTY, OUR ROLLING SHADE MANUFACTURER -- 10 YEAR WARRANTY, and OUR ROLLING
      SHUTTER  MANUFACTURERS HAVE A 5 YEAR AND 3 YEAR WARRANTIES ... NO TRICKS NO GIMMCKS!


Q:   CAN WINDOW TINT CRACK MY WINDOWS?
A:   Yes they sure can.  There are many downfalls to window tint which unfortunately window tint companies neglect to tell their customers,
        along with forgetting to tell their customers that window tint (along with Low-E Windows - basically the same thing).  That's why I call
        these people "Window Tint Victims".   Window tint companies have many "excuses" why window cracking occurs.  The simple fact is this ...
        window tint heats up the window to the point of cracking, but it's not just window tint.  The reflective window shades similar to what we 
        place in cars also crack windows .. yes it can crack your car window as well.

​       How does it heat up your window?  Window tint is made up of  tiny metallic flakes.  Metal of course is a heat conductor.  So as the
       metal flakes heat up on your window, it will in turn heat up your window as well.  I had a customer contact me once, she was curious between
       Solar Screens.   She had several window tint samples (about 2" x 3" samples) that the tint guy put on her window to look through.  I asked her to
       touch the window tint sample and when she did she could feel how hot the glass was, as apposed to the Solar Screen sample I held up to the
       window.  However, it's not just cracking, but tint can also cause seal blow-outs resulting in moisture between your panes of glass.


Q:   SHOULD I LEAVE MY SOLAR SCREENS ON DURING THE WINTER?
A:   This is a customer's preference. However, solar screens do provide some insulation for your windows and we do recommend that a customer try the solar screens n the windows for one winter and compare the difference.  

       During the winter, the sun is at about 30 degrees on the horizon in Colorado. This actually provides more passive solar to pass through the solar screen to reach the window, but it also allows the solar screen to insulate the window against
       the cold temperatures ... keeping the cold winds off the glass much like a storm door.  Additionally, there are less daytime hours in the winter season, it is also usually more overcast, limiting your chances of passive solar heating. Solar
       Screens also create a barrier for thermal equilibrium keeping the temperature of the glass warmer.  The warmer you keep the glass, the less convection heat you need to use in your house, conserving energy.

      See the images below ... these windows/doors have single-pane glass.  One has a solar screen over the window which shows a 4.5 degree warmer temperature during the winter than the picture of the window without solar screen. These
      were taken within minutes of each other ....




























Q:   DOES SCREEN COLOR REALLY MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
A:   YES!   I cannot even begin to tell you how much.   The following pics are from one of our customers who bought Interior Shades from a shade and blinds dealer in Colorado (before they discovered us).  As we were installing their rolling
       shutters the Customer asked me why his familyroom was so warm even though he had new expensive windows and an interior shade on his window.  I asked, "are you sure you want to know?"  I explained that first and foremost, Interior
       Shades do not stop the heat coming into the house ... Interior Shades are merely light control  --  anyone who tells you different is, well, we will call it "uninformed".

       Black fabric, or even Brown, offer the best visibility when looking out of your home.  THAT'S A GREAT THING!  However, both of these colors offer the best Solar Absorbance (remember we talked about this in a previous Question).
       While this is great for EXTERIOR shades, when you use something that attracts the heat and dispurses it inside of a home/business, as it is designed to do outside of your home, thus you have effectively installed a "heater" inside
       your home.

       Just look at the tempurature that can be generated by placing the wrong product inside, or even outside your home/business.  Products are designed to perform specific tasks.   When an "uninformed" dealer sells products that they have no   
       real idea how they work, this type of thing happens ....































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Enviro Screens and Shutters, Inc. and Enviro Shades Manufacturing, Inc., specialize in security shutters, rolling shutters, rolling shades, and solar screens for residential and commercial Colorado and Nevada customers. We are family owned and operated with over 36 years of Colorado and Nevada quality customer care. We can handle any size residential and commercial job.  For more information and a free estimate, call Enviro Screens and Shutters at 303-794-2072 or 800-221-4613.