Friday, June 8, 2012

Pelmets and curtains

Just how long since you did something are you allowed to do a blog post on it? That's a question I've been asking myself recently, since blogging should probably be fairly up to date. It's somewhere between a week and a year I'd say, preferably on the lower end of the scale. Anyway, let's just pretend I did all this stuff in the recent past...

So, we finally got the curtains installed and pelmets up in time for winter. We found the pelmets on the verge a while ago and with a bit of modification to make them deep enough to surround the curtains they're doing a great job. We got the curtains installed by a local family business called Susie Q's and we're really happy with how they came up. They are made with fairly heavy fabric and lined with a separate layer of sunblock material. Amy chose the most expensive fabric in the shop for our bedroom...

Then we have a boring kind of neutral colour for the living room.

And finally we have foul blinds. No, fowl blinds for the kitchen (these are recessed into the wall so don't need a pelmet).

So what's the big deal I hear you ask. Well, installing good quality, double layer curtains with pelmets is one of the best ways to insulate your home. "Windows are often the weakest link when it comes to winter heat loss. In fact a single glazed, 3mm pane of glass can lose from 10 to 15 times more heat than insulated wall of the same area". To stop this heat loss you need a layer of still air between the window and the room. The best way to do this is with curtains and pelmets, where you can reduce heat loss by around 45%. This is about 20% better than the best double glazing! Curtains trap air between the glass and itself and pelmets stop the air from rising. As I explained in an earlier post: "A pelmet is a box type structure fixed to the wall above curtains. They stop heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer. In summer, air between the curtain and the window heats up. This warm air rises and escapes over the top of the curtain. This air movement sucks cool air in from the rest of the room to window. This cool air warms, rises, and so it goes on in a convective process. In winter the air by the window cools, sinks and draws warm air to the window in the same way and the process works in reverse". This info is all from a great article by Vic DPI.  

So we're fairly toasty right now as winter comes. Of course now there are other gaps to plug, such as walls (how to insulate brick veneerial disease?) and leaky hard wood floors...


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