With sustainability key for many Aussies doing home builds, renovations or updates, there are lots of environmental considerations to take into account, including your choice of blinds.
Thinking about the eco-credentials of window coverings may not seem like a big deal when it comes to sustainability, but the reality is some options are eco-friendlier than others, which can make a big difference when it comes to your household’s energy savings
With an array to choose from when it comes to blinds - vertical blinds, venetian blinds, mini blinds and panel blinds just to name a few, it’s important to understand the basics.
Here’s the lowdown on finding the best blinds for your living room and bedroom.
Blinds and sustainability
Insulation is one of the big advantages of having blinds. As natural insulators, blinds are effective at curbing summer heat gain and reducing glare, while providing good light indoors. Then in cooler months, they help keep the home warm, reducing the need for heating.
The alternative is uncovered windows, which allow more air to escape the home. Indeed, with about 40% of a home’s heating lost through windows, leaving them uncovered will likely see you spend more energy on heating and air-con, lifting your carbon footprint.
Insulation is especially useful for living and bedrooms as they’re spaces in the house that often need the most heating and cooling, given how much time people spend there. So, when choosing blinds make sure to check out their thermal efficiency before buying.
There’s also lighting efficiency to think about. The good thing with horizontal slat-type blinds is that they can be adjusted to block and reflect direct sunlight onto ceilings, allowing you to take advantage of natural daylight while reducing the need for artificial lighting.
Don’t scrimp on blinds if you can afford not to. Choosing a quality window blind that will last is one of the best decisions you can make on sustainability in the bedroom and living room.
That’s because getting the longest lifespan out of your blinds means fewer replacements and less waste that’ll end up in landfill, as well as the energy used to make new blinds. This is particularly important in the living room and bedroom, spaces that usually get a lot of use.
Design and materials
Generally speaking, blinds made from natural materials that are harvested using eco-friendly methods have less of an impact on their lifestyle.
- Wood blinds: these are a popular choice and can provide a natural look to your room, but make sure they’re made from timber that is harvested through a sustainable material.
- Faux wood blinds: these durable blinds give the look of real wood blinds but are produced from recycled substances. By choosing a wood alternative, you’re doing the planet a favour by not adding to demand for real wood, but making sure the manufactured material is non-toxic and recyclable.
- Aluminium blinds: aluminium can be recycled, with the blinds able to be taken to any scrap metal yard, or recycling centre when you want to replace them. Recycling aluminium is also great material as it means less mining and less energy is needed to make new aluminium.
- Linen blinds: linen is a fantastic natural option as it’s a highly sustainable material, sourced from flax, which produces very little waste. It only requires natural rainfall and very few pesticides.
- Fabric: eco-friendly fabrics like organic cotton, bamboo and hemp are also good options when it comes to sustainable materials. What’s more, there are manufactured fabrics from recycled sources, for instance from used PET bottles, that are all energy efficient and can be recycled when they reach the end of their life.