In this day and age, technology is as much a part of the home as anything else. Technology offers convenience and creates solutions to problems that have long plagued the homeowner. Garage door openers lift the heavy door without forcing us out of our cars, and video intercom systems allow us to see who is at the door without opening it and putting ourselves in danger. It seems that nearly every aspect of the home is touched by the 21st century, and so too are shades.
Window shades are becoming very big in the home automation game. Why? There are many benefits to the use of automated shades for the home. The first of which is a heightened sense of privacy. Particularly in the winter months, we often return home when the sun has already gone down. As anyone who has passed a home with open windows at night knows, once the lights are on, and open window is quite literally a window into your world. Setting shades to a timer so that they are already drawn by the time you get home eliminates the issue of the world seeing in as you situate yourself in the home after work.
Although some might think that automating something that was once hand-operated would drive up energy costs, automated shades actually help to curb energy costs. In the summer months, sun streaming through windows heats a space and makes it necessary to cool the space more with air conditioning systems. By setting the shades to shut themselves during the times of day when the sun is hitting the window directly, many of the would-be heat in the room is averted. Similarly, blocking the sun from entering the room directly helps to protect nice furniture, which may fade over time due to direct sunlight exposure.
Automated window shades are especially useful in spaces with high ceilings where manually opening and closing the shades is either excessively difficult or impossible. Automated systems are operated either using a control panel or a remote control, eliminating the need for an individual to actually reach the shades to operate them. This aspect of automated shades is particularly useful in very large spaces such as stadiums with a lot of windows where previously sun would heat the atrium in the summer months.
There are two types of window coverings when it comes to automation: drapes versus shades. Drapes can easily be motorized with a home installation kit. However, if you prefer the look of shades, you will need a special kit so as to install a rolling and unrolling mechanism for the shades themselves. Many manufacturers now make such kits due to the popularity of motorized shades. Of course, if you don’t want to install the system yourself, you may always hire a professional to install the shades and walk you through the control panel and automation system.