By G.E.T. Staff
In the old days, even before electric fans, awnings provided a measure of relief from the heat of a summer day. In those days, an awning and an open window for some ventilation was about the best a person could do to keep cool during the heat of the summer. Like many things we had in the past, they had advantages we seem to have forgotten.
Awnings’ low-tech approach functions quite well, as an alternative to air conditioning for keeping a house cool.
The temperature under an awning can easily be 20° F lower than the temperature in the full sun. That means that if the sun is shining brightly through a window, the interior of the room can heat up very fast compared with what it would with awnings. They reduce the cost of running the air conditioning, even making their use unnecessary on many days. That, in turn, reduces both our expenses and our carbon emissions.
Apart from the fact that they save us money, make us more comfortable, and help save the planet, all at the same time, awnings have more to recommend them. In addition to blocking the heat of the sun, they also block the UV light, and this is important. While we do need the health benefits of the vitamin D that we receive from the sun, too much exposure to sun can lead to skin cancer. Awnings offer a health solution, which is better than chemicals on our skin that have their own side effects,
In addition, sunlight fades many colors used in fabrics, so when a sofa is close to a window, the parts that get a lot of sun can fade. This could have been prevented with a little thought to awnings or shades.
Today’s awnings come in modern designs, colors, shapes and sizes, which can provide a wonderful way to decorate many buildings. We cannot say that for air conditioners.