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Old 06-24-2008, 01:18 PM
 
Location: The Frenchie Farm, Where We Grow 'em Big!
2,077 posts, read 3,970,638 times
Reputation: 1002
Default Windows facing west in Socal!!! Our living room is terrible hot!

We wanted to see if you guys and gals have any suggestions. We have a sliding glass door and a large window facing west. It's unbearable and the AC is not helping. We placed the window film on it and it helped, some! We do not want to use a lot of fans to cool off, we have two large fans operating at this time. Our lay out of our condo is weird. The floorplan has all the windows facing west w/ no window to the east for cross ventilation. The two windows are the SGD and the dining room windows. The other windows are covered by magnolia trees.

Our ideas are...

Energy efficient argon gas windows. Cost:$10K for 5 windows and a sliding glass door.

Hanging reflective fabric used from movie screens outside the windows of the patio. Cost:$45/yd.

Placing bamboo fencing to patio walls to block sun. Cost:$35/ft for 10ft high bamboo matting.

Now cost is irrelevant, our concern is which is more effective!

If there are different ideas you have used, please let us know before we melt away! But, I do need to loose wieght! It's a sauna in the living room at 300pm.

Thanks!
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Old 06-24-2008, 01:32 PM
 
18,733 posts, read 20,503,506 times
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We had this problem with east-facing windows in our first house. The metal storm door would get so hot you would get a burn if you grabbed the handle. The rooms would heat up terribly. Interior shades did no good.

We had 24" eaves above the area (California ranch) and purchased bamboo blinds that we hung from them at the outer edge. This shaded the windows, left a 24" air space for cooling, and allowed us to raise the "shade" after lunch.

Worked great and didn't cost that much.
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Old 06-24-2008, 01:35 PM
 
190 posts, read 433,813 times
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I don't know the best solution so will just tell you what we did.
We have west facing windows in our bedroom that face our patio. My first choice would have been to plant a tree but that wasn't going to happen in the concrete. Instead I put up a trellis and planted climbing flowers. It looks nice and shaded the windows.
In a previous house I installed an awning over west facing windows and door. There are great sun screen fabrics for these and retractable awnings if you want to be able to remove it during the cooler times of year.
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Old 06-24-2008, 01:41 PM
 
18,733 posts, read 20,503,506 times
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Thanks for the reminder Alter. I am so used to having it I forgot that we now use a Sun Setter awning over the south-facing windows in our family room, which also covers the deck.

Originally purchased for shade over the deck I discovered that by opening it far enough in the summer to just shade the windows and the house down to the deck level we can open the inside shades and enjoy the view without the heat gain.

A bit expensive, but worth every penny!
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Old 06-24-2008, 02:30 PM
 
Location: WA
3,940 posts, read 12,275,384 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tek_Freek View Post
Thanks for the reminder Alter. I am so used to having it I forgot that we now use a Sun Setter awning over the south-facing windows in our family room, which also covers the deck.

Originally purchased for shade over the deck I discovered that by opening it far enough in the summer to just shade the windows and the house down to the deck level we can open the inside shades and enjoy the view without the heat gain.

A bit expensive, but worth every penny!

I agree... awnings are the way to go. We have a SunSetter and are adding awning for two additional windows.
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Old 06-24-2008, 02:48 PM
 
Location: Tucson
42,851 posts, read 51,212,921 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brikag View Post
If there are different ideas you have used, please let us know before we melt away! But, I do need to loose wieght! It's a sauna in the living room at 300pm.

Thanks!
You may wanna look into double or triple (possibly blackout, if you like it) cellular shades. I'll have mine installed on Thursday and don't have experience yet. I like my house sunny and insulation wasn't the reason I decided to get them, but supposedly they're very energy-efficient.

Cellular Shades Insulate Your Homes (http://ezinearticles.com/?Cellular-Shades-Insulate-Your-Homes&id=1160671 - broken link)
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Old 06-24-2008, 02:56 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
11,102 posts, read 24,024,770 times
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"Hanging reflective fabric used from movie screens outside the windows of the patio. Cost:$45/yd."

Huh??? LOL. Movie screen material wouldn't hold up. That price seems high, too unless you are buying an aluminized 3D screen.


Bahama shutters?
Decorative wall o' water fountain running down the glass.
Exterior screens (stop the heat BEFORE it gets to the glass.
Exterior vertical blinds

"Now cost is irrelevant, our concern is which is more effective!"
Egyptian fan palm slaves?

Look for reflective concrete surfaces, like your patio. Those can act like solar concentrators. Cover 'em with plants, change the surface to indoor outdoor carpet, etc.

A couple of layers of gauzy sheers inside the windows could help cut the transmission of heat and trap a bit of it.
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Old 06-24-2008, 04:15 PM
 
Location: Apple Valley Calif
7,213 posts, read 10,773,821 times
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Go to a store that sells screens, and get solar screens. they block out 97% of the UV rays, and make a huge difference. We live in the So Calif desert and the screens were the first things we purchased when we moved in. We also installed roll down solar screens all along the patio. The sun goes down on the patio side, making it unusable in the hot summer afternoons. After we installed the roll downs, we can now use the patio again. I also installed four ceiling fans in the patio. It's 54 feet long, so requires several fans. Now we use the patio every day... and the house is much cooler. Haven't used the A/C yet this year
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Old 06-24-2008, 04:28 PM
 
Location: Tucson
42,851 posts, read 51,212,921 times
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Yeah, really, are we talking SoCal desert...? Because we Arizonans in Tucson or even in Phoenix don't go to such great lengths...
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Old 06-24-2008, 05:25 PM
 
Location: The Frenchie Farm, Where We Grow 'em Big!
2,077 posts, read 3,970,638 times
Reputation: 1002
Default Thank you

I would like to thank everyone who posted your advice. Some suggested trellises and awnings. Unfortunately, we live in a condo in Socal, so that means there are certain enhancements that we can and an not do. Trellises and awnings are out. Thank you, anyways! Solar screens are the possibility. They did allow us to do our bamboo matting, oddly enough, but we're also located in the windy part of Socal. The matting may blow away. Any more suggestions? We're going to decide in the next 5-6 days.

Thanks Again!
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