When making 2012 New Year's resolutions, resolve to be kind to the environment by saving energy. Reducing your home's energy use not only helps conserve natural resources but it also saves you money.
The Professional Awning Manufacturers Association has an easy way to achieve that resolution by adding fabric awnings and canopies over doors and windows.
"People don't have to make drastic changes to their homes in order to reduce their energy use and save money," said Michelle Sahlin, managing director of the Professional Awning Manufacturers Association (PAMA). "Awnings are an easy home upgrade that enhance the aesthetic quality of a home, while reducing the energy used by running air conditioners at full-blast."
Adding window awnings to a home can help ease electricity usage (a top producer of carbon emissions) for an air conditioner. When combined with an air conditioner, awnings can reduce the amount of electricity needed to cool a house by preventing solar radiation from penetrating through windows.
"Awnings are the simplest thing you can do to lower your energy costs," says Illinois homeowner Barbara Neuerman, "We're not talking about replacing central air conditioning units; we're not talking about ripping out 37 windows in the house. We are talking about putting up 9 canvas awnings, and possibly saving as much as 30 percent on my energy bill."
"We looked at the cost of our air conditioning bills in the summertime, which could go as high as $500 a month. That was just becoming unacceptable," said Ms. Neuerman. "I went online and started to do some research as to what awnings could actually do… I was very surprised to find out that, in this climate, my energy savings by adding awnings to the front of the house would be as great as 30 percent per month. That's a huge number." That calculation on savings comes to around $150 a month in the hot summer months.
For more information on the energy-saving benefits of awnings, visit http://www.awninginfo.com.