Installing blinds, curtains, or tinted glass are the most common ways to keep the glare of the sun out of a room. Yet blinds and curtains tend to be more costly to acquire. And they somehow make the room feel bleak, a bit more cramped, and somewhat less relaxing to be in.
This effect runs counter to what most architects want to accomplish when designing a house. The trend is to allow more natural light to enter the place, to make a room feel more serene, and to rely less on artificial lighting. Using bigger picture windows has become the norm, especially in houses that feature the modern, Tropical Asian style of architecture. And still, having large windows becomes futile if you’re just going to cover it up with heavy curtains or gloomy tint.
Enter Edmund Lee, whose company markets environment-friendly home materials and accessories. He says while curtains or heavily tinted glass can keep the glare out, they don’t really get the temperature of a room down. The heat still manages to enter the room. The result is you have a darker room that isn’t necessarily cooler. His company, Trendway Builders, is distributing a new kind of glass protective coating dubbed the Nano Coat.
The product works like a lighter tint and is barely visible to the naked eye, yet it effectively keeps UV rays out of the room. To prove his point, Lee demonstrated the difference between a piece of glass coated with Nano and another with a darker shade of conventional tint. Both glass pieces were placed in a machine equipped with an 80-watt light bulb and a temperature reader. The light bulb was turned on and the temperature in the two areas protected by the two glass pieces predictably rose. However, the space protected by the heavily tinted glass was hotter as the temperature soared at a much quicker rate as compared with the space protected by the Nano-coated glass. After several seconds, the difference in temperature was pegged at roughly 30 degrees centigrade.
Or when applied to a regular glass, the glass can reject 90 percent of the UV-A rays, and 92 percent of the Infrared rays. “Normal, uncoated glass rejects only 30 percent of UV-A rays and 24 percent of the infrared rays,” says Lee. “The difference in room temperature can range from three to five degrees.”
A typical room can save up to P1,000 of electric bill per month. As the room remains cooler, homeowners won’t have to depend too much on air-conditioning, which reduces electric consumption. “And even if you use the air-conditioner, it doesn’t have to strain as hard to bring down the temperature in the room” says Lee.
Tests conducted in Ateneo de Manila also revealed that this solution is non-toxic and is water-based. This makes it environment-friendly and non-flamable. Nano Coat dries up in 20 minutes upon application in normal conditions and is odorless. This technology is for both new and existing glass doors and windows.
“We’ve tried different cleaning materials like detergent and glass cleaner and it has not shown any effect. So maintenance is not difficult to do,” Lee adds.
While the initial cost of acquiring the Nano Coat may be more, it’s cheaper to maintain on the long run as opposed to acquiring and maintaining blinds, curtains, or tint. Likewise, the interior design of the house is not altered in any way and the rooms can still remain bright without having to feel hot.
Manila Bulletin Newspaper
By DENNIS LADAW
September 29, 2010, 9:09am