It's Curtains for Cold

Curtains are more than cosmetic - they can minimise heat transfer through your windows, keeping your home more comfortable year round.

It's Curtains for Cold

As the chill of winter descends, homeowners begin the annual quest to keep their living spaces warm and cosy without breaking the bank. There are many energy-saving strategies, but one often overlooked hero stands out: window coverings. The right curtains and pelmets can play a crucial role in maintaining a comfortable home temperature and reducing heating costs. In this blog post, we will explore why these elements are essential for Australian homes during the winter months, detailing the benefits they offer and providing tips on how to maximize their effectiveness.

The Science of Heat Loss

Windows are one of the primary sources of heat loss in a home. Even with modern double-glazing, the glass can still allow heat to escape more quickly than through insulated wall space. During the winter, this heat loss not only makes your home less comfortable but also forces your heating system to work harder, which can significantly increase your energy bills.

Curtains: More Than Just Decor

Curtains do more than beautify a room; they serve as an essential barrier against the cold. The fabric acts as an additional layer of insulation, trapping heat inside and preventing it from escaping through the windows. The effectiveness of curtains in insulation depends on three key factors: material, coverage, and layering.

  • Material: Thermal and heavy fabrics are best for insulation as they are denser and better at retaining heat.
  • Coverage: Ideally, curtains should extend beyond the window frame and reach the floor to cover the window completely, reducing air movement and heat exchange.
  • Layering: Using multiple layers of curtains or combining them with blinds can enhance their insulating properties.

Pelmets: Sealing the Top Gap

While curtains cover the window, there is still potential for heat loss at the top where the curtain rod is located. This is where pelmets come in. A pelmet is a framework placed above a window, usually over the curtains or blinds, that serves both decorative and practical purposes. It acts as a seal at the top of the curtains, preventing warm air from escaping over the top of the curtain and cold air from coming down behind them.

Benefits of Using Curtains and Pelmets in Winter

Enhanced Insulation

Curtains and pelmets significantly reduce heat transfer by trapping a layer of still air between the fabric and the glass. This simple action can improve the thermal efficiency of your windows by up to 25%, depending on the type and condition of the window and the fabric used.

Cost-Effective Heating

With better insulation from effective window coverings, your home retains heat more effectively, meaning your heating system doesn’t have to work as hard. This reduction in energy consumption can translate into noticeable savings on your energy bills.

Comfort and Control

Beyond energy savings, the enhanced insulation provided by curtains and pelmets improves the overall comfort of your home. By maintaining a more consistent internal temperature, they help eliminate cold drafts, contributing to a snugger home environment during the cold months.

Privacy and Light Control

Winter days can be grey and overcast, but there are still days when sunlight can be harsh. Curtains and pelmets provide excellent control over light, allowing you to insulate your home while adjusting the light to suit your needs without compromising on privacy.

Choosing the Right Window Coverings

When selecting curtains and pelmets for winter use, consider the following:

  • Fabric Type: Opt for thermal-backed or heavy fabrics like velvet, tapestry, or wool. These materials offer the best insulation.
  • Color: Darker colors absorb heat and can help warm a room when the sun is shining.
  • Fit: Ensure curtains are well-fitted to the window dimensions to maximize their insulative properties. Consider professional help for custom fittings.


As Australians brace for winter, understanding and leveraging the thermal properties of curtains and pelmets can make a significant difference in how we experience our homes during the colder months. Not only do these window coverings offer a chance to reduce energy consumption and save on heating costs, but they also enhance the comfort and aesthetic of our living spaces. By investing in the right window coverings, you can enjoy a warmer, more sustainable home this winter. Remember, sometimes, the best defence against the cold is as simple as drawing the curtains.

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