Shading windows from summer sun

I'm looking for advice on how to temporarily shade a few windows each year that primarily face S/SW. I was thinking of the pros/cons of putting a tree in the front (obviously this would take awhile), awnings, and solar window screens. The screens appear to be the most flexible option from the standpoint that I could remove them in the winter to take advantage of the sun, or for a particularly windy day (I'm in the NE).
I'd like to ask if anyone has experience with the solar window screens? Do they reduce the amount of heat enough that would make it worth the price (I've seen some for $175, custom fitted)?
If so, a popular option that I've seen on the web are the 'DIY' kits. Are these worth the effort for someone with basic skills or is it just as easy to assemble the project materials yourself?
Are there any special tools or other expenses that I would need to consider that would not be necessary with the typical kits?
Thank you, Dave
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A deciduous tree is my long term recommendation. It would provide shade to much more than the windows. I'm not familiar with the screens, etc. that would give you immediate relief.
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On Tue 14 Jun 2005 05:57:33p, wrote in alt.home.repair:

We're in a radically different climate, the desert SW, but we wouldn't be without the solar screens. I can't give you a percentage, but there is a very noticable difference in the heat load. Of course, in our climate we run the A/C 24/7 almost half the year, but our electric bills clearly went down after the screens were installed. Custom made screens for the entire house cost less than $400.
--
Wayne Boatwright **
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My folks had those screens installed around '75 and they are still going strong. Not sure how much it cost way back then. The front of their house had a west exposure and the rooms really got hot even with the ac running. After the install, they drastically reduced the heat.
For myself, I installed the solar film on my storm windows facing west. It was well worth the cost and effort (diy) to do so. If you go this route, just be careful and meticulous when you apply the film. It is probably the cheapest solution. I remove the storm windows in the winter to take advantage of the heating.
On 14 Jun 2005 17:57:33 -0700, tom snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

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We use 6X6' roll down white plastic shades (hung outside the windows) from Lowes/HomeDepot. Cheap..About $ 11.00 each. Theyre similar to the split bamboo kind but are like long flat white plastic soda-straw material Roll em down early AM and then up about 2PM when the sun swings around.
Not the best solution but works well keeping the heat out til I decide on some other application. A neighbor has been using theirs for years
R
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I went the route of the solar film in my prior house to protect furniture and carpeting and was very pleased with the results I had a 3200 ft house in MA done professionally for $1400 or $55 a window .Dramatic improvement in need for AC was a plus Later found that you can DIY but the materials aren't generally sold this far north.Just got some shipped in and plan on doing selected windows on my new home I could ship you a sample if your only looking at one window Bob

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You might consider an overhang that blocks high-angle summer sun (with a 90-lat+22.5 elevation) and admits low-angle (90-lat-22.5) winter sun.

Wow. You might look into wide rolls of plastic "greenhouse shadecloth" which blocks up to 100% sun. I use 80% shadecloth at 14 cents/ft^2.
Nick
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tom snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

Funny you mention this, I JUST put up film on my windows this past week. From Home Depot, I got the 'Platinum' film which is supposed to be the best available.
It worked great. I have very high ceilings, and no shade from any trees. I would get home from work at it would be 80-82 in my house with the AC constantly running. After I put up the film, it is now a consistent 75 in my house and the AC is turning on and off regularly.
It took me a window or two to get really good results. The main thing with the DIY kits is that you don't let the film stick to itself. It would certainly be easier with 2 people, but I did it by myself. Don't buy any special solutions, just make soapy water with some baby shampoo. You spray the windows really good, spray the film (there's a backing that gets peeled off) put the film up, spray the exposed side as well, squeege it out (you can buy the $3 kit from HD as well), then trim the edges with a razor blade.
It's easy to get the bubbles out, looks good from the inside, and will save you $$$.
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Tom:
Most other posters don't seem to be after temporary shading solutions. I'd be very interested in knowing what you find out from your post. Please email me or post the (unposted) results.
Thanks
Lee Elson tom snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

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I appreciate all who replied. I'm leaning toward looking further into the shade cloth (no pun intended :-), and the screens. The blinds are still a consideration, although they would require a permanent exterior mount and manual effort to go outside to open/close...although, for the price I may revisit this option. The tree option is a little more remote at this time, due to the time necessary for benefit and permanent nature of it.
I will follow up when I decide and with results.
Thank you, Dave
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I had sunscreens on a house with west facing windows. Since they are on the outside, they stop the sun before it hits the glass. The frames are just like window screens, sized appropriately, and easy to install and uninstall. If you attach them properly, you won't need to remove them on a windy day, but you will be able to remove them for the winter. Their downside is they do block quite a bit of the view. Trade-offs!
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