What Is The Difference – Room Darkening Vs. Blackout

Room Darkening Vs. Blackout Window Treatments

Many of our clients at Window Products are concerned about the amount of light that comes in their rooms. It’s especially true in the sunny summer months here in Connecticut—many people want darkness. All too often, customers think that “room darkening” and “blackout” are the same, but it’s not entirely true. Read on for more information!

Hunter Douglas Opacity Scale

Within their product line, Hunter Douglas Window Fashions uses a scale to describe the opacity differences.

Use Opacity

  1. Sheer – Light can enter the room while the treatment reduces glare
  2. Semi-sheer – Light is diffused and the treatment offers moderate privacy
  3. Semi-opaque – Light is filtered and the treatment blocks the view
  4. Opaque – Almost all light is blocked
  5. Blackout – All light is blocked and the treatment offers the highest privacy levels

Blackout Window Coverings

Look for a rating of 5 to help ensure that no light will enter through the material—that will give you blackout coverage. Consider Duette®, Architella®, or Applause® Honeycomb shades in an opaque fabric. These offer a silver metallic lining that prevents light from passing through. However, if you mount the honeycomb shade inside the window, there might still be light gaps. Either adding blackout drapery panels or mounting the shade on the outside of the window to eliminate the light gap can fix this.

Room-Darkening Window Coverings

To get the proper room-darkening level, the key is the fabric, color, and material type. Opaque and semi-opaque fabrics found in Duette® Honeycomb Shades will darken a room, but do not necessarily completely eliminate light. Look for a rating of 4 or higher for room-darkening benefits. Or you can get a shade that has a lower rating and add a room-darkening liner to it—it can be sewn directly on the face fabric, or it can be operated independently to give you more flexibility. Provenance® Woven Textures would be a good option. Still keep in mind the light gap if you use an inside mount for the shade. Many Hunter Douglas horizontal blinds offer the de-Light™ feature, which eliminates rout holes, so there is no pin light coming through. Choices for this include Parkland® Hardwood Blinds or Modern Precious Metals.

Blackout and Room Darkening in Fairfield CT

At Window Products, we’ve been serving Connecticut since 1994 with two showrooms – one in Branford and one in Southbury. We offer the full line of Hunter Douglas window fashions, a nice selection of screen shades, and a wide variety of awnings and shades. Our personalized service, quality products, and professional installation services ensure you’ll find the perfect window treatment or awning for your home or business. Contact us for more details.