Pat Martin was not happy that evening he came home from a day at the KRXQ office. The house was unusually cool—and in the summer, when high energy draws mean high flying energy bills.

“Who left the air-conditioning on?” is not a good note to end your day on, even if you are the wild man of rock and roll radio.

But Martin’s assumption, thankfully, was wrong. No one had fiddled with his thermostat. His new Hall’s windows were simply working that well—even in 92-degree temperatures. “I’m so used to it now I don’t even think about it, but the difference was shocking,” his wife, Monica Lowe, recalls.

Windows play a large role in homeowners’ climate control options, so as a tip of the hat to Martin’s livelihood, here’s the countdown of the top hits:

  • When the temperatures will drop to mid-70s or lower at night, open your windows after the sun goes down. The fresh air will cool your rooms faster than you think, particularly if you open sets of windows on both sides to create a cross breeze. The ultimate strategy: crack a window on the main floor of the house, but open a window on the second floor on the opposite side as wide as it will go. Set up an electric fan by that upstairs window to suck out the hot air as it rises.
  • Keep your blinds closed during the day. They will act as a barrier to those heat rays trying to penetrate your exterior.
  • Upgrade your Sacramento windows to low-E coated panes with an argon gas filling between the glass, as the combination that offers the best option for blocking heat. (Bonus: Energy Star-certified windows lower household energy bills by an average of 12 percent nationwide, according to the Department of Energy. You’ll also produce less CO2 per year (up to 2,000 pounds, to be precise) when you replace double pane windows.)
  • Look for a low solar heat gain coef­ficient (SHGC). SHGC is a measure of solar radiation admitted through a window, so the lower the number, the more you reduce heat gain throughout the day in Central Valley zip codes.

Questions? Our doors (and windows) are open at Hall’s Window Center to help you find the answers.