can uv light get through blinds

Can UV Light Get Through Blinds?

Can UV light get through blinds? I never realised the importance of a good quality blind until I noticed my furniture fading. The market for blinds is huge and ever-expanding, so there’s a lot of choice. But, the type and quality of your blinds can impact the amount of UV light that filters through into your room. Some materials block out UV rays entirely, but this isn’t the case for most thinner materials. Today, I’ll take a closer look at which blinds can protect your home from UV light, and why you might want to invest in a thicker blind to block these rays.


Can UV Rays Get Through Blinds?

The answer to this question depends on the window blinds. The thickness of the threads and tightness of the weave of the materials used on the blinds will have an impact. Thick threading blocks off UV light. If the spaces between the weaves are minuscule, less than a percent of UV light will penetrate.

Regular window blinds allow Ultra Violet rays to penetrate because they’re made from light materials. To keep this light blocked off, you will have to get custom window blinds that darken your rooms during the daytime. Look for window blinds with a second layer to keep off UV light. Blinds with a single layer only block out 20% of UV rays. Blinds made from umbrella-like materials or sun shield materials (such as wood and metals) block over 95% of direct UV light.

Is it Important to Block UV Light?

One of the most well known and common problems caused by UV radiation is skin damage like sunburn. Prolonged exposure can also contribute to issues like premature ageing and serious health problems like cancer.

But, UV rays don’t just cause damage to us. They can also be harmful to our furniture, flooring, and general decor. UV light streaming in from outside is a major reason that furniture and flooring fades faster than it would otherwise. But, UV light can also cause hard flooring to warp out of shape, and even to crack. So, it’s not unusual to want to block it from your home.

Do Blinds Provide Any UV Protection?

Although not all blinds will offer the same level of UV protection, they’ll all provide some UV protection. The most effective UV-blocking blinds tend to block off all light, leaving your room dark. However, if you want natural light to flow inside your home, there are other options you can consider. For instance, you can go for window treatments that block UV rays but allow light to pass through. Let’s take a closer look at blinds that can offer some protection whilst still letting sunlight through.

can uv light get through blinds

Sheer Shades

These shades function both as window blinds and window shades. Most sheer shade brands are made with horizontal or vertical slats (blinds) that appear to float between the layers of soft and translucent sheer outer fabric. The design allows you to tilt open and close the slats (blinds) while the outer layer (sheer) remains in place. The activity allows light to penetrate your space while the sheer layer filter out damaging UV rays.

Sheer shades’ soft and delicate appearance makes rooms seem like they don’t have any window treatment. Regardless of their appearance, they effectively control the light coming into the room. With different control levels, sheer shades can be set into angles that transform light, creating an intimate and cozy environment. Sheer shades with light dimming materials come in handy if you wish to darken a room.

Solar Shades

These shades are the perfect window treatments when you want to minimize ultraviolet light. Solar shades allow light through but keep UV rays in check. They are perfect for media rooms because they keep the sun’s glare away from tv screens.

Solar shades are my go-to blinds when I need to block not only UV light but also protect furnishings, diffuse light, and control heat buildup. Solar shades are made from screen-like material; they don’t have any gaps or slats. And, their weaves are tighter, providing a corresponding shade percent from 3 to 10. Solar shades only let minimal light (10% and less) penetrate rooms and filter out ultraviolet rays. So, they won’t be ideal for people that want a brighter room.

Roller Shades

These shades are window coverings made from materials that wrap around cylinders. They can be made from various materials, including polyester, bamboo, linen, and other synthetic fibers. You will love roller shades, thanks to their blackout capabilities. But, bear in mind that not all roller blinds are the same thickness or the same quality. So, some will let in more UV light than others.

Go for roller shades with thick fabrics to block out UV rays and any light. These are perfect for media rooms and bedrooms when you want to lie down during the daytime. Roller shades come in many colors, fabrics, mounting, shades, and light filtration styles.

Can UV Light Go Through a Window?

Yes! Ordinary glass stops UVB rays but allows UVA to pass through. Home windows are mostly made from double-layered soda-lime glass, allowing UV rays to penetrate. But they offer some form of protection against harmful solar rays.

Unfortunately, UVA rays that pass through glass are the main contributors to premature skin ageing. Combined (UVB and UVA) can lead to the development of skin cancer. So, sitting next to windows for long periods when it’s sunny can cause you to suffer from freckles and sun tans that will cause your skin to suffer long-term damage. Always use sunscreen when sitting next to windows that allow sunlight through. To block UV rays fully from your windows, invest in a good quality blind.

Does UV Light Go Through Objects?

Ultraviolet rays emanate from radiation between the electromagnetic spectrum (x-ray vision) and visible light (what we see) range. UV rays result from high temperatures from objects such as the sun, lasers, and high-temperature lamps. 67% of UV radiation sunlight gets absorbed by the earth’s atmosphere, while 33% affects objects on the planet’s surface.

Most of these objects are unaffected by the radiation; however, some objects, such as fish, insects, road signages, and inks, get affected by UV rays exposure and start to glow. In humans, UV rays penetrate the skin thus making us suffer sunburns while others get a tan.

The molecules in some materials get damaged by UV rays. The molecules start breaking down leading to chemical and physical changes. The damage referred to as UV degradation affects both synthetic and natural polymers. When UV light penetrates your rooms, your furnishings:

  • Lose strength
  • Crack
  • Fade color
  • Disintegrate
  • Become less flexible

Can UV Light Get Through Blinds? The Bottom Line

Yes, UV light can go through blinds. But, there are blinds available to block them out. You can choose sheer shades that allow light to fill a room but block out UV light. Or, you can opt for solar shades to leave most of your room dark, allowing only little light to pass through.

Roller shades are the perfect bet for total blackout. Install these in rooms such as dark rooms (for traditional photo processing), bedrooms, and media rooms to keep not just UV rays out but also the stubborn afternoon sun glare!

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