7.18 Shutters and porches that work

7.18.USA-5-detail-b Highlights Relevant to Sustainable Design:

We can keep learning more from shutters.

I have drawn and written about shutters multiple times in this book to compare, contrast, and explore paths forward since almost all buildings have window openings. Windows are basically holes in the thermal boundary of a home, given that the insulation value of double-glazed insulating windows is still often only 15 percent of the insulation R value of the walls. So we could rethink shutters as insulation panels to keep the warm air inside in the winter and the cool air inside in the summer. With the latest smart controls, imagine shutters that automatically fold closed or slide across at night to save energy. The lower left corner of this sketch includes windows with a curved shadow at the bottom of each shutter. The large half-circle bracket is not a shutter dog but a traditional solution that accomplishes the goal. These curved brackets hold back the shutters. They are forged from iron and measure about eight to ten inches across.

Additional Highlights Relevant to Sustainable Design:

Rethink the porch.

On the right, the farmhouse with the traditional porch is a great place to relax at the end of the day. The front porch is part of a nostalgic American tradition. Aside from a place to relax, a porch has several advantages. As discussed previously relative to the Hungarian porches and houses in Hungary 4: Detail (c), a mid- to high-density community is strengthened when a porch encourages a “public eye” to help augment the police force. This idea of active and extrovert residency versus passive and introvert residency has not yet been fully explored in an age of increasing technology that focuses our attention internally.

Author and illustrator: Charlie Szoradi is an architect, inventor, and the CEO of Independence LED Lighting. He writes about many other topics related to shutter design through his extensive travels around the world.

If you have found this posting online, it is an excerpt from Mr. Szoradi’s book Learn from Looking that served as the inspiring seed content for this drawing share resource. For additional drawings and insights on protecting windows, we hope that you enjoy exploring You can search via general terms such as sustainability as well as narrower terms such as shutters, shutter dogs, thermal boundary, double-glazed insulating windows, insulation panels, and smart controls.

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