PAMA Energy Study: The Impact on Energy Use and Peak Demand of Awnings and Roller Shades in Residential Buildings

Final Report includes:
- Four types of awnings
- Five types of exterior roller shades
- Three types of windows
- Four window orientations
- Energy Information Agency 2010 utility prices by state
- Total of 480 simulations for each of 50 cities
- Typical weather year and hot year analysis

- Download of Final Report
(6.4mb PDF)
- Link to Awning Data for Each City
- Link to Exterior Shades Data for Each City

Cities in the Study:
AK - Anchorage
AL Birmingham

AL Mobile
AR Little Rock
AZ - Phoenix
AZ - T ucson
CA - Burbank
CA - Fresno
CA - Palm Springs
CA- Sacramento
CA - San Diego
CA - San Francisco
CO - Denver
DC - Washington
FL - Jacksonville
FL - Miami
FL - Tampa
GA - Atlanta
HI - Honolulu
ID - Boise
IL - Chicago
IN - Indianapolis
LA - New Orleans
MA - Boston
ME - Portland
MI - Detroit
MN - Minneapolis
MO - Kansas City
MO - St. Louis
NC - Charlotte
NE - Omaha
NM - Albuquerque
NV - Las Vegas
NY - Buffalo
NY - New York
OH - Cincinnati
OK - Oklahoma City
OR - Medford
OR - PortlandPA - Philadelphia
PA - Pittsburgh
SC - Charleston
TN - Memphis
TX - El Paso
TX - Fort Worth
TX - Houston
TX - San Antonio
UT - Salt Lake City
VA - Norfolk
WA - Seattle


A PAMA awning professional will be able to provide you with information about awnings and canopies that fit your lifestyle, home and budget.

In the U.S., enter your Zip Code here to find a Professional Awning Manufacturers Association
member in your area.



New Data Shows that Fabric Awnings & Exterior Shades
Can Help Homeowners Reduce Cooling Costs by
More than 50%

Sweeping 50-city study proves awnings are a smart retrofit to reduce home energy consumption

• Save money through reduced cooling bills
• Increase comfort by reducing home's internal temperature
• Potentially reduce size of and mechanical wear on the home AC unit

“People don’t realize that there are more eco-friendly ways to stay cool.” says Byron Yonce, MFC, chairman of PAMA. “While turning up the air conditioner results in higher energy bills, awnings and shades work with the air conditioner to keep your home cooler and reduce the need for additional energy.” 

High Temperatures, Rising Energy Costs & TIght Budgets Shine Light on Awning Benefits

Everyone knows that awnings provide shade for homes. But record hot temperatures this past summer, rising energy costs and tighter household budgets are bringing to light the tangible role awnings and solar shades can play in efforts to reduce energy expenses.

A new energy study funded by The Professional Awning Manufacturers Association (PAMA), shows that fabric awnings or exterior shades can save homeowners as much as $200 annually by reducing the load on air conditioners (depending on where a home is located). The study, released this week, calculates the impact of awnings in 50 cities across the United States.

“The significance of this type of energy savings extends beyond reduced home expenses,” said Joe Huang, president of White Box Technology, who conducted the study. “When numerous homeowners in a community reduce their energy use, there is less demand for energy during peak usage, resulting in overall savings to utility companies and the public.”

The study focused on older homes that are typically smaller and less insulated than newer construction. Resulting data supports awnings and solar shades as “smart” retrofits to help make older homes more energy efficient.

For example, the study showed that awnings on a home with single or double glazed windows in Pittsburgh, PA can reduce cooling energy 46-50% in a hot year compared to the same house without awnings. Correlating cost savings can range from $81 to $102. In a hot city like Phoenix, AZ the net savings was $193 in a typical year.

“The sun’s rays through glass are responsible for almost 20% of the load on your air conditioner," says Michelle Sahlin, Managing Director of PAMA. "Awnings reduce direct solar gain through windows."

The study incorporated information about weather and energy costs, and included a number of variations (cities, shade designs and fabrics). The amount of cooling energy saved varies depending on the number of windows, type of glass in the windows, window orientation and regional climate.

“Homeowners often ask how well awnings and roller screens will help to cool their home and make them more comfortable. So PAMA initiated this study to develop credible information about the performance of window shading, as we work to educate home owners and the industry," says John Gant, PAMA’ s Energy Committee Chairman. "This research uses complex computer simulations for a wide range of variables to generate predictions of the energy conservation.”

The study in its entirety is now available.





Improve your home's energy efficiency
Dept. of Energy Web Site ( focuses on improving energy efficiency for homes and the use of awnings as part of that solution. Click here.

High-tech controls optimize awning benefits
Managing the use of sun and shade can have a significant impact on home's energy efficiency.
For more information, click here.

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