I am a sucker for open windows. My room has two windows on opposing sides, and I get an amazing flow of air between them most hours of the day and night, and I want to keep it that way.

A problem with open windows is uncontrolled lighting. If I wish to open my windows during the day even if the flow of air is nice, I often get too much light on my screens and can't really work on my computer or watch TV.

Is there a way to darken the room, hopefully by putting something on the window, which would filter light, but not restrict the flow of air in the room?

I've been considering about painting the walls with a darker color, but for now that option is not viable because of reasons.


4 Answers 4


The only logical that comes to my mind is an awning of some sort. If you get a big enough one, most direct light will be lost and you should have the same amount of airflow.


Any solution will be a compromise. The more light you block, the more air you will also block. You want something opaque and dark and non-reflective and adjustable. Some sort of slat blinds is a common solution, but if you have room to install a device away from the window, some other creative opportunities exist to block direct light but allow airflow around or through the blocking material. As an extreme example, a partial room divider could work. Or perhaps some sort of tension structure.

The room will not be dark, but by blocking out direct sunlight while leaving openings for air flow, you will be able to see your screens and still get some air flow, though much reduced from wide open windows. Be glad for the cross flow situation that will enhance flow through the openings that remain.


If you have ability to hang items outside the windows, there are companies that make blinds for the outside of the windows that say that they block light but leave your view and airflow intact.

I have not seen how well they work as I am a renter and not allowed to put items on the outside of the properties we will in.

Using your preferred search engine, something like the following should give you some results for the products I am talking about:

exterior shades air flow


I know this is an old question but my solution to this problem was to call up a tinting company.

They had many different window tints available

Most are for privacy. All of them reflect or absorb light.

I also found that you can buy diy tints. It wasn't too difficult to apply it. Basically water and a squeegee.

  • And how doesn't that impact airflow? Jan 30, 2020 at 19:20
  • @UnhandledExcepSean - it attaches to the glass. It doesn't impact on the opening and closing of the window and will therefore not impede airflow at all.
    – hookenz
    Jan 30, 2020 at 19:56
  • Yeah, but having the window closed so the tint is blocking light means there will be no airflow. By the way, aluminum foil works better for 100% blacking out a window. Jan 30, 2020 at 19:59
  • @UnhandledExcepSean - The op never said what kind of windows he has. He did not say whether they were sash windows. I've assumed it's some kind of awning or casement window which opens with a hinge rather than a sliding sash window. I don't think Op wants to completely block light. Just reduce the glare. Tints work well for this. They also do this to commercial high rise buildings. The windows are tinted to reduce heat and glare.
    – hookenz
    Jan 30, 2020 at 20:17

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