But it doesn’t exclude them, either. Some companies, such as Hunter Douglas, say certain coverings they make are eligible and back up their claims by issuing a manufacturer’s certification statement saying so. Some tax experts believe that because these coverings don’t provide insulation as their main purpose, the IRS will eventually strike down these certifications.

Do your energy-efficient window coverings qualify?

If a company provides a certification statement, you’re almost certainly OK — for now. Even if the IRS later denies the company’s claim, it’s unlikely you’ll lose your credit retroactively.

Window coverings that currently may qualify for the federal tax credit include:

  • Honeycomb shades
  • Plantation shutters
  • Draperies, especially those identified as “insulated drapes”
  • Window films with insulating properties

Avoid tax hassles later

  • Always insist on a manufacturer’s certification for energy-efficient window coverings you purchase. Ads and smiling handshakes just aren’t good enough.
  • Don’t assume that if one company is giving a manufacturer’s certification, a similar product from another company is also covered.
  • If the IRS forces a company to withdraw a product’s certification and you buy it after the cancellation, you can’t say, “You used to certify it, so I’m still covered.”

What to do with a certification statement

You won’t have to submit the certification statement with your tax return, but you’ll need it and a copy of the sales receipt for your records. Stash your statement with your important papers for the year, and file IRS Form 5695 with your tax return.