Controlling heat #2 – Outdoors

Here in Australia we can be susceptible to harsh weather conditions, from long hot dry summers to periods of high winds, Australian conditions can be unforgiving. The way these conditions have been minimised in the home often involve fans and air conditioning, however this will only lead to increased energy costs.

Luckily there’s another way to effectively control the temperature in our homes, and that’s through the installation of external shading solutions. There are a great variety of options available, each providing different levels of protection and being suited to particular applications.

Here at Rolletna we’re committed to providing our customers with high quality effective shading solutions that are both functional and aesthetic. We’ve composed this blog to go through more detail about the products available, and how they can be effectively used to regulate the temperatures in our homes.

In the following sections we’ll go through a variety of external products available. These come in varying designs, materials and colours and can be further customised to suit a particular need. For regulating temperature, it’s important to note the role colour and ventilation plays.

Generally white or light colours will actually transmit heat through onto windows causing them to heat up. As such for external shading solutions dark colours should be considered to control heat. Further in order for them to achieve their intended purpose, during installation it’s important to allow ventilation to occur around these shading solutions.

External Roller Blinds

External roller blinds are a versatile and architecturally appealing way to stop heat and glare before it reaches into an interior living space. These types of blinds come in either a wire guided or side channel solution, and can be operated  manually with a removable crank handle or automated. To deal with high winds they can be fitted with a fabric tensioning system that helps ensure the fabric deflects the wind.

External roller blinds repel up to 90% of the sun’s heat whilst also reflecting and absorbing harmful UV radiation and are designed to control the entry of natural light. They increase the thermal comfort of the internal space with impressive heat gain reductions and increase visual

comfort by reducing glare while maintaining views from the inside.

External Shutters

External shutters offer a stylish look and are known for providing protection to windows in severe weather conditions. They have the added benefit of providing climate control by blocking the heat or cold before it is able to enter the home.

External shutters can be fitted and operated as a sliding system, bi-fold system or hinged system, and are generally made from timber and aluminium. Further details on the amazing protection these two types of shutters provide can be found right here.

One of the best benefits shutters can bring to any home is added energy efficiency.  Shutters provide excellent insulation, which helps to cut down on heat transfer and reduces the need to heat and cool your home.

Clear Cafe Blind

Cafe blinds are blinds that border a patio or alfresco space, and are the perfect solution for creating an enclosed all-weather outdoor sitting area all year round.

Using a clear PVC plastic, a cafe blind will keep you warm in winter and block the wind whilst maintaining your view. It can be motorised or operated manually by hand or by using a crank handle.

A cafe blind has been designed to be functional and practical. It has a ZipTrak system that can be easily operated and has a wind locking feature. Welded into the sides of the clear panel is a small tube, which you can’t see because it slides into an aluminium channel. This system helps to improve operation under wind loads and ensures there are no ugly side gaps that are seen with some wire guided systems.

You can see how great an outdoor living space can be created with a clear cafe blind right here.

External Roller Shutters

External roller shutters offer a range of benefits covering weather protection, security, insulation and noise reduction. They are made from extruded aluminium with a polystyrene core, and offer a practical way to regulate the temperature in your home.

External roller shutters provide an added barrier between the outside of your home and the inside, stopping air that would otherwise pass through freely. They work throughout the year, by 

trapping hot air when you want it during the winter months, but allowing for vital circulation in summer. By stabilising the temperature in your home, external roller shutters will ultimately help you save on your energy bills. An added bonus is that they also improve the security of your home when closed.

Folding Arm Awnings

Folding Arm Awnings are retractable awnings that extend and retract with spring loaded arms that keep the fabric tight. When not in use, the awning neatly retracts into a cassetted hood so that any mechanisms are not visible.

Since they dont require posts or a framework, they are a cost-effective alternative to permanent structures and a great way to create an outdoor entertaining area on those warm, sunny days.

This type of awning provides excellent shade coverage and features dyed acrylic fabric offering optimum UV and sun protection. They can be either manually operated or motorised, and can even be fitted with automatic weather sensors for greater levels of control.

The world leading brand of folding arm awnings is Markilux. This European made shading solution is renowned for its industry leading innovation and premium quality.

Here at Rolletna we have been a Markilux reseller and installer for over 15 years. You can see some examples of this truly amazing product in our Markilux Projects Gallery right here.

Conservatory Awnings

Conservatory awnings are a highly versatile type of awning. They are mounted above fixed structures to stop sun and heat before they reach the interior of your home. 

They’re ideal for creating shade over pergolas and offer excellent protection from hot sunny days, reducing heat and glare. Their design even enables the awning to turn corners of up to 90 degrees if required.

This type of awning runs on tracks and the fabric retracts onto a roller tube into an aluminium cassette. The fabric is protected when it is retracted in the cassette.

External Venetians

External Venetians offer a superior shading solution providing optimal heat protection and unsurpassed light control. They feature slats that let in natural sunlight whilst minimising uncomfortable hothouse effects and eliminating blinding glare.

The great thing with the external venetians is the flexibility they provide. The slats can be set to any position by raising, lowering and tilting to allow the room temperature and light level to be matched to the desired user requirements. Additionally when fully retracted external venetians provide a completely unobstructed view.

Venetian blinds can be further customised to be motorised providing that extra level of convenience and security when you’re not at home. Further details on the many benefits of motorised external venetian blinds can be found right here.

Festoons and Hoods

Festoons can be either an external or internal shading solution that is like a horizontal roman blind.  Using external grade fabric with parallel pleats, a festoon is able to be extended and retracted along a guide wire.

A hood on the other hand is a smaller shading solution that is typically used over a door or window, and has fabric fixed to either a curved or triangular shaped frame. It is typically seen as a European window feature and makes an elegant addition to your home.

Both of these roofing solutions provide great shade cover and rain protection. A hood will offer a more permanent fixed structure over a small space, while the festoon provides greater coverage and offers the option of being able to be retracted when not in use.

Australian weather conditions can be unrelenting. During periods of extreme weather, such as  long hot dry summers, it can be quite hard to reduce the amount of glare and heat that becomes trapped in our homes, creating overall unpleasant conditions.

Luckily the installation of an external shading solution provides an effective way to regulate the temperature in our homes. There’s a variety of options available from roller blinds and shutters, to awnings and venetians that offer different levels of protection and useability. When deciding which might be an appropriate fit to your home make sure you research what type of glare / heat protection each provides and the type of functionality it offers. By selecting an appropriate shading solution for your home, it’s possible to optimize your home’s temperature and thus cool and reduce energy use efficiency.

We hope this blog has been informative and provided you with more details about each shading solution. Should you have any further questions don’t hesitate to contact the experts here at Rolletna. We’ll work with you to understand your home’s unique requirements and then help you to find the right exterior product for your home.

For any of your external shading solution needs, why not contact us today.