Consider your climate for external blinds
When thinking about shading, your location on the map and your region’s climate must be considered. In temperate climates the magic direction to start with is north. The north side of a home has the most solar energy available and it is the easiest to control. All you need is the right width eave or other horizontal shading to stop the sun in summer and let it inside in winter.
For east and west windows, a different shading solution is needed as the sun is lower in the sky. Adjustable vertically-placed blinds, screens or louvres work best to control sun for the short time it’s needed, and then open up again to daylight, views and breezes.
In hotter climates – roughly north of Brisbane – shading is important all year round, including on the south side of your home. In colder parts of the country, winter heat gain is the priority so it’s vital to ensure any shading doesn’t impede solar access in winter.
Local site topography also plays a part in deciding the amount of shading needed, for example, a south sloping site may need slightly less shading for a longer period of the year. For more information, see Your Home’s ‘Shading’ fact sheet.
Fashionline’s Top Tips for External Shading
- Remember that there are plenty of choices for effective shading, from cost-effective and easily retrofitted blinds to custom-designed automated systems. External blinds, shutters and screens can also provide security while inner doors and windows are open for ventilation.
- Fixed awnings for windows are cost effective and allow you to keep the windows open when it’s raining. However, they allow for less active sun control and flexibility than adjustable versions.
- For western and eastern facades where the sun is intense at a low angle for a short time you can try retractable fabric awnings. Other adjustable shading options include blinds, louvres, sliding screens and roller shutters. Louvres, shutters and even pergolas with adjustable angled blades allow sun control while admitting breezes.
- If the budget stretches, pergolas with motorised blinds or complete louvre roof systems may fit the bill. Such systems can help create the effect of an outdoor room and allow your home’s internal spaces to feel larger.
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The Fashionline Team