Solar shades are very popular in Florida – with good reason! They block sunlight and UV rays from coming inside your home or business while still allowing you to view out. These versions of roller shades are mounted inside the home or business to effectively reduce glare and heat gain, and provide daytime privacy. They are not the same thing as outdoor shades or sun shades, which are often made of a thicker canvas-like material and are mounted outside the home.
How Do Solar Shades Work?
Solar shades look like any other type of light-filtering shade, available in hundreds of different fabrics and colors, but they function a bit differently. The difference is in the material. Solar shade materials reflect and/or absorb heat instead of allowing it to pass through into the room. This has the effect of keeping rooms cooler and reducing energy costs while still allowing light to pass through. They’re effective in residential and business settings, particularly if you do a lot of work near windows and are bothered by glare or heat transfer. The motorized operation makes it easy to raise and lower the shades throughout the day, as needed.
Solar Shades Block The Sun, Not The View
One of the things customers love most about solar shades is that unlike thermal or blackout shades, you can still see outside and you still get some natural light exposure. The flip side of this is that people outside the building can see inside, but only at night. That is something to be aware of as you consider solar shades for your windows.
Shopping For Solar Shades
When shopping for solar shades, you’ll want to consider the orientation of your windows, your performance needs, and weave density.
- Window Orientation. What direction do your windows face? South and west facing windows receive hotter, more direct sun. You may want a more reflective or heat absorbing fabric on these windows than on east or north facing windows.
- Performance. The type of fabric you choose determines the performance of the shade. Some materials can reduce heat gain better than others. Others are better at allowing filtered light through. Still, other materials are better for reducing glare. Decide which features are most important to you and use that to guide your fabric choices.
- Weave Density. The weave density or “openness factor” indicates the amount of open/closed space in the material. Fabric with a low openness factor (OF) is more densely woven, providing more reflective benefits, and letting less light through. A high OF rating lets in more light, but won’t provide as much filtering or heat reflecting functions.
If solar shades are something you think would work well for your windows, contact Orlando Motorized Shades to explore our solar shade selection and get a quote.
Call (407) 977-0886 to arrange a free on-site consultation for your home or business.