Screen roller blinds are a beautiful addition to any window. They provide excellent views to the outside while providing privacy, and temperature and glare control. But while aesthetics are important when selecting blinds, Paul O’Brien from Blind Designs shares why it’s important to consider the features that affect their function, and how they control heat and glare. This is where the openness of the weave and the colour of the screen come in.

The percentage of openness in the weave

Screen roller blinds are available in a variety of different weaves that allow for different levels of openness. The most common weave is a 5% open weave. This has been found to be suitable for most windows and is a good starting point.

You may find that some of your windows may be exposed to the western setting sun or may simply require a higher performance due to the nature of the room or how you use it. In this instance it may be desirable to look at a 1% or 3% open weave that will provide more UV protection. The additional protection comes with the trade-off of the view to the outside being more diffused.

Alternatively, you may have a south-facing window that requires little sun protection, and want to maximise your view. In this instance you would select a 10% or even a 20% open fabric.

It would be considered good practice to mix your weaves on the same project. Many of the popular colours are available in 3%, 5% and 10% open weaves, allowing you to select the correct weave to suit the performance required in your specific window.

Colour of the blind

Darker colours absorb more heat and can tend to make a room hotter, and lighter colours reflect more of the sun’s energy, making a room cooler. The colour of the blind also affects the clarity of your view. Darker colours offer a crisper, clearer view with minimal glare, while lighter colours in the same percentage open weave will provide a more diffused view to the outside.

It is sometimes difficult to tie in your aesthetics with the performance requirements of your blind. It is however good to keep in mind these characteristics of controlling heat.

A recent innovation is two-sided screen fabrics that are specially woven to be predominantly darker on the inside and lighter on the outside. These fabrics give you the best of both worlds, with maximum reflectance to the outside with a darker face to the inside to maximise your view and glare control.

These innovative screen fabrics are key in environments where you need maximum performance to create an all-day comfortable environment while minimising energy costs from air conditioning and artificial lighting.