The sunroof effect – cover when you need it

A retractable sunroof is one of the more logical approaches to the ferocious Australian sun. These very useful outdoor sun shades provide cover at a moment’s notice. Good sunroofs are tough, wind-resistant, and very reliable. These sunroofs are now standard features in modern homes, particularly for outdoor living zones around the house and on balconies. They’ve also evolved considerably as design features, and are a common feature of outdoor restaurant areas.

Sunroofs basics

Sunroofs are designed to provide living space quality outdoors. They’re commonly used on balconies, patios, and other outdoor living areas where sunlight exposure can be too strong, or is variable and requires management. In Australia, they also need to deal with a range of weather conditions, and double as a cover for outdoor areas in all seasons.

The original sunroofs were a basic type of outdoor roofing. They weren’t adjustable, however, and evolved over time, adopting new materials and a retractable function to deal with seasonal factors. Modern sunroofs are big, some extending as much as six metres, and can be up to eight metres wide. That’s a lot of space, and in summer these roofs are invaluable, providing a good heat blocking service on external areas of buildings.

Sunroofs as problem solvers

Sunroofs are at their best as problem solvers. Light and heat issues can be real problems, particularly in apartment blocks and for buildings with facings which receive far too much sun for hours at a time in summer. At 40 degrees plus, that’s no joke. This type of light and heat entering the building can cause multiple problems. Sunroofs eliminate the direct hits from light and heat, and reduce the strain on air conditioning.

If you’ve ever lived in an east-west facing building, or worked in a building with those facings, you’ll know the problem. The incoming heat can be incredible, and it can last for hours at a stretch, and it does cause the exposed areas to heat up. In big buildings, it can even be too much for the air conditioning in modern buildings. This is exactly the sort of area where sunroofs are most effective.

Glare, another serious problem, can also be fixed. Many buildings suffer from long periods of glare, particularly those in exposed positions on higher ground or with facings which are affected by both morning and afternoon sun. The sunroofs create a barrier to this glare, and prevent it entering the building.

Picking and choosing your sunroof

Sunroofs are very adaptable to any situation, and the modern retractable types are perfect for apartments and domestic uses. They’re also good for outdoor dining areas, and do have a wide range of commercial applications, particularly for restaurants and cafés.

It’s worth contacting a supplier and investigating your options before making a decision. The best suppliers are experts, and can help you through your light and heat problems systematically. You can deal with all your screening issues , like interior and exterior blinds, with a “one stop shop” approach, as well as getting your sunroof. Check out your options online, and ask for a consultation.