External Blinds Buyers Guide
External Blinds are designed to cover the outside surface of windows, or to be fitted to the outside edge of a balcony or deck. They offer a discreet and retractable shade solution for glazing and outdoor areas that are exposed to high levels of heat and glare from the sun.
Where Can External Blinds be Used?
For Rooms in Your Home with Great Views
If you want all the benefits of heat and light control but don’t want to sacrifice your stunning view, External Screen Blinds are the solution. Maintaining a sense of connection to the outside world is so important, especially with so many of us working from home.
Outdoor screen fabrics have varying levels of openness that allow different levels of see-through. From a fabric weave that is 1% open (less see through), up to a weave that is 14% open, there is an option to suit all requirements.
Helpful tip: the darker the fabric colour, the better the view-through. It’s like putting a pair of sunnies on your windows!
UV protection for your furnishings
Part of the make-up of all solar energy is Ultraviolet light that although not visible to us, can cause permanent fading or discolouration to your floors, furniture, and soft furnishings. External Blinds offer a high level of protection from this harmful UV radiation.
Style & Street Appeal
External blinds not only offer their unique functionality but also add to the style and street presence of the home. Being one of the most visible elements on balconies or external walls, it is important to consider how they will integrate visually with existing paint colours, gutters, and roofing.
Although it may seem counter-intuitive, often choosing a complimentary accent colour for the hardware of your outdoor blinds gives the best effect. For example: a large front façade that is Dark Grey in colour may be beautifully highlighted by choosing a pale whitish hue like Dulux® Surfmist® for the blind Headbox and guide channels.
What Types of External Blinds Are There?
Outdoor blinds come in many variations that include:
- With or without a Headbox.
- Guided at the sides by stainless steel cables, or aluminium channels. Or the fabric can be held in place at the sides with what are known as “ZIP” channels.
- Pivot arm blinds (sometimes referred to as window awnings) are also a popular option. To ensure a long life for blinds that are not installed under an eave or in a recess, a Headbox System is recommended to protect the motor/control mechanisms and the fabric when it is rolled up.
Headboxes come in different sizes to suit the size of the blind and look of the home. It is also especially important to ensure that all metal components are either aluminium or highest-grade stainless steel, as they will be exposed to the rain. Rust is your enemy!
How External ZIP blinds Work
Newest External Blind Trends & Designs
In recent years we have noticed a big trend towards the HMX-ZIP series of External Zip blinds.
European Engineered in Austria and manufactured here in Australia, HMX-ZIP blinds are the highest quality available in the market.
They feature a clever way that the fabric is held securely in the guide channels using a Zip/Spring Clip system. This combined with the SERGE range of fibre-glass core external mesh fabrics, makes for the best possible presentation.
Factors To Consider When buying External Blinds
Retractable or Motorised?
The most versatile shading products are always fully retractable.
The most versatile shading products are always fully retractable. This ensures that the warmth of the sun can enter your courtyard, deck or living area in the cooler months whilst providing much needed heat, glare, and solar protection in the height of summer. This flexibility can be enhanced further by automating the control of your outdoor blinds with sun, wind, or rain sensors. This creates a truly dynamic level of sun control that responds to the weather in real time. Eg: External blinds can be lowered automatically on the western façade of your home when the sun moves into a position that would normally create high levels of heat and glare in your living space.
Any premium external blind supplier will offer a full range of internal and external sun control products that are motorised, indeed the benefits of motorisation have seen its popularity only increase over the years.
Not only is it the ultimate in convenience being able to simply touch a button to control your awnings or blinds, but automation can markedly increase the energy efficiency of your home.
For example, you may want to set a timer on your blinds to be lowered when you leave for work, and to raise again just before you arrive home. Motorised products can also be integrated into existing Smart Home Management systems, allowing instant control from anywhere in the world! The options are literally endless!
Exterior shading with SERGE sunscreen fabric is by far the most efficient way of achieving thermal comfort, giving up to 20% more solar protection that an interior sunscreen blind. This would translate into a noticeably lower ambient temperate inside the home.
Woven in Belgium, the SERGE Sunscreen range that Helioscreen use on outdoor blinds is eco-friendly and complies with the Oëko-Tex-100 standard. This means there are no harmful substances present nor heavy-metal content (lead, cadmium, tin). No formaldehyde and allergenic compounds are used, and the yarns are resistant to mould and bacterial growth. The fabric also complies to the latest REACH- standards prescribed by the EU (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation, and restriction of CHemicals).
Choosing the Right Supplier
As with any major home or lifestyle improvement purchase, there are a vast array of options on the market. But the old adage rings true: “You get what you pay for”. Cheaper options are always available, but choosing a high quality product first, often saves you money in the long run. External Blinds are considered a long term investment that should operate fault free for many years. A premium supplier offers longer warranty periods for peace of mind. The best manufacturers are also able to provide custom solutions when a tricky or unique installation situations arise.
The Helioscreen Difference:
With over 30 years of experience in manufacturing the best quality outdoor awning and blinds, Helioscreen has a reputation for supplying a complete and un-compromising suite of outdoor shade systems, each carefully tailor made to user requirements in our factory on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. Our factory is equipped with the latest cutting and welding technology, so that all products are made with absolute precision and attention to detail. With goods being dispatched daily to our nationwide dealer network, we pride ourselves in being able to meet the highest demands of modern design and architecture.