The Australian climate is harsh and unforgiving, particularly during the summer months.
All Australians are taught the importance of slip, slop, slap from a young age to protect themselves from the sun.
What we don’t learn is that our homes require sun protection as well.
Designing a home with adequate shading has many cost-saving and environmental benefits.
Direct sunlight generates heat, which is great during winter, but far less desirable in summer. Using effective shading can block up to 90% of this heat, thus reducing the need for air-conditioning and saving money on the power bills.
There are many shade solutions that can add to a home’s visual appeal and increase its market value. Houses have different requirements depending on factors such as the climate and the orientation of the home. It is important to consult an expert in addition to conducting your own research. If you’re uncertain as to what kinds of shading would work best for your home, seek advice before locking anything in.
For a permanent shading solution, durable fixed awnings such as carbolite or canopy awnings are an excellent choice. They are designed to endure the harshest conditions and are built to last. A fixed awning provides generous amounts of shade without obscuring the view outside.
Larger awnings can also add extra space to your home by functioning as an extra room. The awning is a sturdy shelter from the weather which still allows fresh air to flow through. Fixed awnings are a great option for families with young children or pets, as it provides them with a protected place to play outside all year around.
However, fixed awnings aren’t suitable for all homes – they’re fantastic at blocking out the sun, but come wintertime
it can become a disadvantage. In cooler climates, retractable awnings are just as effective at shading the summer sun, but can be tucked away in winter when sunlight is elusive.
The appeal of a retractable awning lays in the degree of control it gives you. It can be extended as needed to keep the heat out but let light in, and adjusted accordingly as the sun moves overhead. Retractable awnings are an incredibly flexible option which can be customised to suit homes in any climate.
When selecting the style of awning, it’s important to consider which direction the sunlight enters your home from, as well as the angle.
During summer, the sun tends to stay higher in the sky than it does in winter. This means that, with clever design, you can add an appropriately sized fixed awning which blocks out the worst of the summer heat but still allows winter sunlight into your home.
For less predictable or cooler climates where absorbing winter sun is a higher priority, retractable awnings can provide sufficient shade during the day as required.
There are many ways to achieve a cooler home before you switch on the A/C. Providing your home with plenty of shade is a great way to cut costs on power bills and make your home more sustainable.