GBA Logo horizontal Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Picture icon Hamburger Icon Close Icon Sorted

Community and Q&A

Motorized exterior solar shading

tdbaugha | Posted in General Questions on

Does anyone have experience or recommendations for exterior solar control shades? Brands, products, install/design techniques, etc  


I’ve been planning to use exterior solar shades with a zipper track but I’ve recently become nervous of long term durability of the zippers and the shades flopping around in the wind and being noisy.

I saw a new system on Instagram that uses magnets instead of zippers but during the demonstration of its wind resistance, it bangs around even more than a zipper system. 

Are there no manufacturers of European style products like roller shades or Venetian blinds?

More context: climate zone 6, house faces west w/ large windows (no it’s not an option to reduce window sizes and orientation), and the solution will be integrated into the facade as much as possible.  There is also a large covered patio on the west side which will also utilize motorized solar shading at the edge of the patio to make it more pleasant while sitting outside in the afternoon sun. 

Any help is much appreciated. Thanks!

GBA Prime

Join the leading community of building science experts

Become a GBA Prime member and get instant access to the latest developments in green building, research, and reports from the field.


  1. Expert Member


    Would permanent Brise Soleil block too much light?

    1. tdbaugha | | #2

      Hi Malcom,

      Yes that would. I’ve seen drawings of motorized aluminum Venetian blinds from Europe that would be similar but I could retract them when not needed/wanted. I have not been able to find a way to purchase those yet.

      The lot faces the water, hence wanting a clear view most of the time. I have 18’ overhangs which will provide the bulk of the shading. But in the august - October months from ~5pm to 9pm the sun has a direct path into the house and the glare will be terrible.

      I have a similar house right now and we opted for interior blinds since it was a remodel. I like the solar screen idea because it provides some glare control, heat control, and you can see through them.

  2. tdbaugha | | #3

    Aluprof External Venetian Blinds:

    Aluprof External Solar Shades:


    From what I gather these solutions are fairly common in Europe and from what I can tell, basically non existent in the USA

    1. Expert Member
      Akos | | #4

      "From what I gather these solutions are fairly common in Europe and from what I can tell, basically non existent in the USA"

      That is the same conclusion I came to when looking into it many years ago. It is a shame as they are very common and work quite well on the other side of the pond. An office I worked at had them, they would come down and automatically adjust during the day as needed.

      In the end I gave up and went with overhangs. Simple, minimal extra cost, nothing to adjust and no moving parts.

      I have used the adjustable fence louver hardware before for shading on porch. I could see mounting a lager panel of these onto a bran track slider on the outside as window shades. Won't be motorized but pretty easy to adjust.

      There are also a number of adjustable aluminum pergola kits out there that could be repurposed.

  3. mgensler | | #5

    Sunsetter makes a nice roller shade for the exterior. It works with remote control or through zwave automation. We have three of them and so far have only had issue with one battery failing. Sunsetter replaced it free of charge.

Log in or create an account to post an answer.


Recent Questions and Replies

  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |