One of the most crucial characteristics of a solar screen you should consider is its openness factor. The openness factor is a percentage that reflects the tightness of the fabric’s weave, impacting the amount of light that passes through, temperature and overall visibility.
Most screens are created from tightly woven PVC-coated polyester. A closer weave will block more sunlight, while a looser weave will increase the amount of light and improve visibility.
Shades come in a variety of openness percentages from 1% to 14%, with the most common being around 3% to 5%.
Which Openness Factor Is Right for You?
When choosing an openness factor, there is no right or wrong answer. A percentage that works in one scenario may not be right for all situations, so you should consider the following ideas:
While the weave’s tightness impacts the view of onlookers, solar screens don’t necessarily provide privacy. Your visibility of the outside world reflects how much others can see of your outdoor living space at night.
There are generally three types of openness factors, which include:
Low openness describes solar screens with an openness factor of 0% to 4%. Essentially, a screen with a rating of 1% will block 99% of the natural light that shines through. These options are excellent choices if you want to reduce heat and use outdoor cooling systems less often while protecting your belongings from UV rays.
Typically, a rating of 5% to 10% is the perfect middle-of-the-road option if you want to balance the benefits of high and low openness factors. These solar screens offer a suitable view of the outdoors while lowering temperatures and providing adequate sun control.
High percentages usually range from 10% to 14%, although they can sometimes extend higher. If a view of the outdoors and the presence of natural light are at the top of your wishlist, a higher rating may be more suited to your needs. These designs significantly reduce glare but may increase temperature fluctuations, causing your outdoor cooling system to work harder.
Shading Texas Is Ready to Help
Shading Texas is the leading provider and installer of patio shades and screens in Central Texas. We use decades of experience to provide high-quality results in no time at all. You can contact our experts online to learn more and ask for your free quote.
Matt Pierce has been working in the solar shade industry for over 15 years, providing sun protection in the extremes of Alaska and Texas. His dedicated team at Shading Texas will get your the sun solutions you need to enjoy your patios and homes for years to come by blocking out bugs, sun, wind, and rain!