Blog / Motorized Shades and Home Automation

Motorized Shades and Home Automation

Motorized shades are a great addition to your home automation system.
Motorized shades are a great addition to your home automation system.

Are you looking to bring a functional and cosmetic enhancement to your home? Then it may be time to consider adding motorized shades to your home.

Functionally, motorized shades provide protection from the sun’s glare and privacy from onlookers. They can also reduce heat gain from sunlight coming through your windows. Do you have high windows that are too hard to reach for operating shades manually? Motorized shades are a convenient solution to this problem. All of these benefits are available at the push of a button or through an app and can be part of automated scenes that raise or lower groups of shades simultaneously. These scenes can also be triggered by a scheduler or tied to an astronomic clock to respond to year-round changes in sunset and sunrise based on your zip code.

Motorized shades come in a large variety of beautiful fabrics, colors, and patterns that will complement any décor. There are woven fabrics with rich textures and bold colors, sheer fabrics with smooth textures and muted colors, and everything in between. You can choose from an array of shade materials that let natural light filter through them with varying degrees of transparency, from minimal light filtering to full blackout shades. It’s also possible to have a light filtering shade and a blackout shade together on a double roller that cycles through each fabric sequentially.

Shades can be mounted within the frame of a window (inside mount) or on the surface of the wall surrounding the window (outside mount).

An inside mounted shade is less intrusive since the roller enclosure and shade are contained within the window frame. This method puts the shade material very close to the window. Even with a perfectly squared window frame there will be some light leakage from the sides of the shade, due to a minimum 1/8” gap between the edge of the shade and the window frame. This can be eliminated by using a track on the sides of the window frame that envelops the edges of the shade. Tracks are most often used with blackout shades where light leakage would be a detriment to the purpose of using a blackout material.

With outside mounting, an enclosure (which contains the roller and motor) is mounted on the surface of the wall above the window, and the shade drops down along the surface of the wall rather than the surface of the window. This eliminates the need for tight window frame tolerances since the shade overlaps the edges of the window frame. Another advantage of this design is that multiple adjacent windows can be covered by a single wide shade if individual shades are not required, whereas inside mounting would require a separate motor and roller for each window, increasing the cost.

Motorized shades require electrical power. This can be provided by wiring from a power source to the window, or by batteries contained within the roller enclosure. For very large windows with heavy fabrics, a wired shade may be the only solution due to the power required to lift the shade, though battery power is adequate for most situations. The batteries need to be recharged periodically, approximately once every 18 months, depending on usage.

Motorized shades are a custom product requiring expertise in design, attention to detail, and installation skill. Windows must be measured, application details discussed, fabrics selected, and products accurately installed. HomeRun Electronics has completed many successful motorized shade projects, and offers window coverings from Hunter Douglas, Crestron, and Screen Innovations. Our designers can also work with you to have these added to home automation systems from Crestron, Control4, or Clare for simple, integrated control.

Contact us today to discuss your project and see how motorized shades can add functionality, convenience, and beauty to your home.

Sheina Schaefer-Eder

Manager, Production Electrical Operations

Sheina is a Colorado native and joined HomeRun Electronics in 2017. She started ine the electrical department with invoicing and worked up to managing the Production Electrical Team. She is married with 6 children and 3 grandchildren. In her off time, she enjoys yard work, camping, and spending time with her dogs.

Lela-Rose Thom

Manager, Customer Care

Lela started her career in the home services/builder industry in 2013 and joined HomeRun Electronics in August of 2022. She has a wealth of knowledge within the industry and interpersonal skills. Lela’s husband is a military dog handler, they have two amazing children, and a love for animals. In her time off she can be found in her garden rocking out to Stevie Nicks.