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Part of a good consultation is helping the customer decide which type of lifting mechanism to use on their roller shades. This week, when working with a commercial customer in their business, I had a good example of this to share. The client had a large conference room and an individual office to cover with screen roller shades. For the conference room, the customer was happy with the option of a manually operated clutch. We did upgrade the lifting system to a lift assist system which lightens the force needed to lift large shades.

Screen Shade

Screen Shade

But, in his personal office, he wanted to use a Somfy motor system. I thought about it for a while, and mentioned to him that a motor might not be the best option for that window. Here is why. I first asked him whether he would be opening and closing his roller shades regularly. I anticipated that he would leave his shades down almost all the time. He confirmed my suspicions. Therefore, I told him that he should consider NOT using a motor for his shades. It was strictly a financial consideration. Commercial level roller shade motors are not cheap. You are going to spend a pretty penny. The costs vary, but you can expect to pay somewhere between $500 and $1000 extra per shade to motorize, so if you don’t plan on using them regularly, what would the point be? This client’s issue is simply a matter of having to lean a little bit to reach the lift cordloop. Not such a big deal if he uses them once or twice a month. In the end, they may choose the motorized roller shade option anyway because of the coolness factor, but I feel like I gave them a good consultation on which choice would be best for them. I actually hope they do the motorized shades, because they are completely awesome!

This video shows a motorized solar screen roller shade on a similar window to what this client wants. It is done in a residential rather than commercial application.

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