Fabric Types - What’s the Difference?

For those of you who find yourselves stumped by the variety of fabric types available for you to choose from, know this – typically, with greater protection comes greater opacity (and less view).

Those staying in condominiums or managed estates would have guidelines determining the selection of colours that are permitted. But even then, you’d have a range of fabric options to select from with Ziptrak® blinds. Let’s begin with your concerns:

Sun Shade

Standard 1% fabrics keep out approximately 99% of UV transmission. In general, the darker fabric absorbs more light and is better at keeping out UV rays and glare (and is easier to maintain!), but lighter fabric offers better heat protection as it reflects and reduces heat absorption.

Keeping the Rain Out

If you’re on a high floor with great views (lucky you!), you may be exposed to strong winds and rain. With the standard PolyWeave 1% or FiberWeave 1%, you may experience rain being forced through the fabric by strong winds. This typically creates a misting effect, and a floor perimeter of 60cm next to the affected blind is likely to be wet.

If that’s not acceptable, opt for the RainOut® fabric series, which will offer a much better result, while retaining the same look from the exterior. From the inside, owners who opt for this series can choose either a frosted or blackout effect, depending on the fabric they’ve selected.

Some owners may even prefer the ClearView (PVC) option, which retains the view. Do note that the ClearView (PVC) option is only recommended for manual Ziptrak® SuperSpring blinds.

Keeping the Air-Conditioning In

Retaining air-conditioning works pretty much the same way as keeping the rain out. Non-porous options retain air-conditioning better.


During the day, when it’s typically brighter outside the home than it is inside, most fabrics will offer privacy. In selecting your preferred fabric, consider how important it is to retain this privacy at night. More porous fabrics will offer less privacy at night. 

If you spend a lot of time on the balcony and privacy is important for you, opt for the RainOut® series.

Retaining the View

When it comes to retaining the view (looking out), the more porous your fabric is, the better the view. In general, darker fabrics offer a better view as well.

If retaining your view is important to you, opt for the more porous fabric that would give you the protection you want. The alternative, if it is available to you, would be the ClearView PVC option. The PVC option offered with Ziptrak® blinds is of a special marine-grade that has been treated to react better to the sun and rain. However, this will be harder to maintain than the fabric options.

In Summary

With an excellent system like Ziptrak® offering superb weather protection, the fabric becomes the determining factor in creating the outcome that you desire. Whether you live in a condominium where fabric colours have been pre-determined by your MCST, or on a private estate where you get to make those decisions yourself, our highly experienced site consultants are here to assist you.

Book an appointment with one of our consultants for a free on-site consultation here.