Being an Australian homeowner in a bushfire prone area means that every summer is a stressful time. When the mercury nudges up towards 40 degrees and a hot Northerly wind starts to blow, everyone starts to worry about our friends in the bush.
While most of us associate bushfires with horrible images of walls of flame marching through paddocks and bushland, it's actually flying embers that cause the most damage to homes. All it takes is one ember for a house to be burnt to the ground.
Protecting Vulnerable Points
Windows are a common entry point for flying embers. If an ember enters through the window, it can light the carpet, drapes and furniture and quickly create a fire that will spread throughout the entire home.
As the fire approaches, the intense heat can smash the glass, Once the glass is shattered, your home is entirely open to attack. Aluminium roller shutters with a BAL-40 rating offer extra protection and prevent your windows from bursting or cracking open. BAL-40 is the highest rating, so if you live in a bushfire prone area, you need this rating.
It's not bushfires that burn homes down, it's house fires started by embers that burn down homes. Protect the entry point, you protect your home.
Keeping Heat Out
The other danger to your home is heat radiation. If your house gets too hot, elements of the building can reach ignition point and simply catch on fire. Everything has an ignition point, and roller shutters help to insulate your home against heat and give your home more chance of staying intact.
Preventing Flame Contact
Of course, if flames start licking at your home, you're in trouble. Homes built in a bushfire prone area tend to be designed for protection against flame contact, which is why flying embers are the biggest danger.
Fire-resistant roller shutters add to that protection and mean that flames can’t come in contact with wooden window frames and other vulnerable areas.
Choosing The Right Shutter For Fire Protection
If you live in a fire-prone area, you absolutely need a BAL-40 rated aluminium shutter. Steel loses structural integrity at 600 degrees and fails at 1500. BAL-40 shutters won't fail unless they are in direct path of the flame zone, and if that happens, there really is nothing that can save your home.
You should also check that the roller shutter meets Australian Standards of fire resistance, which means compliance with Australian Bushfire Construction Standard AS3959-2009. These Standards have been drawn up to prevent tragedy, and they are an accurate guide into how well the shutter will perform if placed in a bushfire situation.
What About The Aesthetic Of My Home?
Roller shutters are an incredibly stylish addition to your home. That means you can arm yourself against a bushfire, without worrying about how your home will look from the outside. Your house won't look like a prison, in fact, the colour and design of modern options will actually make it look better.
Roller shutters give you the extra peace of mind you need in bushfire season. They're an instant means of buffering against embers, heat and flames and giving your home the best chance of survival in the event of a fire.
Living in the Australian bush means living with fire, roller shutters are part of an intelligent and effective defence against that reality.