Retractable Roofs vs. Opening Roofs — What are the Differences


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If you have a spacious yard you’ll want to make the most of it. Spending time in the fresh air doesn’t have to be limited to just nice weather. Now, with retractable and opening roofs, you can spend time outdoors for as long as you want without worrying about the elements. Opening roof systems and retractable roofs will allow you to have the perfect shelter and spend all the time outside that you need. On top of that, they’ll make your yard look beautiful and increase the net worth of your home. These on-trend outdoor roof solutions will easily enhance your outdoor space. All you need to do is decide on one of the two. If you’re not sure whether retractable roofs or opening roofs are the right choice for your space and budget, we’re here to offer some of the characteristics of both and make that decision much easier. We’ve listed the main differences and benefits of these two trending roofing options.

Different mechanisms

If you need a roofing system that retracts to open above a deck, then a retractable roof is the option for you. The retractable roof allows the louvres blades to retract back so you get to enjoy unobstructed views of the skies. With retractable roofs, you will get the option to control outdoor space. Opening roofs, on the other hand, stay in one place, while still allowing you to have unobstructed views of the skies. Unlike retractable roofs, opening systems have blades which rotate in order to offer you a view of the skies. You can close them quickly in case of bad weather, without spending precious seconds in the rain. When you want more sunlight and airflow inside the rest of your home, while still keeping the sun and rain out, opening roof systems will be your go-to option.

Open roof installed with led lights.

Installation and maintenance costs

Installing a retractable roof is more affordable than installing an opening roof system. Retractable roofs can be very unreliable and their maintenance will cost more than the installation of an opening roof. Unlike opening roofs, retractable ones are primarily made from fabric, which makes them more affordable but also more prone to malfunction. As this fabric is subjected to harsh weather conditions, you will need to replace it every 3 to 5 years. Keep those replacement costs in mind before you opt for retractable roof systems. If you want a more cost-effective option in the long run, then opening roofs will be your safest bet. They’re made of aluminium or stainless steel louvres that can withstand rain, hail, wind, snow and all the other elements. Moreover, opening roofs can last more than 20 years without any replacement required. When you decide to install opening roofs don’t hesitate to call Opening Roof Specialists. Our opening roof systems are of the highest quality. Thanks to many years of experience, we’ve figured out exactly which opening roof systems are the best and strongly recommend them to our customers.

Professional open roof installation.


Opening roof systems are made of solid aluminium and stainless steel which makes them incredibly resilient and durable. They will withstand even the harshest of Australian conditions. On top of that, you won’t have to worry about corrosion either. Unlike opening roofs, retractable solutions will probably not survive strong winds once you retract them during adverse weather events. Moreover, retractable roofs are likely to deteriorate in coastal conditions. That’s why opening windows are a much better solution for coast-side climates.

High quality aluminium open roof design.


No two homes are the same, so each of them requires a unique roofing system. Depending on your taste and the aesthetic appeal of your home, you’ll choose either opening roof systems or retractable roofs. When choosing between the two, it’s important to keep in mind the way in which you want the new roof system to tie in with existing structures around your property. Do you want the entire roof to feature adjustable remote-controlled opening roof blades? Maybe you’d prefer a partially fixed roof and partial opening options? With a retractable roof, you are limited to two options – open or closed. Opening roofs offer you the possibility to operate the roof and accessories from one remote control device, as well as a smartphone connection that will allow your Android or iOS operated smartphone to control the roof. All that while adding sophisticated style and value to your home.

Final Thoughts

When choosing between opening roofs and retractable roofs, you must keep several factors in mind. Not only will the price affect your choice, but you should also consider the mechanisms on which they operate, the design as well as the durability of a roofing system. Only then will you be able to choose the right option for your home.

Only The Best Pergola Builders Install The Eclipse Opening Roof System

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Our expert Design Consultant will phone you to confirm your enquiry details and gather some information before booking a convenient time to visit your property.

When we visit you at your property, we'll explain all the fantastic features and benefits of the Eclipse Opening Roof. Plus, we will discuss your main requirements, your must-have features, your design preferences, and answer any questions that you may have about the design, construction, and installation process.

Opening Roof Specialists is different to other pergola builders. Firstly, as the name suggests, we specialise in opening roof systems. We have a team of factory workers who build everything in-house, and a highly-skilled team of experienced roof installers who know exactly how to install our products. This guarantees the best-finished result on all pergolas, awnings, and alfresco roofs installed by Opening Roof Specialists.

Choose can help you to choose from a range of pergola products and accessories to elevate the luxury of your outdoor entertaining area, such as Ziptrak® UV SunScreen Blinds, outdoor heating, ceiling fans, LED lighting and more.

Opening Roof Specialists is Sydney's preferred installer of the Eclipse Opening Roof.
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