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How do electric roller shutters work?

Many people including those that own roller shutters don’t know how exactly they operate. You don’t need to be technical to know how electric roller shutters operate. Beyond the downward and upward movement of these shutters, there is a lot that goes on behind the scenes that you need basic knowledge about.

Understanding the basic operation of roller shutters will help you in many ways that may include the following;

  • You will easily know how to troubleshoot small problems when they occur. Without any knowledge of how these shutters operate, you may end up calling a technician only to realize the problem you want to fix was simply a dead remote battery that needed replacement
  • You will know how to do basic maintenance. Electric roller shutters need to be attended to more frequently than manual ones. If you don’t have the basic knowledge about how they operate, you will always have to call a technician even for minor maintenance tasks that you could do yourself and save money.
  • To make the right decisions while buying electric shutters: Someone who has basic knowledge about how shutters operate will easily know what features to prioritize while buying shutters compared to someone who is totally clueless 

Basic knowledge of how electric shutters work

Now that you understand why you need to know the basics of how electric shutters work, let’s get into more details.

Main parts of electric window roller shutters

To get a better understanding of how these shutters work, you will need to know the different parts that these shutters consist of. Some of the major parts include the following;

  • Cheek plate: This is the part of the shutter that is attached to the building. Its main role is to hold the shutter in position. So, it should be strong enough to hold the shutter and all its components.  
  • Curtain: The curtain is what makes up the main surface area of the roller shutters. It is the apart of the shutters that roll over up when the shutter is being opened and down when it is being closed. The rectangular metals sheets that are used to make the curtain are made out steel or any other metal sheet  
  • Guides: These are the U-shaped tubes that provide a pathway to the curtains. Guides are attached to the frame of the shutters on both sides.  
  • Bottom rail:  This is the section of the curtain that is at the bottom-most position of the curtain. It is usually T-shaped or L-shaped. It is the bottom rail where locking provisions of the shutter are normally attached 
  • Safety brake: This is in the form of a centrifugal brake that helps to stop the movement of the shutter during emergencies. This safety brake will automatically get activated when the motor’s safety brakes fail or when the curtain is being moved at uncontrolled speeds  
  • Motor: The motor is normally fixed in the shutter overhead assembly. Its main role is basically to generate and also control the motion of the curtains by spinning the rollers that are attached to the curtain
  • Canopy cowl: This is the upper section of the shutter where the cheek plate and many other parts of the electric shutter are housed. It is normally fabricated from galvanized steel. 

Opening and closing of electric roller shutters

Unlike manual roller shutters, electric shutters are opened and closed with the aid of an electric motor that spins the rollers. These rollers are attached to the curtains that follow their motion during closing and opening. The direction of the rollers determines whether the curtain rolls upwards or downwards. The motor spins in the clockwise direction to close the shutter and in the anti-clockwise direction to open.

The speed at which the curtains roll to the top and bottom is controlled by the motor. In most cases, this speed is fixed and is determined during the design process of the shutter. So, if you notice any changes in the speed at which the curtain rolls over, there will most likely be a problem somewhere that may need your attention.

Some basic troubleshooting tips 

Electric roller shutters just like any other electric equipment can experience major and minor failures that you may have to fix. Here are some of the tips you should use while troubleshooting

  • If the shutter makes noise while being opened, the problem is most likely with the motor or the guides have been deformed in some way  
  • When the curtains don’t move at all, the issue will most likely be the motor not receiving power, or the connection between the sensors and your remote has been last.
  • When the shutter moves slowly, there is most likely something blocking the curtains within the guides or the motor is not getting enough power
  • When the curtain vibrates during motion, the problem is most likely with the bearings or the motor.

Final thoughts 

Window roller shutters are becoming more common on buildings because of the extra layer of security they add to the glass windows. Having these shutters automated makes the process of opening and closing them very effortless which reduces the risk of not properly closing the shutters. 

Just like we shared above, knowing how these shutters work is important because of the several reasons we listed. If you have these shutters at your house, take some time off and identify all the parts we listed above so that you get a clear picture of what we are talking about. If you don’t own a house with these shutters, you may take a look at those within your neighborhood or workplace

Need more help?

  • 1800 748 887
  • sales@auwrs.com.au