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What is the difference between motorised and automated blinds?

By: Oli Birch Category: BlindsRoller Blinds

We’ve seen a large increase in the use of automated systems over the last two years, with our manufacturing facility in Luton witnessing a 57% increase in the production of motorised roller blinds in 2022.

And when it comes to the future of blinds in buildings and office spaces, motorised and automated systems look set to be the way to go. But there is often confusion over the differences between the two.

In this blog, we’ll discuss what these are and emphasise why it’s important to consider what system you require early in the design process. And if this is a topic you’re interested in, keep an eye out for an announcement we’ll be making on Thursday 20th June…


In layman’s terms, motorised simply means the blinds operate using a motor and are controlled via a radio remote control/wall switch, or a hardwired wall switch through a motor control relay.

Automated blinds on the other hand, whilst still operated by a motor, don’t need to rely on human interaction to function. There are numerous ways in which these blinds can be controlled; from light sensors to timers, or integrating into the BMS (building management system).

Benefits of automation

Across the UK, there has been a huge rise in metallised fabrics being used on roller blinds. This is great, but the full potential of a high-performance fabric will never be reached if the blinds are manually operated or motorised without automation, as they will always rely on humans.

However, as mentioned previously, automated blinds do not have this issue. One of the main benefits of automated systems is the blinds can be programmed to work on a timer or linked into sun sensors. Their position is always at the optimum point for either reducing glare and heat entering the workspace, which saves on air conditioning and heating, or allowing more light into the area, which is saving on lighting costs.

Not only does this maximise the performance of the fabrics and save on energy costs, it also allows employees to fully focus on their work without the distraction of having to manually operate the blinds throughout the day.


As discussed earlier in the blog, it’s crucial to consider whether motorised or automated blinds will best suit your needs early on in the specification process.

The wiring requirements will likely be specific to the selected system, so having clarity on this early on is critical. It will provide greater accuracy in cost planning, as exact power supply requirements and cable runs can be allowed for.

Furthermore, you’ll be able to ensure that sufficient space for necessary control equipment is provided in riser locations, as this can vary significantly between different control systems.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss specifying one of these systems for your project, then please contact us here and keep an eye out for our new product range launching on Thursday 20th June…

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