Why are louvres inverted on a plant screen?

Louvred plant screens are used to hide unsightly HVAC equipment from view.

In a nutshell: 

  • Louvres on plant screens can face upwards or downwards
  • Angling louvres upwards provides a visual barrier from below
  • Downward-facing louvres are best when the HVAC is overlooked
  • Louvres are required to provide ventilation – solid screens don’t do that
  • Increasing the distance between louvre blades can reduce cost – but also reduce the effectiveness of the screen
  • Speak to a louvres specialist for value engineering possibilities

You’ll find them most often on rooftops, which are no-go areas for most people. So, the obvious question is... who do you want to hide the equipment from?

Using louvres to block the view from ground level

Angling the louvre blades downwards won’t provide any visual barrier from below. It’s best to angle them upwards.

Using louvres to block the view from above

Where the HVAC is overlooked, a downward-facing louvre will provide the best protection.

Using louvres to block views from the side.

Some rooftops double-up as public areas, so louvred screens need to hide HVAC from the side. Louvres can face up or down.

You might ask why use louvres at all. Wouldn’t a solid screen do the job? Here, the issue is ventilation – louvres allow air to pass through while keeping out the elements.

Other considerations

Depending on which way the louvres are facing, it may be possible to increase the distance between them – while still providing a seemingly solid barrier when viewed from certain angles. This value engineering can result in fewer components and reduce overall cost. However, it may also reduce the protection given to the HVAC equipment.

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