Motorized Shades: Breaking Down the 4 Power Options
When installing motorized window treatments, integrators have four main options for powering the units.
Motorized Shades: Breaking Down the 4 Power Options

Controlling natural light is an integral part of lighting control, along with systems for the control of artificial light from fixtures.

Installing motorized window treatments is becoming much easier these days with new technologies simplifying the installation for dealers.

But there are still only four options for powering shades.

Line Voltage: This should be the only way integrators should attempt to power exterior shades and awnings. These outdoor window treatments often will be raising and lowering in unprotected environmental conditions, such as heavy rain, snow or high winds. Each of those factors could cause the shades to struggle if the power is inadequate.

Line voltage should also be used if there is the potential for interference to the low voltage signal. Shades in rooms with lots of RFI would not be ideal to use a wireless control interface.

Heavy drapes that require large motors are also ideal candidates for line voltage. The last thing you want to do is burn up a motor or battery. Line voltage allows an integrator to automate and track the movement of the shades. Of course, line voltage will require a CE pro to either have his own electrical license or partner with an electrician to bring power to the shades.


Battery Powered: This power solution is ideal for retrofit. There are no wires to be run, making for a quicker, easier installation. Integrators need to be aware of the different battery types necessary for different types and weights of shades. Now available! battery-powered roller shades in sizes up to 144” wide and 144” tall. Learn more.

Low Voltage: Low-voltage powered units also have a lower installation cost than line voltage. Low voltage also allows you to automate and track the movement of the shades.

Digital Low Voltage: This option should be used if the installation involves a room with multiple window treatments that need to raise and lower in unison. It’s an ideal option for corporate boardrooms.


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