Retractable roofs are considered stylish, luxurious and expensive,
usually seen as a standout feature in the homes of millionaires or upscale
Canadian-based retractable roof specialist Libart is now bringing
retractable roofs within the reach of many Australians with a complete
manufacturing setup in Australia. Operating in 20 countries worldwide, Libart
began manufacturing in Australia two years ago and has already started rolling
out its products.
New homeowners in Australia are increasingly incorporating high end home
design features such as bi-fold doors, sliding glass panels, outdoor kitchens and
alfresco areas as they look for a new wow factor. By making retractable roofs
affordable, Libart has been able to increase the product’s popularity in the
Libart will soon be talking to architects and dealers in Perth ahead of
its launch in WA. Commenting on the product’s growing popularity, Libart dealer
development manager Richard Gillan said that retractable roofs are already well
known in sporting arenas and commercial buildings for their ability to provide
year-round weather control. But the growing interest from the residential
market is a new one and attributed to its practical application as well as the wow
Mr Gillan explains that retractable roofs are especially well liked for
their ability to create an atrium feature in a home, introducing interesting lighting
effects and a contemporary design to any area. Retractable roofs are also
recommended over swimming pools, enabling the pool or spa to be used year-round.
The roof can be left open on summer days and closed during the colder days; in a
heated pool application, the retractable roof would also help keep heating
The roofs can be retrofitted to existing residences or designed when
planning a new home. Retractable roofs offer automated operation with a remote
control as well as rain sensors that close the roof automatically when the
first drops of rain are sensed.
According to Mr Gillan, the most popular systems for residential
applications are made from 16mm multiwall polycarbonate because they are lighter
and use tubular motors. Significantly stronger than triple-wall polycarbonate,
polycarbonate eliminates 99 per cent of harmful UV rays and is available in a
large range of colours to match design schemes.
Libart retractable roofs are also available with glass panels, which are
much heavier with their worm drives. The panels are 29mm thick, laminated and
double glazed, combining the strength of a toughened laminated section and an outer
tinted toughened glass separated by an argon gas layer for enhanced durability
to reduce solar transmissions while providing maximum insulation.