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Roof glare

By LovemyTown - 15 February 2015 14

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Does anyone know the rules re glare from metal garage’s and solar panels? I cannot open my kitchen blinds for several hours every afternoon due to blinding glare from a neighbours garage that was bad enough before he recently added solar panels.

I asked actpla if the panels were legal ( garage is only a meter from the fence) last November but so far no one wants to reply to me, despite a couple of polite phone calls.

If I don’t have a leg to stand on complaint wise I will go back to talking to my plants to grow faster but if someone has real information I would be grateful

What’s Your opinion?


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14 Responses to
Roof glare
agent_clone 7:51 pm 26 Mar 15

As a suggestion, there appears to be a number of solar glare reduction films for windows. Otherwise there are glare reduction blinds (that will let you still see out). The blinds use a sheer type material, you should be able to have both a sheer and a blockout blind on your system. I’m not sure if a specific type of material is required for glare reduction for blinds or not though.

A google search with the terms “blinds to reduce glare from solar panels” appears to bring up a few solutions.

Sandman 8:33 pm 21 Feb 15

Get some trees that will grow nice and tall along that boundary.

Maya123 6:02 pm 21 Feb 15

LovemyTown said :

Maya I will shade his panels with trees without a second thought. This might sound nasty but he didn’t want to use his own house roof where no one would have been impacted, didn’t discuss it with me and now doesn’t care I cannot see for scorching glare. His answer is “its my property so I can do as I like”

http://www.environmentcommissioner.act.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/590940/Solar_Access_Paper_OCT_2010.pdf
“with the introduction of guaranteed feed in tariffs for solar generation on domestic roofs, there is now a mechanism whereby a resident can claim “economic/financial loss” if trees or other structures on neighbouring properties causes adverse effect on the lessee/resident’s ability to generate power.”

I visited a house in Sydney which was owned by a lawyer. He said he would sue anyone who shaded his panels for loss of income for thirty years. Whether he would be successful, who knows, but he threatened to do it.

For interest, this is what happens in California. I have seen several articles on solar access rights which quote this example, as a functioning example.
http://www.gosolarcalifornia.ca.gov/solar_basics/rights.php

As more people get solar and complain about their panels being shaded, especially if done viciously on purpose, I imagine such legislation might be called for here. This would actually be a good piece of legislation for electricity companies to push for and then continue to offer customers contracts when the present ones run out. They are worried about, as batteries improve and become cheaper, customers leaving them and going off-grid, but the customers are less likely to go off-grid if they can remain with the company and sell their power to the company, if they are protected from “economic/financial loss” by being able to recover this from the person shading the panels. If they went off-grid, they might not have this coverage, even if they are sitting in the dark.

LovemyTown, you write as though your neighbour set out to upset you on purpose. I’m sure the outcome was unexpected; both from the glare and from you.

LovemyTown 7:21 am 21 Feb 15

Thanks for the replies everyone. A solution doesn’t seem hopeful.

Maya123 I like sun and light as well but I have the same problem as grunge_hippy, it is so bright it is blinding so I am forced to close my blinds and turn on my kitchen lights to see what I am doing, so my neighbour gets cheap electricity and I increase mine ( minor I know as its just lights) something isn’t right there to me. It also makes it impossible to sit outside on my deck late afternoon due to the glare so now I am looking at blinds for the deck!

Maya I will shade his panels with trees without a second thought. This might sound nasty but he didn’t want to use his own house roof where no one would have been impacted, didn’t discuss it with me and now doesn’t care I cannot see for scorching glare. His answer is “its my property so I can do as I like”.

Dungfungus now that is a tempting idea 🙂

PS a week later and still no government reply, glad I wasn’t holding my breathe

Maya123 9:24 pm 16 Feb 15

grunge_hippy said :

err because I like to have light, but not be so blinded by the mirror like effect this roof emits. I’m surprised there aren’t burn marks on my wall.

Maya123 said :

grunge_hippy said :

I wondered this too as our neighbours have a colourbond roof and it is really bad for most of the day right into our lounge room (can’t watch the TV with blind open)

There was planning approval submitted (they split the block and built a second house) but you don’t think of these things during the time when you can complain.

“(can’t watch the TV with blind open)” Um er, neither can many people. Close the blind like much of the rest of the population does. On the rare occasion I watch TV in the daylight I close the blind.

Pale coloured roofs are the most energy efficient. But from all the black roofs out there and then people here complaining about light roofs, it appears many people don’t care less about energy consumption. It’s dark roofs which should be banned. Yes extra insulation can be added to counteract the higher temperatures caused by dark roofs, but why cause this problem in the first place?

And why does sunlight shining into a house worry some people so much? In winter sunlight fills up my house. It’s why I don’t need to heat and get winter energy bills of less than $200 (this includes service costs). My pale grey roof also helps lower my energy bills. No neighbour has complained, and trust me, the neighbour on my northern side would have complained if it was a problem.

I’m sorry the reflection is stronger than the light from the sun.

grunge_hippy 8:54 pm 16 Feb 15

err because I like to have light, but not be so blinded by the mirror like effect this roof emits. I’m surprised there aren’t burn marks on my wall.

Maya123 said :

grunge_hippy said :

I wondered this too as our neighbours have a colourbond roof and it is really bad for most of the day right into our lounge room (can’t watch the TV with blind open)

There was planning approval submitted (they split the block and built a second house) but you don’t think of these things during the time when you can complain.

“(can’t watch the TV with blind open)” Um er, neither can many people. Close the blind like much of the rest of the population does. On the rare occasion I watch TV in the daylight I close the blind.

Pale coloured roofs are the most energy efficient. But from all the black roofs out there and then people here complaining about light roofs, it appears many people don’t care less about energy consumption. It’s dark roofs which should be banned. Yes extra insulation can be added to counteract the higher temperatures caused by dark roofs, but why cause this problem in the first place?

And why does sunlight shining into a house worry some people so much? In winter sunlight fills up my house. It’s why I don’t need to heat and get winter energy bills of less than $200 (this includes service costs). My pale grey roof also helps lower my energy bills. No neighbour has complained, and trust me, the neighbour on my northern side would have complained if it was a problem.

Maya123 4:21 pm 16 Feb 15

grunge_hippy said :

I wondered this too as our neighbours have a colourbond roof and it is really bad for most of the day right into our lounge room (can’t watch the TV with blind open)

There was planning approval submitted (they split the block and built a second house) but you don’t think of these things during the time when you can complain.

“(can’t watch the TV with blind open)” Um er, neither can many people. Close the blind like much of the rest of the population does. On the rare occasion I watch TV in the daylight I close the blind.

Pale coloured roofs are the most energy efficient. But from all the black roofs out there and then people here complaining about light roofs, it appears many people don’t care less about energy consumption. It’s dark roofs which should be banned. Yes extra insulation can be added to counteract the higher temperatures caused by dark roofs, but why cause this problem in the first place?

And why does sunlight shining into a house worry some people so much? In winter sunlight fills up my house. It’s why I don’t need to heat and get winter energy bills of less than $200 (this includes service costs). My pale grey roof also helps lower my energy bills. No neighbour has complained, and trust me, the neighbour on my northern side would have complained if it was a problem.

dungfungus 4:13 pm 16 Feb 15

Plant trees like blue spuce as close to the PVs as you can. When they start letting the pollen dust loose they will force the warmist next door to wash his solar array daily.

Madam Cholet 3:39 pm 16 Feb 15

Call Cheif Minister talkback on Friday at 9am. It’s the only way you get around the issue of not getting responses from the various departments. Many of the callers say they have received no response and that’s why they are calling. They spruik the time on the radio as having an accessible CM and a way to ‘get things done’. I’d say being known as the only avenue to get things done is a message you shouldn’t be advertising!

grunge_hippy 9:18 pm 15 Feb 15

I wondered this too as our neighbours have a colourbond roof and it is really bad for most of the day right into our lounge room (can’t watch the TV with blind open)

There was planning approval submitted (they split the block and built a second house) but you don’t think of these things during the time when you can complain.

Maya123 8:07 pm 15 Feb 15

Postalgeek said :

I don’t know your situation in regards to heights etc, but if you can address the situation with a planting, as it sounds like you have done, it’s probably the best way to deal with the problem. You could erect a trellis with a bit of shade cloth for some temporary faster growers while the slower tree/shrubs grew.

Even if the garage wasn’t glaring, it would still be nicer to look at trees.

But it would be a bad neighbour who shaded the neighbours’ solar panels. I wouldn’t recommend it if you want to get on with your neighbours and live in a friendly neighbourhood.

Postalgeek 7:33 pm 15 Feb 15

I don’t know your situation in regards to heights etc, but if you can address the situation with a planting, as it sounds like you have done, it’s probably the best way to deal with the problem. You could erect a trellis with a bit of shade cloth for some temporary faster growers while the slower tree/shrubs grew.

Even if the garage wasn’t glaring, it would still be nicer to look at trees.

Maya123 5:49 pm 15 Feb 15

In my previous house, if the neighbours orientated their windows in a certain way the reflected sun would shine straight in my bedroom window in the early morning. I loved it, as it was so cheerful to wake up to sunlight. My present house lets the sun pour in . Again wonderful. I would suggest enjoying it, or pull down the blind.
There are rules regarding roof colour. White and galvanised roofs are banned in Canberra, at least where they can be seen from the road. The palest colour which someone can use here is pale grey or beige. Light coloured roofs lower energy bills.

arescarti42 3:29 pm 15 Feb 15

I’m not aware of any rules, and I’d be surprised if there were any. Unlike things like noise pollution, light pollution is much easier to deal with.

One suggestion which you may find useful is to use reflective space blankets on your window. You can get them off ebay for $1-2, cut them to size, and stick them to the window via static (i just spritz the glass with water and they stick well).

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