Use an App to Get to know the SunCovered
Tips to prepare to shade your home and how to use sun seeker app to understand the movement of the sun through the year. We will show you how to use an App to get to know the Sun.
When preparing to buy a retractable folding arm awning and provide the best outcome for sun protection, you really need to know what you are up against – the Sun.
To help better understand the movement of the sun and it’s seasonal shifts, we use and recommend the ‘Sun Seeker’ App. This app will allow you to view the path of the sun during any season, day or time of the year.
“Sundials are so 2008…”
Since 2009 using the sun seeker app, you can view any location using the ‘3D View’ . This simply put, is an “Augmented Reality” view (camera view with an overlay of the Sun’s path) to better see where the sun will travel through the year. This incredible app can show you where the sun will be at “4pm in Winter or 6pm during the Summer Solstice”. It can also show this information for any time in-between with its simple yet intuitive user interface.
The information provided may surprise you – especially the massive movement between summer and winter solstices. So while obvious attention is needed to be paid towards the summer season and where the shade provided will land. You should also consider the shade that will be provided – especially if the awning is a ‘fixed position’ style awning. If your awning is fixed, special attention needs to be paid towards the winter sun. If the awning is going to block some much needed sun during winter the awning could be making a negative impact. During the colder months we may actually wanting as much sun as possible. This is why a retractable awning is preferred to maximise your management of the sun.
Firstly you will need to consider what you would consider a “successful shade installation”.
Take this common situational request as an example…“We want to be able to use our deck without glare during winter but mostly want to be able to be out there during summer and ensure all our guests are covered from the sun during lunches, brunches or afternoon BBQs.”
This is to be the overarching goal needs to remain the prime focus above all else. Failure to do this may mean the install could fall short of this main desired outcome and not be as effective in achieving these goals.
So to gain a better understanding of the suitabilty of your space you can take a few minutes to understand your space better.
You will need:
- Tape measure
- Device with Sun Seeker App installed
At the location to be shaded, take into account the rough width, height & projection being considered for purchase. For a Folding Arm Awning with a 3m projection, take a broom and hold it 3m away from its proposed mounting position (wall, gutter, roof, etc).
Understanding the Desired Product
Folding Arm Awnings are often 1.9-2.4m in the air when fully extended (but this can vary greatly) so hold the broom handle at this preferred height from the floor level while the app user views the ‘3D View’ / AR [Augmented Reality 3D view] on the app to see where the sun will be throughout the year. With this viewing mode in operation, you can easily extrapolate an imaginary ‘shade line’. This line will be between where the sun will be, the lens of the Sunseeker enabled device and the ground.
Please consider seats, window, table or whatever is proposed to be shaded. Just make sure that at the time of year and time of day and you want the shade – it will be provided with the propsed awning location. i.e. From 11am onwards during September through February, the awning will shade our alfresco dining setting so anyone can sit under it and ensure they are shaded and won’t be left in the sun (or rain).
Perform this same task for the other side of the awning and mark the space between these points on the ground with chalk or by placing an object. This will create the imaginary (proposed) space you are required to shade – in order to achieve a successful shade installation project.
The above is a easy & helpful way to knowing where your shade will land in relation to your outdoor space. Therefore you can understand what the outcome of the project will be and what you can expect from your awning or roof system.
To help with this understanding, the app has a ‘CAMERA’ button that will take screen shots (like the images inserted) to show the person holding the broom. This will show them where the shade will start from and to. This will help to assess and relay this information to others at a later stage. You can also send these screenshots to your covered group supplier to speed up the awning selection process.
Understanding the App:
In a nutshell…
- Yellow line is the Suns path for “today” (The default is always set for ‘today’ or you can set any day in the date settings).
- Red Line is the summer solstice and shows the date of the next expected solstice. (This line may be obscured by the yellow line if viewing the app near the middle of summer.)
- Green line is March / September (whichever comes next) for the suns mid-season path in between Winter & Summer Solstices.
- Blue line is the winter solstice. (This line may be obscured by the yellow line if viewing the app near the middle of winter.)
Points to consider:
When checking your space for shade, ensure you sit down, stand up and move the device around to make sure that the shade will still work for you when seated towards the front edge of the awning as much as the sides. (Make sure you remember that the imaginary shadow line you create is formulated and based on the location/height of the lens on the device in relation to the surface it will be shading.)
This information is a guide only and to help you understand what is needed to better shade or shelter you from the elements.
Please ensure that the compass in your device is working and accurate. A tip for this is to make sure that the arrow that points towards the sun is actually pointing towards the sun with reasonable accuracy. If it is not pointing towards the sun in AR/3D mode [augmented reality 3D mode] then the information you acquire will be incorrect.
To gain a wholistic view on your proposed awning purchase, the Covered Group recommends expert advice from a Covered Group Shade Expert to provide a professional shade consultation. This will create the best understanding of your project needs across many variables and provide the best outcome possible.
NOTE: This is not sponsored, paid or endorsed content. We have used this app across hundreds of shade projects and found the results to be consistently very close to the expectations set out by using this app and process.