Battery motors for awnings and roller shutters: “There is no turning back”

09 May 2020

When we look at the demand from the market for battery motors for outdoor awnings and roller shutters, we can conclude that this type of drive is now fully accepted by the awning professional and is actively promoted in the showroom.

BREL HOME was at the basis of the introduction of the battery motor with solar panel. While the major brands were not yet ready for the introduction of completely cordless motors, Erik Budding and Reinoud Arts paved the way for this new phenomenon. In a conversation with both gentlemen, it is explained how this process went, what the current state of affairs is and where BREL HOME wants to go.

In the beginning…

“For BREL HOME, the desire to market battery motors for awning blinds and roller shutters arose from the success we had - and still have - with our battery motors for indoor blinds,” Budding opens the conversation. “We entered the market for interior sun protection years ago with the intention of being distinctive when it comes to installation, user and operating comfort. Of course that was a quest in which progressive insight from day one has resulted in an end product that exactly meets the wishes of both the installer and the end user. The lessons we have learned have been invaluable to us in the development of our outdoor engines.”

Arts adds: “You often hear in the market that our engines ‘only come from China’. That's true, but that's true of almost all mass-produced electronics. What is much more important is that we have used our knowledge of battery motors for interior sun protection in the development of battery motors for outdoor use. There is indeed a piece of 'brains' from BREL HOME in it. That also means that we have dared to supply our battery motors for screens and roller shutters with a solar panel. Let's be honest, that is the ultimate added value for this product.”


Freedom in assembly and use

The battery motors with solar panel offer freedom, both to the mechanics and the end users. According to Budding, the combination of battery motor with solar panel is becoming the new standard. "There is no way back. Once you're used to working 100% cordless, there's no reason to go back to old ways. Of course, a very large part of our deliveries still consists of traditionally wired motors, but I only have to look at the numbers to see that the battery motor with solar panel is winning the race. Think of it as an evolution that was just about to happen. Working with battery motors prevents drilling, chopping and breaking work, unsightly cabling and offers perspectives for faster and more efficient assembly. The end user then has a sun protection product -or roller shutter- that is aesthetically better. Everyone wins.”

Knowledge and experience must ensure a lasting advantage

For a long time, BREL HOME has been the only brand actively marketing battery motors with solar panels. The company was therefore the only provider at this level. Meanwhile, BREL HOME no longer has a monopoly position. When asked what BREL HOME thinks of the fact that there are now several providers on the market, Arts answers matter-of-factly: “That is no problem for us. The advantage is that we are not alone in making this fantastic product known. The consumer is ready and can be bombarded with advertising from several directions. It is nice that a number of manufacturers have actively opted for BREL and offer our battery motors in assembled products. We have thus laid a firm foundation. We consolidate our lead that we have built up by continuing to innovate. As said, part of the technology comes from us and we are not sitting still. For example, we are now developing a 40 Nm battery motor, with the battery integrated in the motor tube, just like our other battery motors. As far as I am concerned, our knowledge and experience are the decisive factor in staying on the ball and maintaining the lead in a market that is expanding.”

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