How to select the right louvre for your next project

Selecting right louvre for your next project

Although every commercial and industrial building requires louvres, either for ventilation or simply as a vision screen, there in often insufficient consideration given to exactly what the system is required to achieve. This is particularly common when it comes to “Performance Louvre” and the need to exclude wind driven rain. When selecting the right louvre, these basic factors must be considered.

•   How important is rain defence?
•   Is maximum air flow crucial to your design’s success?
•   Is it simply an architectural vision screen, with the sole function of ensuring plant equipment is hidden from sight and therefore zero vision is the priority?

Ultimately, everyone wants 100% rain defence and 100% air flow. However, this is not always achievable and there is a compromise between these two performance factors. In Australia the AS/NZS 4740:2000 sets out the test method and standard for testing natural ventilators.
This method of testing and performance classification provides “comparative” performance data for both Rain Defence and Airflow and offers protection to the specifier and clear guidance to contractors on project requirements and performance expectations.

Louvre Selection Guide

Download our simple to use spreadsheet – louvre selection guide. It offers an overview of each product allowing you to quickly compare the performance and select the louvre that meets your project requirements.

Draft Specifications - Easy-to-use word files with AS/NZS 4740:2000

For your convenience, we’ve put together all our performance louvre draft specs into one handy download.
Should you require any further assistance with louvre specification and selection, please contact us on 1300 165 678 or send an email to:

Without being a louvre expert, how do we ensure that what is calculated is accurate and beneficial to us when selecting the right louvre?

No matter which of these methods you choose to use, not one of these take into consideration any specific air flow rate or pressure drop (Pa) unique to that louvre profile, nor do they consider the weather performance characteristics of the louvre. On this basis we can easily conclude that Percentage Free Open Area is not the most accurate way to measure louvre performance or to select the right louvre.
In order to accurately compare like with like, a louvre must be tested to the Australian standard, AS/NZS 4740:2000.

AS/NZS 4740-2000 sets out all the guidelines for performance testing and provides the classification system for natural ventilators.

This method of testing and performance classification provides “comparative” performance data for both Rain Defence and Airflow, offering protection to the specifier and a clear guide to the contractor regarding` project requirements and performance expectations.

This test can be conducted as either a physical test or through Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). The AS/NZS 4740:2000 test requires the dimensions of the test louvre to be 1mx1m which is then tested to at least five different air velocities. From this we assess the effective aerodynamic area and the coefficient of discharge (Cd) for that louvre profile.
For the rain defence test, the louvre panel is then subject to 75 L/hr m2 of wind driven rain at a velocity of 13m/s.

Percentage Free Open Area, Is it relevant to louvre performance?

We can now prove that the Percentage Free Open Area of a louvre is not the most accurate way to measure louvre performance or to select the right louvre.

To ensure you do specify the right performance louvre for your project, you can use the following process:

1.   Confirm that the louvre is tested to AS/NZS 4740:2000.
2.   Mechanical engineer defines the required Volume Flow Rate (m3/s) for mechanical plant or passive ventilation.
3.   Mechanical engineer defines the maximum allowable pressure drop (Pa) across a louvre before fan performance suffers.
4.   The architect and engineer balance the louvre façade area (m2) against the effective aerodynamic area of any louvre selections and the required rain resistance rating, to get a mutually workable outcome.
5.   Specify the louvre that works for your design aesthetically while also achieving the performance Classification required for both Aerodynamics and Rain Defence.

For example: Jupiter Series 2 Stage Louvre – Class A3 (Example schedule available on draft specification)


For more information please call Louvreclad and one of the team will be happy to answer any further questions you may have.

Interested to Learn More?

We’ve recently added a new page to our website which answers all your frequently asked questions.

We explain the myths and  provide technical expertise.

Request General Assembly Drawings

Did you know we also offer Architects and Specifiers our general assembly drawings from the latest completed projects.

Simply head to our Projects Page and hit the link on the bottom of the project you are most interested in. (Looks like the image below) Fill in the web form and we will send you the drawings. This enables you to capture engineered connection details based off precedence to ensure a successful outcome on your next project.

Sunshine Hospital Multi Storey Carpark, VIC

How a dynamic façade can be crafted out of standard components Burnt orange vertical battens from our Barossa Series® span over three levels of Sunshine Hospital’s new multi-level carpark, demarcating this significant structure as an architectural icon in itself. Silver Thomas Hanley Architects utilized a combination of powder coated aluminium ‘Z’ purlins and unequal angles […]

The Standard Apartments, Brisbane QLD

This stunning cylindrical shaped apartment tower in fish lane provides an iconic new sculptural landmark to South Brisbane. The building itself is constructed as 4 large cylindrical forms, joined together by a single glazed tower, with smaller cylindrical flutes integrated into a living green wall cladding the exterior. Louvreclad were contacted by Aria Property Group […]

St Bede’s Catholic College, Chisolm NSW

St Bede’s Catholic College showcases a series of internal Louvreclad Barossa Series® 150×45 vertical batten screens that curve to create social nooks and define the internal circulation trail which SHAC architects describe as the ‘Peregrine Trail’ (Peregrination: a meandering journey of discovery). Powdercoated in Decowood Silky Oak timber like finish, the screen brings a feeling […]