What are LRVs and why are they important when selecting exterior colours?

The LRV (Light Reflectance Value) indicates the amount of light a colour reflects. Black absorbs all light and heat and has an LRV of 0. White has an LRV of 100 as it reflects all light and therefore keeps homes cooler. All colours fit in between. For example, the cladding in this home is Colorbond® Ironstone with an LRV of 10, which means it reflects 10% of the light that falls on it and will absorb more heat.

If you are looking to paint the exterior of your home in a white colour scheme, we recommend selecting white colour options with an LRV of 85 or less, this will ensure the outside of your home does not end up being too bright and glary to the human eye. Our popular Wattyl exterior whites with an LRV of less than 85 include Wattyl Astor White (LRV 82), Wattyl Floral White (LRV 72) and Colorbond® Surfmist (LRV 69).

When selecting darker colours for an exterior substrate, please check with the supplier if there are any LRV requirements, as some are heat sensitive and will have specific recommendations to support the product warranty. For example, James Hardie Hardietex Blue Board generally requires a paint colour to have an LRV above 40.

Colours: Colorbond® Ironstone and Wattyl White.

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