What Should I Consider When Purchasing a Barn Curtain System for My Barn?

When selecting a barn curtain system for your barn, there are a few key points to consider.  The key points are design, installation, and type of material, opening and controlling your curtain, and protecting your system from the elements.


What design do I want and need?  When designing a barn curtain system, choose the option that gives you the best air flow for maximum ventilation. Keeping in mind your winter ventilation needs, your size of animal, size of your barn, and the weather patterns in your area.  Make sure your system is designed and has the proper wind restraints. Systems can come in one, two, or three tier. 


Installation Time and Costs.  Installing a barn curtain system, whether you do it yourself or you hire your local dealer to do it, it is important to consider installation time.  Time costs money.  Many systems that use pulleys and cables which are hard to install and are costly to maintain. Keep installation easy. 


Not all curtain material is equal.  When selecting barn curtain material, make sure to pay attention to the weight, material, and color.   Using too thin and cheaper barn curtains will cause premature ripping and tearing. It will break down earlier and will cost you more in replacement costs in the future. Curtain material can vary from vinyl, to polyethylene, to insulated, to flame resistant. Make sure to select the material that works for your location and your animal’s needs.  The most common is polyethylene which is a woven material where individual strips are woven together forming a very tight fabric.    Make sure your material allows light in, otherwise, your barn will be too dark. Many times we are trying to control the hours of lighting for our animals and employees.   Many suppliers sew or stitch their barn curtain and hems which can rip and tear.  Once curtains rip, they allow for unwanted elements to enter the building. Look for curtains that are heat sealed for a fray free finish. 


How do I want to open and control my barn curtain?  One of the simplest ways to open your barn curtain is with a manual gear box. This works great when there is not electricity on site.  While a Shepard’s hook or drill are simple and very economical to use, these should only really be used when opening and closing curtains minimally.  Another simple way when electricity is available is to choose a motorized climbing drive, let the motor do the raising and lowering for you. The most efficient way to open and close your barn curtain is by automating it using a motorized drive and control.  Using a control with a temperature sensor that you can program to open/close when temperatures heat up or cool down based off of your individual need helps keep the barn’s temperature uniform day or night.


How am I going to protect my drive system? One of the most overlooked necessities for any barn curtain system is wind pockets. Wind pockets protect your drive system from snow and rain.  Make sure that you order enough to cover all of your end or center drives and that they are constructed of heavy gauge galvanized so they don’t rust and erode.  Also, make sure you can easily access your drive system. Look for wind pockets that are hinged and latched.   


A well-designed barn curtain system will ensure you get the longest life from your curtain and system.  Talk to an expert today to design a system that meets your needs and is custom designed based on your environment.  At J&D, we can help you design your system so you get it right the first time.