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Classification of COLORBOND® steel colours for BCA and NSW BASIX
last updated 12/02/15
Light coloured (low solar absorptance) roofing material keeps cooler than darker coloured (high solar absorptance) roofing material. The cooler temperature has many benefits including the ability to reduce the energy costs for cooling a building. In order to recognise the cooling benefit of lower solar absorptance roofing some building regulations have incorporated it as an energy efficiency design parameter. Lower solar absorptance roofing typically qualifies for a roof insulation concession under prescriptive regulation. Alternatively, choosing low solar absorptance roofing lowers the assumed cooling (when using building verification software for compliance) helping achieve higher performance or lower building costs.
Colour Classification in Accordance with the BCA

The Building Code of Australia (BCA) has classified roof colour on the basis of their solar absorptance, referred herein as light, medium and dark, see the tables below for the ratings available for each product and colour.

Colour Classification in Accordance with the New South Wales BASIX

The New South Wales Building and Sustainability Index (BASIX) has also classified colour into light medium and dark on the basis of their solar absorptance. The light, medium and dark categories are also to be used in NatHERS accredited software if the verification path is used to meet the BASIX thermal comfort requirement. See the tables below for the solar absorptance and BASIX colour classification for our products.

SA=Solar Absorptance: The classification of colours in the BCA is based on solar absorptance, which is the inverse of solar reflectance, expressed as a ratio between 0 and 1. A SA value of 0 indicates that a roof absorbs none and a value of 1 indicates that a roof absorbs 100% of the incoming solar radiation.

The solar absorptance values shown are not applicable for COLORBOND® Stainless steel. See the individual colour swatches for the SA value for each product and colour.

BCA = The Building Code of Australia (BCA) has classified roof colour on the basis of their solar absorptance, referred herein as Light (L < 0.40), Medium (M < 0.60), Dark (D > 0.60). See the individual colour swatches for the ratings available for each product and colour. BCA classification is correct at the time of publishing but may be subject to change. Check your local state building regulations at the time of your project.

Table 1 - Classification of COLORBOND® steel Colours for BCA and BASIX for the COLORBOND® steel Standard 22 Colours
Colour Solar Absorptance BCA Classification BASIX Classification
Classic Cream™ 0.32 L L
Surfmist® 0.32 L L
Paperbark® 0.42 M L
Shale Grey™ 0.43 M L
Evening Haze® 0.43 M L
Dune® 0.47 M L
Cove® 0.54 M M
Windspray® 0.58 M M
Pale Eucalypt® 0.60 M M
Gully® 0.63 D M
Wallaby® 0.64 D M
Mangrove® 0.64 D M
Jasper® 0.68 D M
Manor Red® 0.69 D M
Basalt® 0.69 D M
Terrain® 0.69 D M
Woodland Grey® 0.71 D D
Monument® 0.73 D D
Ironstone® 0.74 D D
Cottage Green® 0.75 D D
Deep Ocean® 0.75 D D
Night Sky® 0.96 D D
Note: These values do not relate to the COLORBOND® Stainless steel range. These values are for standard COLORBOND® steel and COLORBOND® Ultra steel colours incorporating Thermatech® solar reflectance technology.
Table 2 - Classification of COLORBOND® Metallic steel for BCA and BASIX
Colour Solar Absorptance BCA Classification BASIX Classification
Galactic™ 0.34 L L
Cosmic™ 0.39 L L
Rhea™ 0.49 M M
Astro® 0.62 D M
Aries™ 0.70 D M
Celestian™ 0.93 D D
Table 3 - Classification of COLORBOND® Coolmax® steel for BCA and BASIX
Colour Solar Absorptance BCA Classification BASIX Classification
Whitehaven® 0.23 L L
Notes:

Key: L-Light: M-Medium: D-Dark

The classification of colours based on solar absorptance measured in accordance with ASTM E 903-96, Standard test method for solar absorptance, reflectance and transmittance of materials using integrating spheres.

Solar absorptance is a thermal property and is not suitable for evaluation of visual impacts. For further information refer to Technical Bulletin TB 28 - Building Materials, Thermal Efficiency and Reflectivity (242 KB).

ZINCALUME® steel is not included in the Tables above. Unpainted metal coated roofs, such as ZINCALUME® steel, have a low thermal emittance so perform differently to conventional painted surfaces (high emittance) from both an energy efficiency basis and impact upon urban heating. For the purpose of BCA and NSW BASIX ZINCALUME® steel should be considered a medium colour (per ASTM E1980).

For more information Download NSW Building & Sustainability Index (BASIX) (107 KB). This document contains information on the New South Wales Building and Sustainability Index (BASIX) for residential buildings. A BASIX Certificate is required as part of the development approval process for all new residential buildings (including new multi-unit residential developments such as villas, townhouses and low-rise, mid-rise and high-rise developments) in New South Wales. Alterations and additions requiring a development application will also require a BASIX Certificate.

IMPORTANT - The COLORBOND® steel colours shown on this site have been reproduced to represent actual product colours as accurately as possible. However, we recommend checking your chosen colour against an actual sample of the product before purchasing, as limitations of web palette colours affect colour tones. Contact BlueScope Steel Direct on 1800 022 999 to request colour samples.