Sun Lizard Solar Air Shifter

How Does It Work?
How Effective Is It?
Building Suitability

Sun Lizard Solar Air Shifter -- Frequently Asked Questions

Performance & Durability
Functionality & Aesthetics
Air Quality
Installation & Distribution
Testimonals and installed examples
Ordering, Purchasing and Shipping
Certification & Warranty Questions
General Home Energy Efficiency


  • How much air flow can I expect from the System?
    The air flow rate of the Air shifter is 6m3/min produced by 4 solar powered fans. This is sufficient to transfer air from one room to up to two rooms simultaneously.
  • Do I need additional heating if a Sun Lizard is installed?

The Sun Lizard Air Shifter extends the reach and effectiveness of existing heating and cooling systems, as well as reducing the need to use them. However, the Sun Lizard should not be solely relied as the only source of heating and cooling.  If you have an existing heating or cooling system, you will find that you won’t need to use it as often as the Air Shifter will consistently keep the whole building at a more even temperature. If you live in a new building without any existing heating or cooling system in place, you may be able to reduce the size of more traditional heating or cooling systems, depending on the solar efficiency of your building design. Small radiant/convection panel heaters such as Econoheat's Electric Panel Heaters only use from 200 watts to 425 watts depending on size and may be sufficient for your needs.

  • The building suitability assessment says that my house is not suitable, what simple things can I do to my home that will make the Sun Lizard work more successfully?

If the negative assessment report is due to poor insulation or thermal mass, then you should consider adding insulation and sealing up gaps around doors and windows.
For more detailed information also see

  • Will it work on cloudy, rainy days?
    The Sun Lizard needs some sunlight to work if you are purely relying on solar electricity to generate the air movement through solar electricity.  On overcast days there is still sunlight coming through the clouds, but it is not as strong.  The Sun Lizard will continue to operate, but at a slower pace and will not be at the standard speed as if it was a clear sky.  If it is dark and cloudy or raining heavily, the Sun Lizard will not be operating. If the Sun Lizard is using a mains powered backup system the solar energy will be augmented by mains power whenever necessary to maintain the air flow rate.
  • How does it work when there is no sunlight?
    At night the solar functions stop working.   However if you have the optional mains backup connected, it can continue to move air around your building using mains power.
  • What if I don’t have that much sun on my roof?
    The Sun Lizard needs to get a minimum amount of sunlight to work, generally at least 4-5 hours on average a day.  If you don’t get this minimum amount, then the Sun Lizard may not work for you.

    See the Quick Suitability Assessment for more details.
  • How long will it last?
    The PV Panel has a 10 year warranty and an expected life of  at least 25 years.  The fans and electronics have a 2 year warranty, and an expected life of  5-10 years or longer depending on the location and local conditions. Click here for more details on our warranties.
  • Will it rust if I live near salty water?
    All metals will eventually deteriorate in salty conditions.  We have used materials that are suitable for seaside installations, but you should check with your builder or a local plumber to ensure that it will survive your local conditions.
  • Is it cyclone proof?  Will it blow off my roof?
    When securely fixed to the roof structure, the Air Shifters are extremely robust and should easily survive severe weather conditions.  If your area is prone to severe weather you should use a local installer who is familiar with the conditions. It is the installer’s responsibility to ensure that the installation is secure.
  • Do I need to maintain it?
    There are no specific maintenance requirements.  However, from time to time you should check that the fans and batteries are still functional.  The fans can easily be checked because if they fail there will be less air coming out of the Sun Lizard.  Switch from high to low speed to confirm there is a change in air volume (note the noise on low will be a higher pitch than on high). The batteries are likely to last 8-10 years and may continue to function after this.  If you believe there may be a fan problem contact us for more details. 


  • Is there an off button?
    Yes you can switch it off.  However, the Sun Lizard is designed to operate every day using free solar energy to evenly distribute the air in your building.  Even if you feel the building is the right temperature, we recommend that you switch the fans to low rather than off, which will continue to provide a small amount of air movement and will maintain the current temperature.
  • Is there a switch to reverse the air flow?
    No. The fans are one direction only.
  • Is there a thermostat?
    The current Sun Lizard Air Shifter does not use a thermostat.
  • How many ducts (inlet and outlet) can I have? How many rooms can it do?
    The Air Shifter can have a maximum of two inlets and two outlets at one time. The possible combinations include:

One inlet and one outlet (supplied in the standard system)
One inlet and two outlets (standard system + one additional room duct kit)
Two inlets and one outlet (standard system + one additional room duct kit)
Two inlets and two outlets (standard system + two additional room duct kit)

  • Can I integrate it with my current ducted system?
    This is not recommended.  The solar function may operate against your existing system unless carefully designed and integrated.
  • Will the temperature of the air be adversely affected if I pass the air on top of the roof where the system is exposed?

The system will be able to retain the temperature of the air as ducts will be insulated to a value of R1 and a colorbond roof protector should be provided at installation to protect it from the elements.

  • Will it look too obtrusive on my roof?
    In most cases you will not see the Sun Lizard on your roof.  The only component likely to be seen is the PV Panel which will generally be lying flat on your roof.  It is only when the system cannot be installed in a roof cavity that some components may need to be on top of the roof.  (see pictures on .. page)
  • What if my building is bigger than what the unit can do?  Can I put more units in, hook them up in series?
    If you have worked through the Suitability Assessment and the space you want to transfer air from or too is insufficient, then you can add a second unit or other combinations. 
  • What are the restrictions on ducting length?
    Try to minimise the ducting length as much as possible as it will allow better efficiency in air transfer and allow the temperature of the air to be maintained. We advise that the total length of ducting inclusive of all inlet and outlet ducts be kept to 12m.
  • What about noise?
    The new version has virtually eliminated any fan noise due to the acoustic design and additional foam insulation.  If installed according to the recommendations in the Installation Guide, you should not notice any noise at all.  If you place the fan box too close to the ceiling return vent and have no insulation in your ceiling, you may notice a small noise like a computer cooling fan, which is still a lot quieter than most traditional heating and cooling systems.
  • Can I install air shifter on the wall or have it suspended in the roof?
    Yes you can have the fan box installed on a wall or suspended inside the roof. Depending on whether it is exposed, it may need a colorbond cover and extra insulation to maintain the temperature of the air being transferred to and from the rooms.



  • What about the air quality?  Where does the air come from?  Can I take it from my ceiling cavity?
    Unlike some other heating systems that draw air from the ceiling cavity, the Sun Lizard draws air from inside your building, where it is reasonably clean.  The air in the ceiling cavity of many homes is very dusty and may have contaminants from birds, rodents and fibreglass or asbestos.  We don’t recommend using air from this space for those reasons. No external air enters the room via the Sun Lizard.
  •  Does the Sun Lizard affect humidity?
    The Sun Lizard does not change the humidity in the building.  However, by circulating the air and making the building temperature at a comfortable level, it stops the build up of damp or humidity.



  • What if I can’t find a distributor in the area that I live? What if I can’t find someone to install the Sun Lizard for me?
    It is quite easy to install and we provide an installation guide on our website. If you choose to engage a local plumber we do provide all the installation components. We would also be happy to work with your local plumber and offer step by step instructions on how to install a Sun Lizard.
  • How can I assess the suitability of the Sun Lizard in my home or building? Can I get someone to do a site inspection?
    You can fill in the Suitability Self Assessment Test and this will give you a good picture of your homes suitability.  If you are confident the Sun Lizard is going to work and need a quote for installation, check out the distributor list to find someone close to you who may be able to quote or offer some good advice.
  • Can I do it myself or get my friend to install the Sun Lizard on to my roof?
    We recommend using a qualified tradesman to do the installation so it is done professionally.  However it is a relatively simple installation and can be done by yourself.  Please check any local requirements or laws that need a qualified tradesman.  As the Sun Lizard doesn’t use mains power, only 12 volt from the PV Panel, you don’t need an electrician to do the wiring, unless you wish to access mains power backup, in which case you need access to a power point. If there is no convenient existing power point, an additional power point must be installed by a qualified electrician.


  • If I have a cathedral ceiling or a flat roof or deck roof will it still work in my home or building?
    Flat roof or cathedral ceilings require the installation of external ducting on the roof, where the external temperature may affect the temperature of the air being shifted.  This effect is minimised by careful planning: locate the inlets and outlets to minimise the length of external duction, and also weatherproof and insulate the ducting. 
  • I want to become a distributor or installer, how do I get involved?
    We are always looking for enthusiastic distributors and qualified tradespeople who are keen to promote sustainable products. Contact us with your interest and experience.  We provide product information and installation training sessions around Australia so will advise you when one will occur in your area.

I WANT TO SEE ONE , Testimonials

  • What if I can’t see a working display of a Sun Lizard in the area that I live in? Where can I find working displays?
    See our showcase page for examples of installed Sun Lizards.
    Most of our installations are invisible from the ground so are not suitable for viewing.  We also respect the privacy of our customers and unless volunteered, we do not approach existing customers asking for them to talk to prospective customers.  However, if you tell us which area you are in, we will try to find the location of a display unit or installed unit that that the customer is happy to show it off to you.
  • What do other people think about your product? What are some of the best things about the Sun Lizard people comment on? Why would I want to by a Sun Lizard?
    The most common thing people say is “What a fantastic idea” and “Why hasn’t it been done before?”  Existing customers say they feel much more comfortable and their energy bills have gone down.  Many customers buy a Sun Lizard because they want to reduce their energy consumption and bills, but also to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and global warming.



  • What is the cost of the Sun Lizard Air Shifter?
    The cost of a Sun Lizard Solar Air Shifter unit is $795 plus installation.
  • How much does it cost to install on my home?
    Installation costs can range from about $200 to $500 depending on the structure of the house and whether you choose to install it yourself or arrange for an installer or plumber to make the installation
  • How much is the cost of delivering a Sun Lizard to my home or building?
    Depending on where you are in Australia it will vary from $20 to around $120. It is manufactured and dispatched from the outer eastern suburbs of Melbourne.
  • Are there any rebates or subsidies available for the Sun Lizard?
    Currently there are no rebates or other subsidies.  From time to time various government agencies have grants for installing energy efficient products and the Sun Lizard qualifies for these.  We are presently working through the process of getting rebates and would appreciate your support.  Please email us at to add your name to a petition to get rebates for solar heating products.
  • What is the payback period?
    If you are planning to integrate the Sun Lizard into a new climate control system for your home or building, the payback is immediate - because having the Sun Lizard means that you only need to purchase smaller capacity heating and cooling appliances. The total cost, with Sun Lizard, will be about the same or less than without the Sun Lizard. If you have an existing climate control system, the payback period will vary from 3-10 years, depends on a number of factors.  These include your existing heating and cooling system (gas/electric/reverse cycle) and your home (how energy efficient is itPlease see our Comparison Tables for further information.
  • How do I order?
    Fill out the Quick Suitability Form to assess the best product for your needs.  Then follow the directions on the How To Order page.

  • How long will it take for the order to arrive?
    Once you have placed an order, we confirm payment and delivery details are correct and then ship with a few days.  Generally you can expect your Sun Lizard to arrive within 5-7 days from payment.



  • Does the Sun Lizard have any certification, rating or is under BASIX or 5 Star?
    The Sun Lizard is a new generation product and is unique in Australia.  As such we are breaking new ground with standards, certification and ratings.  We are actively working with various government and other agencies to deliver the best possible products to you.  As we receive various awards or certification, we will publish these on our web site and on product specifications.


  • Is there any warranty on the Sun Lizard Unit?
    The PV Panel has a 10 year warranty
    The electronics and fans have a 2 year warranty


  • I want to make my home or building as green as possible, who else can I talk to for more advice? 
    Depending on which area you live in, you could contact your state environment department who can give you good, independent advice. 
    Federal contact or
    VIC contact Sustainability Victoria
    NSW contact Department of Water and Energy
    QLD contact Climate Smart QLD
    ACT contact Office of Sustainability
    SA contact Sustainable Living SA
    WA contact Sustainability
    TAS contact Environment Division


  • Architects & Recommendations
    While most architects and building designers are trying to incorporate energy efficiency and low impact into their designs, we highly recommend doing your own research before signing off on your building design.  There are many good web sites such as which can make sure you have a great home that is also energy efficient.
  • More information:
    If you need more information please mail or email us your question and your contact details.  We will reply as quickly as possible.

The Sun Lizard
the ABC's
"New Inventors"

To Sun Lizard inventor Colin Gillam explain how the Sun Lizard can work for you

Australia Orders Key Sun Lizard Investor To Leave Country


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