The Do’s and Don’ts of Having a Retractable Awning at Home

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A retractable awning for your home doesn’t take a lot of maintenance to keep it in great shape, but there a few things to keep in mind. Occasional cleaning and protecting the fabric cover as well as the frame are a few of the items you should be aware of.

The DO's

  • DO use your retractable awning for cooling shade on your patio or deck
  • DO use your awning to add extra living and recreational area to your home
  • DO consider purchasing an extra remote control, so you have a backup
  • DO make sure that everyone knows how to open and close the retractable awning
  • DO brush loose debris off the top and bottom of the fabric
  • DO clean your awning once a year or once a month if you live near saltwater
  • DO clean your awning with a hose, then a soft brush in mild dish detergent and water and rinse it again
  • DO keep plants and shrubs away from your awning’s outdoor space because some contain an acid that damages the fabric
  • DO observe your awning routinely for rust or slices in the fabric and make repairs immediately before they ruin the entire system
  • DO remove the valance before winter storage
  • DO remember to retract a manual awning one-quarter of a turn on the handle to keep tension on the fabric and allow the arms to flex in the wind
  • DO use industry-approved lights for your retractable awning
  • DO remove the valance from your awning before winter storage
  • DO understand that warranties don’t cover weather-related damages
  • DO make certain your awning fabric rolls from the top of the tube for good awning care

The DON'Ts

  • DON’T overextend your awning as there should be a small gap in the center of the arms
  • DON’T leave your awning extended if there are no people outside
  • DON’T use heaters and lights near the fabric unless they are approved
  • DON’T hang plants, speakers, or fans from the frame unless they are approved for use
  • DON’T extend your awning in strong wind, snow or rain, or inclement weather
  • DON’T let water build up on the fabric because it will add weight and strain the opening and closing components
  • DON’T allow mildew to grow on your awning
    Don’t drag or fold your awning when you take it down for storage
  • DON’T use harsh chemical cleaners on the fabric
  • DON’T allow a wet awning to dry in the cassette
  • DON’T use fires or outdoor kitchens under your awning
  • DON’T overuse the electric motor continuously
  • DON’T remove a wind or rain sensor or your awning won’t work
  • DON’T spray insect repellant on your awning because it may reduce water and mildew resistance and cause stains
  • DON’T continue to use a damaged awning

These simple tips on using and maintaining your retractable awning will help you to keep your investment for years to come. All awnings are all-weather protection and stylish when they are installed professionally and cared for properly. At Sunshades of Pennsylvania, we have over 30 years of fabricating and installing superior awnings with commercial-grade products. If you have any further questions about using or maintaining your awning, contact us today.

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