Best Materials for Outdoor Awnings
Selecting the right material for outdoor awnings depends on factors such as durability, costs and resilience. The structures are installed for the purpose of protection against the harsh weather conditions as well as to improve energy efficiency. In the past, the main material used was cotton canvas but its popularity has reduced significantly due to the susceptibility to mould growth when exposed to moist environments. Over the years, the industry has evolved and now there are many quality materials to consider when choosing outdoor awnings.
Metal awnings are not per se new but the use has become more extensive in the last few years. The main metals used are steel, aluminium and copper. These materials are able to withstand extreme weather quite well and they require little maintenance. Aluminium is a common choice for most homeowners since it is cheaper than the alternatives. Unfortunately, it easily sustains dents and this affects the aesthetic value. Copper awnings are not widely used because of the expense but they are very durable, visually pleasing and resistant to eventual degradation. The steel material is also a good choice though the initial cost is also high. The strong build ensures that the awnings have resistance against denting and an extended lifespan. However, some maintenance work is necessary to prevent rusting.
Synthetic fabrics are typically used in making awnings but they are coated to improve the strength of the structure. Polyester is one of the most popular choices in the current market and the products are usually coated with vinyl or acrylic. Acrylic acts as a barrier for moisture and also reduces the susceptibility of the base fabrics to the sun and subsequent fading. Moreover, the acrylic material is available as an upscale independent fabric. It is strong and has the aesthetics of cotton, without the vulnerability to mould and moisture retention. Vinyl is an ideal compound for coating fabrics that require translucency to achieve illumination. It is lighter than acrylic but it offers UV protection and effectively resists the growth of mould and mildew.
The fibreglass material is light compared to metals. The high energy efficiency as well as the solid build has contributed to its popularity. Desirable colours are moulded into the material which limits maintenance requirements but reduces style flexibility. Depending on preference, the fibreglass awnings can either be translucent or opaque. The only drawback is that extreme temperatures may cause brittleness which will lead to cracking or breakage. Ensure that you get high quality materials to mitigate this risk.
For more information about outdoor awnings, check out companies such as Blind Outlet.