Patio Awnings

Awnings can make your patio useable in winter

When we think about using retractable awnings on the outside of a house or bungalow we usually think about using them to provide shade from the sun especially if the property is south facing, but many people do not realise that an awning can also be used to provide shelter from the rain. If used in this way, having a retractable awning can make the patio area of the garden useable all year round making entertaining outside possible throughout the year not just in summer. In fact, holding an outdoor party in the autumn or winter months can be a real boost at what can be a gloomy time of the year for many.

If you think that you will want to use a retractable awning throughout the year it is important that you choose the correct awning because not all awning fabrics are completely waterproof. To be fair, most awning fabrics are water resistant so a brief spell of rain will not permeate the awning but in order to use it during rainy periods it is vital that it is completely waterproof. Of course, if there is a large amount of rain, care will need to be taken that rainwater does not pool on the awning putting undue strain on the fabric and fittings. If the awning is fitted correctly there should be a sufficiently sloped fall on the awning so that rainwater can run off and therefore does not pool on the awning fabric.

The frames and fittings of the awning are usually powder-coated to protect them from the elements, and they should give many years of use before they start to show signs of wear and tear. If they do start to show signs of wear or begin to be difficult to open or close with the winding mechanism or with the motorised retraction it is a good idea to check them and see whether the moving parts need greasing or whether areas of rust need to be treated and repainted. It is advisable to change the awning fabric every few years as inevitably the waterproof quality of the fabric will deteriorate over time. Many companies sell the awning fabric separately so that customers do not have to replace the whole awning when just the fabric is worn or faded and can simply slide out the old fabric and slide in the new. If this is something that you are unable to do then the company who you purchased the retractable awning from often provide a service where they will check the awning and replace any worn parts for you.