Brittany Hammond Awning November 08th, 2019 - 06:01:50
Retractable awnings are getting attention. From green initiatives to historical renovations to downtown retail centers, property owners are hearing that retractable awnings are a terrific, inexpensive method to save money on energy and create a striking exterior feature. The rise in popularity for retractable awnings in the US means that there is a flood of new retractable awning options available, both in new styles and in new companies. Its tempting to look for the best deal alone, but there is such a variance in quality that customers can end up losing much more with short-lived and poor-performing awnings than they save upfront. It is possible to ascertain the quality of a retractable awning in a surprisingly succinct way: find out where it was made.
Other retractable awning features impact how well the awning wears, and, therefore, how easy it is to maintain: Electro-statically powder-coated aluminum frames to resist corrosion and chipping Sealed and self-lubricating retractable awning motors Weather-sealed wind, motion, rain, and sun sensors and other accessories Stainless-steel mounting hardware to prevent staining or bleeding from rust Kevlar® brand straps in the arms, not steel cables which will rust TÜV product approved and Eurolab certified frames These components make the average lifetime of a retractable awning 12-15 years for fabric and 25 years for the frame - almost five times longer than most fixed awnings or canopies, and without the need to professional cleaning or seasonal storage problems. With retractable awnings, the keyword for maintenance is effortless.
There are dozens of styles of retractable awnings, determined mainly by the frame shape: Lateral arm awning - the most common, and oldest, retractable awning style, consisting simply of two or more arms, the front bar, mounting bar and the fabric. This is the most popular style for homes and commercial buildings; this is also the most scalable style, extending (projecting) as far as 17 feet without external supports. Dome - an awning with curved ribs, which forms a rounded shape when fully extended; these tend to have a significantly shorter extension (projection) than lateral arm awnings, extending only about five feet out maximum from the mount point. An elongated dome can have a longer projection than a standard dome style, almost double. Dome awnings are common for commercial properties and for window and door awnings. Drop screen - a kind of retractable awning which is mounted vertically so it extends downward. This style of awning has the mounting bar and fabric, but no arms since it simply "drops" down. This is mainly used to screen patios, gazebos, and other outdoor areas from glare, heat, rain, UV rays, direct sun, mosquitoes, and pollen.
One important note for drop screens: not every manufacturer has a do-it-yourself style, so make sure you dont need a contractor before ordering the screen. A retractable awning installation is slightly more complicated than a screen installation, so follow the manufacturers instructions:1. Locate the bricks, rafters, studs, or joists to which to mount the awning.2. Install a pressure-treated board at the install location if mounting onto siding. It is extremely important that the awning be mounted on a flat, level surface, which isnt always possible with siding, shingles, and brick. 3. Install the mounting brackets, with the end brackets about three inches inside the edge of the awning and the other brackets evenly spaced between them. The number of mounting brackets depends on the width and projection of the specific retractable awning. 4. Install and attach the optional hood about 1 inch above awning location. 5. Lift the retractable awning, and insert it in the mounting brackets.6. Tighten the retaining bolts.
That is starting to change, though. More and more American consumers are asking about vibrant colors or patterns - like florals and even paisleys - when they look at awning fabrics, and more exotic designs are starting to come over from Europe, at least for high-end use. As energy efficiency becomes more common, it could become more natural to look for stylish, as well as functional, solutions, which will broaden the retractable awning market even more. What the Future Holds As energy efficiency continues to be a growing issue for American homeowners, retractable awnings will be a new opportunity to explore. Based on the experiences and widespread effectiveness observed in Europe, there are exciting changes in store for American markets in the next few years: new architectural design integration with new construction, wildly expanding fabric choices and styles, new retractable awning designs, and natural energy efficiency.
Also, retractable awnings have financial benefits over fixed awnings that make them a tempting solution: Retractable awnings are overall less expensive than fixed awnings to install, and they dont require a contractor. Retractable awnings are about a quarter to a third of the cost of permanent construction to cover and utilize the same square footage. Because many styles of retractable awning arms are spring-loaded, there are no support posts to install, to block the view from under the awning, or to act as a potential hazard for children and pets. They require virtually no maintenance, not even mandatory cleaning.Capital Improvement Advantage Retractable awnings have interesting ways of saving a business money: o Direct energy cost savings. Sun protection systems cut heat buildup in a room as much as 77%, translating into a direct utility bill savings of up to 25%. "Dual use" as signage and promotion. Business names, logos, and telephone numbers can be printed on the awning, which saves money on constructing and designing separate signs.