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    Retractable Patio & Deck Awnings

     

    Retractable patio awnings and deck awnings are designed for sun, UV, glare & heat protection, LIGHT rain & wind up to +-20 mph (when extended) and no higher. This product type is water RESISTANT, not WATERPROOF. For residential & commercial patios, decks, courtyards, restaurants, hotels, wedding events, nightclubs, pubs, swimming pools, hot tubs & open entertainment areas.

  • Retractable Patio Covers and Pergola Covers

    Retractable Patio Pergola Covers & Louver Roofs

    Most retractable patio covers and pergola covers are designed for sun, UV, glare & heat protection, HEAVY rain & HIGH winds up to 175+ mph/281+ km/hr. Systems & fabric are waterPROOF meaning no water enters. Used for residential, commercial, institutional & government patios, decks, courtyards, restaurants, hotels, wedding events, nightclubs, pubs, swimming pools, hot tubs.

  • retractable-window-awnings-keeping-a-house-cool

    Retractable Side Arm / Drop Arm Awnings

    Retractable canopy awnings are designed for sun, UV, glare, heat protection and LIGHT wind and LIGHT rain. Solution dyed acrylic fabric used on this product type is water RESISTANT. Can be wall mounted outside any commercial, governmental, institutional or residential window or door opening.

  • retractable-screens-controlling-room-light

    Retractable Screens

    Retractable screens are designed for sun, UV, glare, heat protection & LIGHT to MODERATE wind (depending on fabric & model used) and HEAVY rain (depending on fabric & model used). For residential, commercial, governmental and institutional applications, wall mounted OR mounted on to posts around the outside of a pavilion, pergola or gazebo. Fabric can be water RESISTANT.

  • retractable-canopies-providing-storefront-decoration

    Retractable Canopies

    Retractable canopies are designed for sun, UV, glare and heat protection, LIGHT wind and LIGHT rain. Solution dyed acrylic fabric used on this product type is water RESISTANT. Can be wall mounted outside any commercial, governmental, institutional or residential window or door opening.

  • free-standing-retractable-awnings

    Retractable Free Standing Awnings

    Most free standing retractable awnings are designed for sun, UV, glare & heat protection, HEAVY rain & HIGH winds up to 175+ mph/281+ km/hr. Systems & fabric are waterPROOF meaning no water enters. Free standing awnings are floor mounted and used for residential, commercial, institutional & government patios, decks, courtyards, restaurants, hotels, wedding events, nightclubs, pubs, swimming pools & hot tubs.

  • commercial-retractable-motorized-electric-pergola

    Retractable Electric & Motorized Awnings

    Electric & motorized retractable awnings with an optional wind, rain, sun and motion sensors are designed for sun, UV, glare, heat protection & for light to heavy wind (depending on fabric & model used) and light to heavy rain (depending on fabric & model used). Electric & motorized retractable awnings are used for residential, commercial, governmental and institutional applications. Fabric can be water resistant or waterproof (depending on fabric & model used).

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A Comparison of Fixed vs Retractable Awnings

The major difference between fixed and retractable awnings comes down to one word: movement. As the names imply, fixed awnings are frozen into a single position, while retractable awnings can be opened, closed, or stopped at any point in between.

This ability to move an awning gives retractable awnings significant flexibility, and this flexibility translates into some significant performance benefits.

Longer lifespan with the fabrics.

One of the most vulnerable elements in an awning is its fabric. The fabric (whether solution-dyed acrylic, PVC, mesh, or even cotton canvas) is simultaneously the most delicate part of the awning and the most exposed. Awning frames can be painted or powder-coated for additional protection against rust and UV damage, and are relatively resistant to daily damage. However, fabrics can tear in heavy winds, stretch as water pools, rub against the awning ribs and fray, and fade and become brittle in unrelenting sun and UV exposure.

Some of this can be mitigated by using quality fabrics, as we do with solution-dyed acrylics and PVC-based materials which are fade resistant. But the most effective way to protect the fabric is also the simplest -- roll it up. Retractable awnings roll up the fabric, so if the awning is not being used, the fabric isn’t exposed to wind, rain, snow, hail, or even sun and UV. An optional hood provides a cover for the fabric roller, preventing debris and water buildup which could further damage the fabric. This extends the lifetime of the fabric (and therefore the attractiveness of the awning) by years.

Longer lifespan with the frame.

The awning frames are overall sturdier than the fabric, but they are still not indestructible. Many types of awnings, like lateral arm, canopy, and drop screens, have no posts or supports, so when they are retracted, they are flat against the building and completely hidden.

Many of the frames are rated for 20mph winds or higher, so a lazy afternoon on the patio is possible even with a moderate wind. However, if the winds pick up or there is worse weather (snow, heavy rains, hail, or strong winds), then a fixed awning is just left out in the weather, leaving the fabric and the frame vulnerable to damage from wind gusts or the weight of precipitation. Retractable awnings, however, can be closed and protected, for a few minutes or days. Using sensors like anemometers and precipitation sensors can allow your awning to retract and be protected even if you are not there to close it yourself.

Improved energy efficiency.

Both fixed and retractable awnings provide substantial savings on air conditioning bills. Awnings block sunlight, which reduces the overall heat gain by as much as 77% and anywhere from 8 to 20 degrees (F). Depending on the window orientation and the length of summer, this can result in hundreds of dollars in energy savings annually.

The other side of energy savings, though, is winter, and this is where retractable awnings have a clear advantage. Blocking indoor heat gain is great in summer, but that’s the opposite of what you want in winter. Letting in sunlight and ambient heat reduced heating costs. With fixed awnings, that is not an option, but retractable awnings can be retracted throughout the winter, allowing in a maximum amount of light and ambient heat. This can be significant in northern climates.

Improved light management.

An important factor with awnings is (obviously) light management, but that does not necessarily mean blocking all light, all of the time. Light and weather are always changing, and there are a lot of factors that can affect light conditions:

  • Cloud cover

  • Haze

  • Fog

  • Angle of the sun, both seasonally and throughout the day

  • Available interior lighting

Retractable awnings can be adjusted to provide the appropriate amount of light and shade, both for improved comfort and for improved energy efficiency. Using ambient light rather than electric lights can impact energy consumption for large facilities -- and it can also significantly affect the mood and health of employees or guests in larger spaces, since natural light is linked with reduced stress and better moods.

Fixed awnings, on the other hand, block light at a specific angle, which could mean reducing available light unnecessarily or not being able to block light and glare with seasonal changes in the sun’s position.

To see the entire comparison scroll left to right and top to bottom

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  Fixed Retractable
Sun  / Heat
  • Blocks light and heat gain by up to 77% (for western facing windows).

  • Reduces cooling costs.

  • Increases heating costs in winter, since the awning blocks passive heat gain.

  • Blocks light and heat gain by up to 77% (for western facing windows).

  • Reduces cooling costs.

  • Preserves heating costs in winter, since the awning can be retracted to allow passive heat gain.

Winter
  • Stays open.

  • Continued UV damage to fabric.

  • Exposure to snow, ice, and other winter weather.

  • Increases heating costs in winter, since the awning blocks passive heat gain.

  • Reduces natural lighting.

  • Retracted for maximum protection.

  • Prevents UV damage to fabric, which extends life.

  • Minimizes exposure to snow, ice, and other winter weather for both the fabric and frame.

  • Maintains heating costs in winter, since the awning is retracted to allow passive heat gain.

  • Allows natural lighting.

Severe Weather
  • Stays open in all weather.

  • Susceptible to damage in storms or from the weight of snow, hail, or rain.

  • Closes for maximum protection.

  • Can use wind and precipitation sensors to automatically retract and reopen.

  • Timers, remotes, and mobile apps can be used to manage awnings.

Light
  • Blocks light to reduce glare and UV rays.

  • Reduces natural lighting on cloudy or dark days.

  • Increases energy consumption for artificial lighting on cloudy days and in winter.

  • Blocks light to reduce glare and UV rays.

  • Allows natural lighting on cloudy or dark days.

  • Maintains energy consumption by allowing passive, natural lighting on cloudy days and in winter.

Canopy Material
  • Frequently natural fiber (such as cotton) or vinyl, which are vulnerable to fading and UV damage.

  • Exposed to additional wear because it is permanently open.

  • Vulnerable to mildew.

  • Expected lifespan around 2-3 years.

  • Solution-dyed acrylics have the pigment imbued in the manufacturing, for maximum resistance to fading.

  • Acrylic fabrics are engineered for marine use and so are durable in sun exposure and to salt spray and other irritants.

  • Retracting during winter and when not in use reduces damage from UV rays, wind, and other elements.

  • Mildew resistant.

  • 10-year warranty, and expected lifetime of 12-15 years.

  • Aluminium louvres can be adjusted to provide additional sun protection and protection from rain, hail, or snow.

  • Have adjustable tilts at every angle between fully open and fully closed.

  • Are rust-resistant.

  • Aluminium louvres have an expected lifespan of 12-15 years.

Threading / Seams
  • Polyester or cotton threads are most common.

  • The expected lifespan is 2-3 years.

  • PVC fabrics are heat sealed, which prevents separation.

  • Solution-dyed acrylics are sewn with GORE Tenara thread, which is UV resistant, mildew-resistant, and withstands exposure to salt water, acid, temperature changes, and water.

Frames
  • Most commonly steel, which have a lifespan of 2-3 years.
  • Extruded aluminum, which is naturally rust-resistant.

  • Powder-coated, which creates a bond stronger than painting and provides additional protection.

  • 25-year, non-prorated warranty on all frames

Movement, Pitch, and Position
  • Permanently open.

  • Open at a fixed angle.

  • Difficult to reposition or to move to a different location.

  • Can be unattractive as the awning ages or as the landscape design changes.

  • Can be almost invisible when retracted, blending into the lines of the structure.

  • Can be fully opened or stopped at any intermediate point for precise shade coverage.

  • Can have an adjustable angle, to provide additional shade coverage or to allow runoff in light rain.

  • Possible to reposition or move to a different location.

  • When retracted, does not clash with landscaping or design.