New England communities take great pride in the rich historical background of their towns. For businesses and residential neighborhoods, awnings offer a wonderful way to add a touch of charm that reflects the history behind their community while also providing shade. Not only are awnings an effective way to add an attractive shade to a building, but they can also substantially reduce energy costs. According to the U.S. Energy Department, awnings can reduce solar heat by as much as 77 percent depending upon the window’s placement. Here, is an overview of the two most common retractable awnings so that you can begin to enjoy the aesthetic and energy-saving benefits of this traditional window treatment.
Lateral Arm Awning
Often referred to as a deck or patio awning, a lateral arm awning is very similar to the traditional store-front awnings that were used throughout history in New England towns. A lateral arm awning is generally larger than a pivot arm awning and can cover between 18 to 30 feet of area. While many lateral arm awnings offer hand-cranked varieties, most people opt for ones that are motorized and can be controlled using home automation.
Pivot Arm Awning
The pivot arm awning is another retractable awning type that maintains the traditional look that everyone loves. These are meant to be used in windows and consist of a spring-loaded pivoting arm that extends and retracts. Due to the many options for controls, such as motors or exterior ropes, this type of awning is also ideal for second-story windows.
Choosing the Right One
The best type of retractable awning for a building will depend upon several different factors. For large outdoor areas, a lateral arm awning is best. Exterior windows can benefit from the conveniences offered by pivot arms that can be opened and closed from both inside and out. Both types of awnings offer manual and motorized options that can make cooling a building simple while creating a customized look that enhances the beauty of New England towns.