Protect Your Outdoor Awnings from Wear and Tear! Just Follow These Simple Steps
January 1, 2019
Outdoor awnings are made to last a lifetime under normal circumstances, and many people believe that they are maintenance-free. And, for the most part they are—with very little care or maintenance needed to keep them looking great every day.
There are, however, some simple steps you can take to keep outdoor awnings looking great day after day and year after year—and by performing them, your awnings will maintain their good looks in every weather condition and during every season.
Outdoor awnings don’t need much in the way of cleaning, as they are resistant to ground-in dirt. Plus, since they are off the ground and mounted on an angle, many types of debris will just fall off of them. However, there are a few things you can do to help keep your awnings looking great, and it won’t take much time or effort.
- Brushing—A good way to remove any dirt or debris, like leaves, small twigs, and branches, is by brushing. You can use a soft bristle brush for this, and if mounted on an extending handle (much like those made for RV units) you’ll be able to brush it from top to bottom any time you need to.
- Rinsing—Perhaps a better way to remove debris on an awning is by rinsing it off using a hose. You won’t have to reach upwards at all, just aim the hose stream at the top of the awning and gravity will pull the water back down, bringing dust, dirt, and debris with it. Simple, easy, and effective.
- Washing—If you really want to give your awning a good cleaning, then washing is the way to go. Just mix up a gentle dishwashing solution in a bucket, dip your soft bristle brush into the mix, and spread the soap and water onto the awning. Brush gently and rinse it off. You can also use an organic or natural dishwashing soap as a better environmental alternative.
Although the mechanism for retractable awnings is permanently lubricated at the factory, there may come a time when the joints or hinges begin to squeak. This is a normal occurrence, particularly if the awning has been exposed to harsh weather conditions.
If you do encounter squeaking, you can add some dry graphite lubrication at the point of the squeak. This will silence the problem and allow the retraction mechanism to work as well as it did when it was new.
When an awning gets wet, it needs to dry completely before either being retracted or put away. Although it is true that the water itself will not harm the awning material in any way, if retracted or put away when moist, the folds in the material won’t dry correctly. They will trap the moisture and the potential for mildew or mold growth becomes a possibility.
But if you always allow the awning to dry thoroughly, you’ll never have this problem, and once dry, it can be retracted or stored safely until needed again.
By following these simple steps, your awning will look great at all times of the year. But if you have any questions about awning care, maintenance, or cleaning, please contact The New Dorchester Awning Company. We are proud to be Boston’s awning company since 1901, serving the Cape Cod and New England area. As always, please contact us for a free awning quote.