Installing retractable awnings

 


Retractable awnings are more popular than ever, providing the occupants of the house with the choice between sitting in the gentle winter sun and getting much needed relief from the damaging UV rays of the summer sun. In addition to provide shade for windows, awnings are increasingly utilised for creating shade in popular outdoor areas.

This post discusses the advantages of retractable awnings and finishes up with a guide on how to install them.

Save on cooling costs

When purchasing quality awnings, you can improve your energy efficiency by installing them in the right location. The best fabric awnings will block a minimum of 99% of UV rays. Installing the awnings in areas where you tend to get a lot of sunshine during the hottest part of the day can save you a lot of energy from reducing the need of cooling the house.

Options

Installing retractable awnings over your favourite outdoor area can give you the option of enjoying the outdoors on your terms, regardless of the weather. Water-proof awnings lets you enjoy your outdoor meal even if interrupted by a pesky shower. You also get the choice of whether you want to enjoy the sunshine or avoid it completely when sitting outside.

Strong winds

Different styles and awnings can tolerate different wind forces, though the advantages of retractable awnings provide you with the option of winding them all the way in. They will therefore be safe from gale force winds, as opposed to other shade structures such as shade sails which will need to be taken down completely.

Negatives

Fabric stationed out in the weather can unfortunately get damaged and stained by the elements, and can easily get dirty. It can be difficult to clean dust bird droppings from the top of the awnings. When searching for awnings, ensure that the fabric has been treated with mould and mildew repellents. UV radiation can also cause discoloration of the fabric if exposed to it over a substantial amount of time.

Installing retractable awnings

All awnings are different, and you need to consult the instruction manual for specific instructions. However, there are some common elements to installing awnings. Be aware that installing the awnings is a two person job.

Install the brackets

First you need to install the brackets to the house. Choose the place you want to install the awnings, and evaluate what material you are fixing the brackets to. Create a level line – a chalk line will be of great benefit to ensure all the brackets will be fixed in the right position. Space out the brackets according to the instruction manual or by comparing it to the frame of the awnings. Use a level to ensure you fix the brackets upright in a level position.

Fixing into timber is pretty straightforward, though you should pre drill the holes with a smaller drill bit than the width of your screws. When fixing into bricks, you will need to drill holes the size of the plugs and then fix the brackets to the plugs.

Attach the awnings

You will need at least two ladders, as the awnings will need to be lifted by two people to slot into the brackets. Lock the frame into position by fastening the awnings by bolts or other fittings as described in your instruction manual.

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