The porch is becoming something of a lost feature in many homes. Now, the patio and patio living are becoming the new wave in home designs and trends. No matter what you call your space, the addition of one or more porch awnings will surely make that space a more enjoyable area to lounge in. There was a time when you could find an outdoor swing hanging from the front porch of most every home on the block. No matter that this was several decades ago, the neighborly image is still alive and well in many communities throughout the country.
What the porch offers is a place to recount the days events, share time with friends or family and just enjoy a little down time away from the hussle and bussle of daily life. Where you might consider a covered patio a more effective use of your home’s space or layout, the porch offers a more open feeling. It can provide a more inviting place to share a cool drink and a nice conversation or good book.
So, with this in mind, how do you go about shading it to keep it everything you’d like it to be? Well, the first thing to consider is the size of your porch area. Modern front porch designs include many features and furniture items that just didn’t exist many years ago. This will affect the size and style of the awning you select.
If you’re talking about using this type of awning for a smaller space, then a manually operated awning will work just fine. These roll up awnings are made to easily retract, but the process can get cumbersome for some individuals and for certain applications. For larger or multiple areas, you might look into getting a motorized retractable awning. These work in the same fashion as the manual ones, they are just much more simple to operate.
Patio Awning Materials and Designs
Your awnings will consist of several parts; the framework and the fabric material itself. Most cases and moving parts are made of more durable and lightweight metals. An aluminum porch awning is probably the most common type of metal used. The fabric has come a long was as well. While you can still find canvas, it is more common to find vinyl awnings in various printed materials now. There have been advances made in the way that these fibers are spun and colored so that fading due to ultraviolet (UV) exposure has been minimized. In addition to their durability, they also keep their color, as fading is also lessened by this process. Because of the various patterns and colors available in today’s marketplace, this is welcomed news to homeowners looking to maintain that new look.
This leads to another topic, maintenance of your garden awnings. Basically, you can follow the guidelines as set forth from the manufacturer of your particular awning set. You may need to lube or oil certain moving parts. The weather and conditions in your particular zone may necessitate unique cleaning instructions. Cleaning the awning material itself is fairly straightforward.
Cleaning your patio awning is as simple as spraying with your hose and using a mild detergent solution. You can also hand wash with a non-abrasive cloth and mild detergent, then wiped clean with a dry cloth. The soap residue may interfere with the moving parts of your awning, so you’ll want to ensure that you clean them thoroughly. This alone should keep your awnings functioning well for years to come.
As you shop for these awnings for home, consider the costs for the various types we’ve discussed weighed against the maintenance and other aspects of using your patio space. If you spend much time outdoors, then it is certainly a wise idea to invest in some quality porch awnings.