Anything that is exposed to the elements will need to be maintained on a regular basis, to ensure that it works correctly when the time comes. If you have awnings over your windows or patio area, you need to keep them clean and test them regularly so you can find problems before they malfunction. Here are five tips for maintaining your awnings.
Check Them Regularly
During the fall and winter months, your awnings will not get as much use as they do in the summer, so you will need to check them frequently for problems. Test the folding arms on your awnings periodically to ensure there is no problem with them. Look for loose screws or rust on the arms and housing that could cause problems when awning season comes around. You can tighten loose screws yourself, and clean rust with either a chemical rust remover, or by carefully scraping it off if necessary.
Wash Your Awnings
During the summer months when you are frequently using awnings to block the sun from shining into windows, you will want to wash them to remove dirt and debris that can get blown onto them. You can clean folding arm awnings by using a hose to spray them lightly, to remove dirt, leaves and other debris. If more cleaning is needed, lightly sponge them clean and then rinse with a hose to remove all the soap. Allow the fabric to dry completely before putting the awning away.
When you wash your awnings, wipe down all the hardware to make sure it doesn’t corrode, although most systems are made with materials that don’t corrode. Remove any debris, like leaves or sticks, that accidentally gets into the cassette and could prevent it from working correctly. If you notice any rust spots on the hardware, clean it off, and use an anti-corrosion agent on those parts to protect them.
Test Motorised Awnings
If your awnings are motorised, test the motor during the off-season to ensure it is functioning properly. You don’t want to let it be dormant all fall and winter, then find that something is wrong with the motor when you try to use it for the first time in the summer. Moisture and humidity can cause problems with a motor, so you need to check it on occasion to make sure it works. If there are problems, contact a technician from the company you bought the awnings from for repairs.
Protect Them from Weather
If the weather takes a turn for the worse and it starts to get windy, roll up your awnings so they are not damaged. Roll them up before it begins to rain as well, because you don’t want to put them away when they are wet. By protecting them from stormy, windy weather, they will last longer.
If you take care of your awnings, they will look nice and operate efficiently for several years to help keep your home and outdoor spaces cooler.