Why is cleaning my awning important?
Awnings get dirty! Whether for signage, marketing or as aesthetic additions to your home or business, the value derived from your awning is subject to how well you maintain it. Cleaning it regularly will extend the life and enhance the look of your awning. It will also help to protect it from the damaging effects of dirt, pollution, bird droppings and sun.
Cleaning is important to maintain the integrity of the awning fabric, seams and color. Applying protectant every 18 to 24 months and keeping a regular schedule will extend the life of your awning. A well-kept awning has a life-span of 8 years or more, whereas neglected awnings have a life expectancy of less than 5 years, making premature replacement an unnecessary expense.
Proper cleaning restores luster, adds life, and prevents permanent staining and discoloration. Neglect of awnings is by far the worst enemy. Many awning manufacturers require a certain chemical to be used in cleaning of their awnings and void warrantees or guarantees if the wrong one is used. Once the protective coating on fabric is destroyed, rapid deterioration and discoloration will occur from acid rain, bird droppings and normal U.V. light.
How often should I clean my awnings?
There are many factors that determine the frequency of your cleaning schedule. Our trained staff will consult with you at your location to help you decide what is best for you. Schedules can be set up for any frequency that meets your needs. We can also provide a one time cleaning.
Idaho Canvas will work with you to make a decision based on the following factors; your awning material type, color, previous cleaning record, age of your awning, bird problems and the traffic and pollution in your area.
Idaho Canvas is committed to help you develop a comprehensive package that will not only extend the life of your awnings but also meet your budget needs.
Does my awning have existing damage? How can I prevent this?
The key to stopping awning damage and premature aging is to keep it clean and use only professional awning cleaning services.
Types of damage commonly seen are; stretched fabric, rips or tears, weak seams, damage to plasticizers or weakened frames. Awnings can also be damaged by rusty frames, drips, roof run-off, bird droppings, trees rubbing on the fabric or other things attached to your awning. We recommend removing anything that is touching your awning that was not put there by your awning manufacturer.
Idaho Canvas will supply you with information that will help avoid future damage. 1-888-395-7999 - Toll Free
DO keep your awnings clean. This is the best protection again mildew. Even on mildew resistant fabric, mildew can grow on accumulated dirt or foreign materials which remain on top or bottom surface and eventually damage or stain the fabric. We cannot be responsible for such damage. Order Iosso Mold and Mildew stain remover
DO wash down your awnings. If they are vinyl coated, brush lightly with a cloth or soft brush. You can use a mild soap, but rinse thoroughly and immediately.
DO hose your awning with clean water occasionally, every month or so. We recommend that you do this on a hot sunny day.
DO keep the underside of your awnings clean, simply brush with a clean household broom.
DO keep tree limbs, shrubbery and vines away from the awnings, many brushes contain an acid which can be harmful to your awnings.
DO check the condition of awning frames, Rust is not likely to form, but if it should it might cause deterioration or staining of the fabric. Advise your awning dealer if framework needs attention
And Some Don'ts
DO NOT fold or roll the awning in cold temperatures.
DO NOT drag your awning across any abrasive surfaces, such as cement, asphalt.
DO NOT get insect spray on the fabric as some solutions may impair the water repellancy of the fabric and cause staining.
DO NOT allow water to collect on the awnings as it may cause stretching and staining.
DO NOT overlook small rips or tears. If a sharp object punctures the fabric, it can be expertly repaired.
DO NOT wash your awnings with a harsh or strong solution or scrub vigorously.
DO NOT force or yank your awnings when raising or lowering them. Do it gradually.
DO NOT store awnings when damp or wet. Mildew is a fabric's greatest foe and is caused by dampness. Mildew may grow on the surface of a damp awning and permanently stain the fabric. Order Iosso Mold and Mildew stain remover
DO NOT permit leaves, twigs, dirt, etc. to remain on your awnings as they might cause a staining of the fabric.
Care and Cleaning Instructions
Some of the most frequently asked questions about Sunbrella ® fabrics concern care and cleaning. The good news is that Sunbrella is designed to be easy to maintain. By following a few simple care and cleaning steps, the fabric will maintain its good looks for many years.
Sunbrella fabrics are made from 100 percent solution-dyed acrylic yarns. Solution-dying is the process of adding color to acrylic fibers during manufacturing while they are in a liquid state. This characteristic of Sunbrella fabrics is the key to locking in color, easy cleaning and long life.
Because Sunbrella fabrics are woven, they are also highly breathable, which is why they dry quickly with only air exposure. It's also important to know that Sunbrella fabrics are treated with a fluorocarbon finish, which enhances water repellency. This finish requires replenishment after vigorous cleaning.
Sunbrella fabrics will not support the growth of mildew, but dirt on the fabric can lead to mildew growth, which makes regular cleanings important. No set timetable exists for when fabric should be cleaned, and the local environment has a great deal to do with determining cleaning frequency. Cleaning is required less frequently in a dry environment than in a humid one with heavy foliage.
Sunbrella awning and marine fabrics carry a five-year limited warranty and Sunbrella furniture fabrics are warranted for three years. With proper care and cleaning, you can expect excellent service from Sunbrella fabrics far beyond warranty periods.
One of the best ways to keep Sunbrella fabrics looking good and to delay the need for deep or vigorous cleanings is to hose fabrics off on a monthly basis with clear water. This practice will help prevent dirt from becoming deeply imbedded in the fabric and eliminate the need for more frequent vigorous cleanings. In most environments, a thorough cleaning will be needed every two to three years.
When it's time for a thorough cleaning, Sunbrella fabrics can be cleaned while still on an awning frame or a boat or, size permitting, they can be removed for cleaning in a washing machine.
When cleaning Sunbrella fabrics, it is important to observe the following:
Always use a natural soap. Never detergent
Water should be cold to lukewarm. Never more than 100 degrees.
Air dry only. Never apply heat to Sunbrella fabrics.
If you are cleaning Sunbrella while still on a frame or on a boat, follow these simple steps:
Brush off loose dirt.
Prepare a cleaning mixture of water and mild, natural soap (no detergents).
Use a soft bristle brush to clean. Allow soap to soak in.
If stubborn stains persist, you can use a diluted chlorine bleach/soap mixture for spot cleaning of mildew, roof run-off and other similar stains.
Prepare a special cleaning mixture:
Four ounces (half cup) of chlorine bleach.
Two ounces (one-fourth cup) of natural soap.
One gallon of water.
Clean with soft bristle brush.
Allow mixture to soak for up to 20 minutes.
Air dry. Repeat if necessary.
If an awning or boat cover is suitable in size for a washing machine, these steps should be followed:
Use only natural soaps. No detergent. Wash and rinse in cold water. Air dry. Never put Sunbrella fabrics in your dryer
Re-treating the fabric
As part of the finishing process, Sunbrella fabrics are treated with a fluorocarbon finish, which enhances water repellency. This finish is designed to last for several years, but must be replenished after a thorough cleaning. Based on test results, Glen Raven recommends 303 High Tech Fabric Guard™ as the preferred re-treatment product for Sunbrella fabrics. Fabrics should be retreated after thorough cleaning or after five years of use.
Applying 303 High Tech Fabric Guard™ 303 should be applied to Sunbrella fabrics after each thorough cleaning, which typically removes the original fluorocarbon finish and reduces the fabric's water resistance.
After cleaning the fabric, allow it to air dry completely and then apply 303 in a thin, even coat. After allowing the first coat of 303 to air dry, apply a second thin, even coating of 303. Two light coatings are more effective in restoring fabric water resistance than a single heavy coating. The 15-ounce aerosol provides coverage of up to 50 square feet of lightweight fabric.
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