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Sonya Awning April 06th, 2018 - 11:24:57
The urge to create something new and eye-catching on the blank slate of a home is powerful. As is the urge to save some money and maximize ones efforts. Whether its a change to landscaping, a roof garden, or a casual seating area for customers, retractable awnings or drop screens are an ideal project for do-it-yourselfers because they make a very dramatic difference with relatively little effort. The Planning Stage A major part of installing a retractable awning is finding the perfect place to install it. Retractable awnings are much easier to install than fixed awnings or canopies because they are only mounted on a wall - no need to dig post holes or put in a foundation or grounding - so they can be installed over existing pavements, patios, decks, hot tubs, and gazebos, as well as doors and windows. Retractable awnings are suited to any location where sun, glare, UV rays, or light rain protection is required.
There are dozens of styles of retractable awnings, determined mainly by the frame shape: Lateral arm awning - the most common, and oldest, retractable awning style, consisting simply of two or more arms, the front bar, mounting bar and the fabric. This is the most popular style for homes and commercial buildings; this is also the most scalable style, extending (projecting) as far as 17 feet without external supports. Dome - an awning with curved ribs, which forms a rounded shape when fully extended; these tend to have a significantly shorter extension (projection) than lateral arm awnings, extending only about five feet out maximum from the mount point. An elongated dome can have a longer projection than a standard dome style, almost double. Dome awnings are common for commercial properties and for window and door awnings. Drop screen - a kind of retractable awning which is mounted vertically so it extends downward. This style of awning has the mounting bar and fabric, but no arms since it simply "drops" down. This is mainly used to screen patios, gazebos, and other outdoor areas from glare, heat, rain, UV rays, direct sun, mosquitoes, and pollen.
Window Awnings are available in traditional and contemporary styles. Traditional style window awnings have sides that will give you more sun protections than awnings without sides. Awnings with sides are especially needed for East and West facing windows. Spear Window Awnings are made with wrought iron frames with spear finials. Spear Awnings look great on adobe and more modern homes. Drop arm Awnings for windows roll up on a roller tube and can be motorized. Drop Arm Awnings with motors are convenient for second story windows so they can be retracted easily from indoors. Porch Awnings around the perimeter of your porch adds privacy and protection. Porch Awnings can keep your porch cool will protecting it from rain and the sun. You can use Window Awnings around a porch or Canvas Porch Roller Curtains which will can roll up and down with a simple rope and pulley system. Porch Valances are also a popular decorative addition to porches. These Canvas Valances are for decorative purposes but do not have much sun protection because they are a small accent to a porch. They are 12" - 14" tall and wrap around a porch to add color and will soften the hard lines of a porch. They are especially popular on coastal homes on the East coast.
That is starting to change, though. More and more American consumers are asking about vibrant colors or patterns - like florals and even paisleys - when they look at awning fabrics, and more exotic designs are starting to come over from Europe, at least for high-end use. As energy efficiency becomes more common, it could become more natural to look for stylish, as well as functional, solutions, which will broaden the retractable awning market even more. What the Future Holds As energy efficiency continues to be a growing issue for American homeowners, retractable awnings will be a new opportunity to explore. Based on the experiences and widespread effectiveness observed in Europe, there are exciting changes in store for American markets in the next few years: new architectural design integration with new construction, wildly expanding fabric choices and styles, new retractable awning designs, and natural energy efficiency.