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For homes with retractable awnings, regular maintenance is critical. This is particularly true in the winter months. When the temperatures begin to drop, it can be easy to forget about taking care of this part of a home. However, not taking the proper precautions can result in damage. The following are some tips to keep them in great shape during the winter.
Inspect for Mildew
A major issue for outdoor fabric surfaces is the build up of mildew. It is to be expected with retractable awnings since they are constantly exposed to the elements. It is important to identify mildew and clean it as soon as possible. Carefully inspect the fabric for any mildew stains or other discoloration.
Use the Proper Cleaners
Keeping retractable awnings clean is one of the easiest ways to ensure they last for years. Snow and rainwater can build up and cause mildew, so regular cleaning is key. However, it is important to use the right type of cleaner designed for outdoor surfaces in order to get it as clean as possible. Spray the inside and outside as it rolls to allow the cleaner to distribute properly along the fabric surface. Allow it to soak, and then spray it clean with a hose. Avoid scrubbing the surface as it can remove the water-resistant finish.
Check for Tears
Another thing to look for is a tear in the awning. Check the edges and seams to ensure there are no rips or tears anywhere in the fabric. If there is damage present, patch it with a kit that can be obtained from the manufacturer to prevent any further damage.
Consider Storing for the Winter
It may be beneficial to store retractable awnings for the winter to prevent mold or damage from snow and rainwater. For homeowners in particular cold climates, it is especially beneficial since they are likely to spend little time outdoors. If storing them is an option, be sure that it is completely dry to avoid any mold or mildew growth or other damage.
Storing them during the cold months can also prevent damage caused by animals. Small animals and birds may like to make the awning into their home for the winter, and this can often result in damage or stains.
Retractable awnings are a great addition to any home and are often a large investment. Keeping them in the best condition will yield many years of enjoyment. Wintertime is harsh on any outdoor surface but is particularly harmful to fabrics. Taking these steps can guarantee that the awnings will be highly useful for years to come.