An awning gives your storefront a friendly appearance while also providing an interesting alternative location for placing your business name signage. Awnings also help extend your business into the sidewalk traffic, since you can use the space beneath the awning to display merchandise, provide customer seating, or to house creative sidewalk signs. The following tips can help you maintain your awning.
Tip #1: Choose the right materials
Not all awning materials are created equally. If you live in an area with a dry or mild climate, one of the modern UV-resistant and weatherproof fabric awnings may be a good choice. In areas with heavy snow or rain, you may want to consider a metal awning, since it will be more durable and resistant against damage if it is kept painted. Vinyl awnings are another option that work well in some climates. Vinyl awnings are water resistant and can withstand some UV exposure, but they can begin to degrade or crack in extremely hot and dry conditions. You can look at awnings for sale in your area to see samples of the various materials.
Tip #2: Plan for bird issues
Awnings can attract birds, especially nesting sparrows and other songbirds. They often try to build nests in the shade beneath the awning, using the awning support framework to support their nest. This can lead to a dropping problem underneath the cover. Invest in a bird net that fits the bottom of the awning. This netting isn't very visible to passers-by, but it does prevent birds from accessing the framework beneath the awning.
Tip #3: Schedule regular cleanings
Bugs, dust, and dirt will all collect on your awning. You can extend the life of this investment by having it cleaned regularly. For regularly monthly cleaning, you should be able so simply hose it off on your own to remove the bulk of the dust. You should also plan to have it deep-cleaned by a professional a couple of times a year, such as in the spring and summer. Pressure washing is usually used on metal awnings, while careful scrubbing with a brush and a mild cleanser formulated for outdoor fabrics or vinyl is used on soft awning covers. You may even be able to remove these awning covers and take them in to a cleaner to have them properly washed.
Tip #4: Watch the weatherproofing
Finally, have your awnings resealed or painted as needed. Fabric awnings generally require sealing with a spray-on UV- and moisture-repelling treatment after each major cleaning. Metal awnings only require repainting when chips or scratches begin to appear on the surface. You can put off a full repainting by touching up minor damage on metal awnings promptly so they don't develop rust.
Talk to a sign company in your area such as Hightech Signs for more help with your awnings.