16 August 2022

Awning Cleaning: 5 Tips to Preserve the Fabric

Pierre Trudeau

At the end of the fall, many patio owners look for tips to clean their custom awning. Look no further: our specialists are pleased to share their expertise with you.

Why should you clean your awning?

Have you chosen a custom awning? Whether you are the owner of a fixed patio awning or a retractable awning, cleaning is a necessary step at the end of the season. However, even if you have a 4-season awning, it’s necessary to clean your canvas from time to time, if only to ensure its longevity.

Custom awnings are investments. Although they are more durable than awnings found at big box stores, it’s still necessary to care for them.

Before you think about rolling up your retractable shelter or taking down your fixed patio awning, consider doing a thorough cleaning. It would be a shame to store your awning for the winter only to realize next season that its condition has deteriorated.

To preserve the quality of your canvases as long as possible, here are 5 pieces of sound advice from our specialists.

1. First step before cleaning your awning: the inspection

When the cold season comes around and it’s time to put away your outdoor layout, the inspection should be the first step on your list. But how do you conduct a good inspection of your awning? Here are the steps to follow.

  • Brief observation of the canvas: Start by looking at your canvas to see if there are any holes, stains, or any other element that could damage it. If the leaves have fallen, look for branches on the roof of your awning. These will obviously have to be removed during the cleaning.
  • Careful observation: Spider webs, insects, and seams are also elements to be inspected when checking the condition of your canvas. Take the time to check the seams, and note the ones that seem damaged. Don’t neglect any detail.

Once the inspection has been completed, if you have found any stains, cobwebs, or insects on your canvas, keep them in mind for the cleaning. The canvas is durable, but not invincible. Cleaning your awning and removing these stains and unwanted items is the best way to ensure that your investment has a long lifespan.

You should also consult a team of specialists if you noticed any seam or hole repairs to be performed.

The different ways to clean your awning

If you are a patio owner who is wondering how to clean your canvas awning, here are 2 proven methods. Although the basic cleaning is the most important, don’t neglect to do some awning cleaning with the right awning cleaners here and there. This will help you preserve the lifespan of your investment.

2. Regular cleaning

Besides the end-of-season cleaning, regular cleaning is a good way to preserve your canvases. But what is regular cleaning, exactly?

According to some awning manufacturers, it’s simply a matter of hosing down your canvas on a hot, dry day, once a month. This will help prevent dirt from becoming embedded in the fabric and making the cleaning more difficult at the end of the season.

In addition, without embedded dust and debris, the canvas is less at risk of being damaged or weakened. During the summer, it is therefore advisable to choose a nice summer day to hose down your canvases and give them time to dry in the open air.

If you don’t have time to do this type of cleaning, you should still consider sweeping here and there to remove insects. There is nothing more unpleasant than an 8-legged visitor walking on the salad when you are entertaining guests. Insects can also cause damage. If not for discomfort, inspect and sweep the awning to prevent damage.

In addition to regular cleaning, there are also two other types of cleaning: basic and intensive cleaning. Discover them below.

3. Basic cleaning

Basic cleaning is a type of cleaning that should be done once or twice a year: when you are about to put up the awning and when you are ready to take it down. This cleaning should also be done after conducting a visual inspection of your awning.

During this cleaning, you should therefore:

  • Remove the spider webs and insects using a broom
  • Remove the branches, leaves, and debris found on the canvas
  • Clean the stains with hot water and mild soap

In case of a stubborn stain, it is recommended not to scrub excessively. Instead, leave your canvas soaking in the solution and try again later. You can use a soft-bristled brush, but nothing too aggressive, because you could damage your canvas.

Much like the regular cleaning, choose a nice day to do your basic cleaning. Leave time for the canvas to dry completely before rolling it up and storing it.

4. Intensive awning cleaning

Although we don’t recommend this method for cleaning your custom awning, it is also possible to do an intensive cleaning. Acrylic awnings don’t promote the appearance of mould, but the elements on its surface such as soil, leaves, and insects might.

For stubborn stains and mould, and if your canvas is light-coloured, you can prepare a solution of bleach, soap, and warm water (½ cup of bleach for ¼ cup of soap and 1 gallon of water). We don’t recommend this technique for dark or coloured awnings, because you risk discolouring the canvas.

This technique should only be used as a last resort, since bleach can damage your canvas. If the stains don’t disappear with the soft-bristled brush and soapy water, we recommend calling on a specialized company instead, such as Groupe Bellon Prestige. Our awning experts will know how to make your awning canvas look great again without damaging it.

Cleaning your awning intensively is recommended every 5 years to ensure the cleanliness of the canvas. Entrust your awning to the professional cleaning service of Groupe Bellon Prestige. We have quality cleaning products that will guarantee a flawless result. Our team can also take care of the waterproofing of your canvas along with the cleaning.

5. After the cleaning: storage

No matter how well you clean it, if you don’t store it properly, the canvas will be damaged. Although storage isn’t part of a cleaning routine, it’s just as important, if not more so.

Don’t make the mistake of rolling up your awning and putting it to sleep in the darkness, humidity, and cold of a shed in the winter. The moisture can penetrate the fabric of your canvas and damage it.

In addition, you might find unexpected surprises on your awning in the spring, such as insects or unpleasant odours. Rodents also tend to find these places very pleasant to make their nests in the winter.

Ideally, you should store your awning in a dry, heated, and secure location. If you don’t have such a space at home, you can entrust your canvas to Groupe Bellon Prestige. We have premises dedicated exclusively to awning storage at our 35,000-square-foot factory. Our storage service is therefore a great way to ensure the longevity of your canvas.

Awning cleaning for trailers

Cleaning your trailer awning may seem complicated, but there are many cleaning methods that you can use.

Your awning offers you a shaded area to protect you from the sun. When it is equipped with the right accessories, it also protects you from the elements. However, like any awning, it is vulnerable to dirt, debris from trees, rain, and insects. The fabric isn’t any more resistant on a trailer than it is on your awning at home.

Knowing how to wash your trailer awning is therefore necessary to ensure that it will last. Here are 5 additional tips to clean your trailer awning and keep it looking like new.

How to clean your trailer awning in 5 steps and 5 minutes of effort

For a fast and effective trailer awning cleaning, here is our 5-minute method:

  1. Mix warm water and dish soap in a bucket and use a garden sprayer.
  2. Spray this mixture on the surface of your awning that is not exposed to the sun.
  3. Roll up your awning and let the product work for at least an hour. Let it work longer if the awning is very dirty.
  4. After the hour is up, use a watering can and rinse your canvas thoroughly. Most if not all of the debris should have been removed.
  5. Let the canvas dry before rolling it up again.

Entrust the cleaning to a team of specialists

The best way to clean your awning will always be to entrust the cleaning to experts. Why? Because in addition to cleaning it, they will inspect the canvas for weaknesses, and they can offer you repairs or maintenance to refurbish it.

If you have any questions about awning cleaning or our services, contact us. Groupe Bellon Prestige is proud to help patio owners enjoy life without fear of the elements by offering custom products.

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