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Awning Maintenance Tips

This section should answer most of your questions about awning maintenance, awning service, awning repair and awning care. However, please never hesitate to contact us for additional advice about awning maintenance and cleaning fabric awnings, etc…   

Your Aristocrat shade product has been carefully made by the team at Craft-Bilt Manufacturing Company in Souderton, Pennsylvania. They are proud of their attention to detail, and they work hard to make sure you will be 100% satisfied with the strength and quality of our materials. They hope you will tell your neighbors and friends about Absolute Awnings. Thank you again for your confidence in them. They know you will enjoy becoming "their partner in shading the planet!”, caring for your dyed acrylic fabric, vinyl laminated fabric and PVC coated polyester fabric. 

Awnings, shades, and canopies are made with your choice of 100% solution dyed acrylic fabric, vinyl laminated 100% polyester fabric, or PVC coated polyester fabric. All of their fabrics are manufactured under the highest standards of quality and precision and are guaranteed for a period of five years against mildew, rot, and excessive fading. 

They take extreme care when they cut, sew, assemble, and ship your awning, canopy and shades. Suburban devotes great care to providing a trouble free installation. If you notice some variation in the properties of the fabric, please be assured that such variations do not affect the effectiveness, durability, value, warranty, or the ability to use the product.

Light Discoloration and Dimpling  

If the fabric has been folded or gathered in order for proper sewing or assembly to occur, you might see very light lines or indistinct marbling. This may be more noticeable on solid-colored fabrics and more obvious in bright sunlight. This is called "crazing” and does not affect the quality or durability.  

The nature of 100% woven water repellent acrylic shade fabric accepts slight irregularities, such as fabric "slubs” and color shading as being distinctive characteristics of the craft industry from which it has evolved. These minor inconsistencies are embraced as part of the unique and individual charm and elegance of the fabric and do not affect the durability or shading properties.  

Dimpling is a natural occurrence with products that use a roller tube. The hems and seams are tighter than the single layer panels. This sometimes causes dimpling next to the seams, hems, or the center of the fabric panel. This "dimpling” is natural to acrylic fibers and does not affect the quality or durability.

Cleaning Fabric Awnings  

If you want to keep the fabric looking fresh, the fabric should be cleaned regularly before substances such as dirt, bird droppings or residue from your roof are permitted to accumulate and become embedded in the fabric. You can clean the fabric without removing it. An easy way to reach the top of the fabric is to stop the movement when the fabric is at the underside of the roll. Use a soft brush, even a toothbrush to remove any loose dirt, hose it down and clean with a mild natural soap like Ivory® Flakes or Woolite® in lukewarm water (no more than 100 degrees F.) Rinse thoroughly to remove all the soap. DO NOT USE DETERGENT. Allow the fabric to air dry before retracting. Do not allow water to puddle on the fabric.

Retractable Awning Operation  

Turn the gear with the supplied crank handle in one direction to extend awnings or lower shades. Turn in opposite direction to retract. Crank handle should be held at the same angle as the eyelet when operating. The crank handle may be removed when not in use.

Motorized Awning Operation  

Refer to instructions supplied by the motor manufacturer. Note: Avoid thermal overload in the motor. Repetitive uses can cause the motor to overheat. The motor will disable itself for a 15-20 minute cooling period, rather than allow itself to be damaged by excessive heat. This is a designed-in safety feature.

Opening Your Retractable Awning  

The lateral arms will be flexed, but locked, at the elbow when fully extended. This is normal. They will never fully straighten out. Trying to do so will damage the awning. When you open your awning, be careful not to roll the fabric out past the gear stops, where the elbows lock out and the fabric begins to sag. If this happens, roll the awning back until the fabric becomes tight again.

Retracting the Awning  

Retractable awnings are intended as protection against sun only. Do not use in strong wind, rain, hail or snow. We recommend that patio awnings be and remain retracted in wind speeds of 20 mph or greater. Do not allow twigs or leaves or any other solid debris to be rolled up in the awning. When retracting, do not jam the front bar tight against the rolled fabric. The fabric should always roll off the top of the roller tube and never from underneath. If that should happen, please contact the authorized dealer who installed your awning.

Aluminum Awning Framework  

The aluminum components have a durable finish and the joints are self-lubricating. Your product is designed so that maintenance is not normally required. However, it is a good idea to hose off the framework and wipe it with a soft cloth at the start of the outdoor season. You can lubricate the moving parts yearly with a dry silicone spray lubricant to maintain optimal, quiet operation. If unusual creaking occurs when operating, try lubrication before calling your dealer. The most prevalent place where an awning needs lubrication is at the end of the roller tube, on the side opposite the motor or gear. A bit of spray lubricant on the axle/ bushing at this point eliminates almost all squeaking noises. Be sure to keep the spray away from the fabric.  

We hope your shade products will get lots of use. So it’s a good idea to check the mounting bolts and screws and make sure they haven’t come loose over time. Give them a once-over before winter storage, or when you begin the outdoor season. If you discover a problem and aren’t sure how to tighten loose attachments on your own, schedule a maintenance service call from Suburban Construction. Preventive maintenance is always well worth the cost of the service call!

Awning Care: Winter Storage 

Retract the awning or canopy for winter. If your awning has a hanging valance, you can remove it by sliding it out from the front bar. Put it in a well ventilated dry area where it won’t be bothered by squirrels or mice. Don’t store it in a plastic bag as this will trap moisture and could produce mildew.