How To Clean Your Awnings 

Now that your home or business has a beautiful new awning, you are getting compliments from everyone who sees it. Of course, since it’s so new, it’s as clean as a whistle. To keep it this way, you will need to perform regular cleaning to keep the awning fabric looking spotless. Since it’s not hard to learn how to clean awnings, we at Rollac have some excellent tips you can use not only on your awning fabric, but also the lateral arm, awning frame, and much more.

Dusty yellow awnings that need to be cleaned

How Often Should You Wash Your House or Business Awnings?

Once you install retractable awnings on your home or business, the good news is that you won’t need to be hosing them down and scrubbing on them each and every week. In fact, under normal conditions, we at Rollac recommend you only need to clean your awnings once every two or three months. By doing so, your awnings should continue to work very well and look great for many years to come. 

What Cleaning Tools and Supplies Will be Needed?

To clean your awning, you will need such tools and supplies as:

  • Garden hose
  • Buckets
  • Mild detergent (dishwashing detergent)
  • Soft bristle brush
  • Clean cloth and paper towels
  • Ladder

Once you’ve got your cleaning tools and supplies ready, it’s time to get down to business and keep your awning looking like new.

How to Clean Your Awning Step by Step

Step 1: Brush off the Loose Dirt

Using your soft bristle brush, brush all loose dirt off your awning before you get it wet. Otherwise, you’ll have a muddy mess.

Step 2: Hose Down the Awning

Now that the loose dirt is gone, take your garden hose and wet down your awning.

Step 3: Prepare the Soapy Water

To prepare your soapy water, use about one-fourth cup of dishwashing liquid for every one gallon of water. For best results, we often find dishwashing liquid is able to cut through stubborn stains.

Step 4: Clean the Awning with Soapy Water

When you are ready, take your soft bristle brush and begin cleaning the awning with the soapy water. Be sure to cover your entire awning, including the frames and lateral arms. 

Step 5: Let the Soapy Water Soak into the Awning’s Fabric

Once you apply soapy water to your awning, don’t do so and then immediately rinse it off. Instead, let it soak into the awning’s fabric for several minutes, since this will help break up dirt and stains. 

Step 6: Rinse Off the Soap Residue

After several minutes have passed, rinse off the soap residue on your awning. If all goes well, your awning will be sparkling in the bright sunshine.

Step 7: Allow the Awning to Air Dry

Finally, let the sun and any breeze that may be blowing work their magic by allowing your awning to air dry naturally. 

How to Clean Stubborn Stains 

If your awning has mildew, mold or other stubborn stains from dirt, paint, or rust, you can prepare another batch of soapy water that also contains one cup of bleach. If you do so, use the soft bristle brush to apply it to the stains, then let it soak into the fabric for 15 minutes. Rinse it off, and repeat if necessary. 

Can You Pressure Wash an Awning?

Generally, we at Rollac recommend pressure washers not be used to clean awnings. If you try to use a pressure washer while not being too sure about how to clean awnings, chances are you will damage your awning in the process, and unfortunately we’ve heard of this happening many times over the years. Most of the time, the high pressure from the water will tear the awning fabric or get the awning’s frame misaligned. If either of these problems occur, you could be facing expensive repairs or even the prospect of buying a new awning.

General Awning Cleaning and Care Tips

  • Don’t roll up a wet awning.
  • Keep shrubbery or vines away from the awning, since they often contain harmful acids that can lead to staining.
  • Don’t scrub the awning’s fabric too hard.
  • Always use a soft-bristle brush when cleaning awnings. Never use wire brushes, since they may tear the fabric or leave scratch marks.
  • Don’t get insect spray on the awning. Some sprays impair water repellency, leading to an increased chance of staining.
  • Remember to brush the underside of your awning now and then with a broom or soft-bristled brush.
  • Don’t let leaves accumulate on your awning. Over time, they can stain the fabric.

Learn More about Awnings by Contacting Us Today

While cleaning your awnings is pretty easy in most cases, that doesn’t mean you won’t have more questions from time to time, especially if you are new to awnings. To get your questions answered by experts, contact us today here at Rollac.