Best Awnings Companies
Updated on 10/31/2017
Awnings provide shade and protection from heat and rain and are installed over decks, porches, patios, doors and windows. They can keep interior home temperatures cooler and reduce electric bills as well as protect outdoor and indoor furniture from sun exposure.
Awnings vary in features, ease of use and pricing. They are available in many different styles depending on the purpose they are serving. They can be designed in a variety of sizes in order to fit specific spaces and are made for both residential and commercial areas.
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SunSetter Awnings, founded in 1988, is one of America's most popular retractable awning companies. The company is based in Malden, MA and features affordable custom-built designs for windows, patios and other outdoor products.
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Located in Long Island, New York, Rollup Awnings has been in business since 1979. The company offers awnings, shutters, storm panels, and more with complete customization and fabric selection.
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Retractableawnings.com is an online supplier of a range of awnings for the home or office. The company operates out of Miami, Florida and features on-call experts to fix any issues at hand.
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Awntech, a Texas-based company, is an awning company that offers door awnings, window awnings and replacement awnings. The company's goal is to provide quality awnings at the lowest possible prices.
|KE Durasol Awnings|
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Durasol, based in the Hudson Valley, makes durable, retractable fabric awnings. Proud to be a "Total Shading Solution" since its founding in 1984. Durasol also offers solar screens and sun structures.
|Sunesta Retractable Awnings||Read 10 Reviews|
Sunesta is known for making retractable awnings for windows, doors and decks of all sizes. The company was founded in 1981, and it also sells screens, shelters and other patio accessories.
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Reed Awning brings over 150 years of professional expertise to the awning industry. The company is based in Cleveland, OH and makes a wide selection of custom-built awnings.
|Solarus USA||Read Expert Review|
Solarus USA is a company that specializes in retractable awning systems with customized detailing. It sells window, cottage, patio and commercial awnings from its headquarters in Miami, Florida.
|Sunair Awnings & Solar Screens||Read Reviews|
Located in Phoenix, Arizona and Jessup, Maryland, Sunair is a company that sells awnings, solar screens and pergola covers, along with Solharos® and Variettes®. The company has been in operation since 1978.
|Thompson Awning Company||Read Expert Review|
Located in Jacksonville, Florida, Thompson Awning Company sells a wide range of awnings, canopies, signage, shutters and more. The company has been making and selling awnings in Florida since 1920.
What features matter most when choosing an awning?
Awnings come in a variety of materials. The main function is to stand up to harsh weather and provide proper shade and protection. Awnings made of strong materials can also help keep homes cooler and more shaded, reducing energy costs and potential sun fading on furniture.
- Machine washable: Machine washable awnings provide easy cleanup. They save time and money vs. the awnings that require wiping down or frequent replacement.
- Sun/UV blockage: Materials that block sun and UV rays offer more protection in sunny climates. Having a patio or outdoor area with less direct sunlight can make it a more appealing area in the home.
- Water resistance: Water resistant awnings keep the area underneath completely dry and don’t grow mildew as easily.
Some awnings offer more adjustability than others. Controls should be simple and allow the necessary amount of movement depending on the awning placement.
- Retractability: Some awnings can be pulled back to provide more or less cover.
- Motorized: Motorized awnings allow a person to adjust it with the touch of a button.
- Remote: Remote control awnings can be adjusted with a handheld remote.
Awning covers can be treated with different materials to protect it from the weather. This can extend the life of an awning to a considerable degree.
- Vinyl or laminate: Vinyl or laminate coatings are flame and water resistant but prone to fading.
- Acrylic coated: Acrylic is not flame or water resistant, but has longer lasting color.
Some awnings can be installed on your own but others require a professional. Installation costs will vary depending on what is involved in the installation process.
- Protective housing: A protective cover can provide greater longevity of fabric, and protect the motor of a motorized awning.
- Electrical: Motorized awnings require some electrical installation, which means professional help may be necessary. Installing some motorized awnings may be as simple as plugging in the electrical cord.
- Attachment: These awnings can be installed by the buyer, and can be attached to the wall or standing columns.
Ease of use
Awnings should be simple and easy to use without requiring much maintenance or manual labor.
- Sensors: Sun, wind and rain sensors automatically retract the awning so you can keep store it more easily when it’s not necessary to have it drawn out.
- Durability: Awnings made from more durable materials will require less maintenance.
- Motorization: Motorized awnings are easier to retract but can require more repairs over time if there are any electrical issues. Motorized awnings also come with a hand crank in the event of a power outage.
A warranty will cover various issues should any arise with your awning.
- Time-based warranty: This will protect your awning against defects in materials and workmanship for a period of time, such as one year, five years or 10 years. It is standard in this industry to offer coverage for manufacturing or installation issues but coverage for rain or weather damage is usually an additional cost.
- All-weather warranty: This gives additional protection against severe damage from storms.
What are the different types of awnings?
Aluminum awnings are sturdy and require very little maintenance. They are available in many colors and create cooler temperatures inside the home, provide a lot of shade and are great at protecting furniture and window treatments. However, they are not as stylish or decorative as fabric awnings.
Fixed awnings are permanently attached to the wall and can’t be adjusted. They are sturdy, long-lasting and offer full weather protection. The downside is that a fixed awning can’t be stored or protected when not in use, which means it may incur more wear and tear over time.
Retractable lateral arm
Retractable lateral arm awnings extend from a rooftop to provide shade over a patio or deck, making them the largest type of awning. They can either be hand-cranked or motorized and provide as little or as much cover as you like. They offer maximum flexibility throughout the day and the different seasons, and can be tucked away into holders during rain or cold months.
Retractable side or drop arm
Side or drop arm awnings are the most traditional and provide the most sun protection and keep your house cooler and your outdoor area more shaded. They can be found in both motorized and manual versions. These can also be stored in holders when not in use in order to preserve them over time.
Window awnings are smaller and like all awnings, protect the inside of a building from excess sunlight while adding an aesthetic touch. Some window awnings come with a cord that allows for the owner to adjust the angle of the awning.
Who uses awnings?
Residential awnings can add an extra decorative touch to a home. They reduce sun glare and save money by reducing the need for air conditioning. Awnings help to make an outdoor area more pleasant and safe, increasing the space of the home.
Commercial awnings can attract more customers and give a business more character. They can be printed with a business name and logo to improve branding and recognition and can also provide a shaded, protected spot for guests to sit or stand.
Expert reviews for awnings
Rollup Awnings has been in business for over 30 years and has showrooms that customers can visit to see their products firsthand. They offer awning delivery and installation throughout Long Island.
SunSetter Products is America’s largest awning manufacturer. They specialize in retractable deck and patio awnings, freestanding awnings, window awnings and vertical solar shades. Customers can either buy awnings and install it themselves or have a free in-home consultation with SunSetter dealers who can install the awnings.
Sunesta has been providing North America with ready-to-install retractable awnings since 1981. They partner with component specialists and engineers around the world to continuously improve their technology and product.
Known for being a leader in motorized and manually retractable awnings, Durasol has been in business since 1984. They are located in upstate New York and have a strong distribution network and a reliable reputation.
Reed Awning is a subsidiary of Ohio Awning and Manufacturing and is a state-of-the-art retractable awning company headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio.
Solarus is a custom manufacturer for awnings and retractable screens for homes and businesses. They are a relatively new business but have already won awards for their services.
- Customer service: Solarus has excellent customer service standards and prides itself on resolving issues quickly.
- Materials: Solarus uses exclusive materials, including Sunbrella’s premium Marine-grade fabric. They also import hard carbon metals, which is imported, and tend to be stronger than others.
- Quality: Awnings are made specifically to endure the extreme weather conditions in Florida, and have been thoroughly tested to ensure that they will operate smoothly.
- Service: Solarus sells material across the country but only services select locations in Florida.
- History: Solarus hasn’t been operating very long so they don’t have the history and reliability that older businesses offer.
- Best for: Homeowners, Business Owners
Sunair, which was originally founded in Sweden, has been in business since 1978 and makes retractable awnings and shade systems for homeowners and restaurants. They work with a large network of independent dealers in North America, the Caribbean and Mexico.
Thompson Awning Company has been in business since 1920 and has a solid reputation. They are located in North Florida and specialize in both commercial and residential awnings.
- Selection: Thompson Awnings offers the basic selections as well as additional options such as canopies, metal awnings and Bahama shutters.
- Experience: The company has been in business since 1920 and has a proven track record of both client satisfaction and quality craftsmanship.
- Graphics: Thompson Awnings also offers a graphics and signage service.
- Location: Thompson Awning Company only services select locations in North Florida.
- Fabrics: The company doesn’t offer a huge fabric selection and sources all fabrics from one company.
- Best for: Homeowners, Business Owners
Aristocrat Awnings is a part of the Craft-Bilt company. Craft-Bilt has been in business since 1946, and it’s been making retractable awnings since 1986. Aristocrat offers several types of awnings and shades to make patios and other outdoor spaces more comfortable. The company is headquartered in Souderton, Pennsylvania.
As a family-owned business, RetractableAwnings.com has been putting customer satisfaction first for 27 years. They believe quality awnings means satisfied customers and as the buyers, assemblers and distributors, they are in a unique position to take care of quality assurance.
Information in this guide is general in nature and is intended for informational purposes only; it is not legal, health, investment or tax advice. ConsumerAffairs.com makes no representation as to the accuracy of the information provided and assumes no liability for any damages or loss arising from its use.