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click the images below to learn more about each of our retractable awning manufacturers.


Q. What are the differences between retractable awnings and fixed frame awnings?
A. The main difference between retractable and fixed frame awnings is movement. A fixed frame awning is a permanent structure that offers continual weather protection and is always present for constant, uninterrupted shade. While a retractable awning offers movement due to spring-loaded arms that support the awning and provides the option of sun or shade.

Q. Why should I get an awning instead of a deck or patio umbrella?
A. For starters, an awning is more durable and can be designed and constructed to meet the unique configuration of your home. An awning can cover a larger area and set the boundaries for an outdoor room. On the other hand, an umbrella is highly susceptible to wind damage, must always be operated manually and shades a much smaller space.

Q. If there are no poles on retractable awnings, what supports the awning?
A. "Retractable" or "lateral-arm" awnings as they are technically called are designed to be self-supporting and eliminate the need for poles and framework (a good-quality retractable awning should not need support poles). This style of awning relies on a secure structure mounting and its spring-loaded arms for its support.

Q. How will the awning mount to my home?
A. For applications under the eaves of your home, installers will mount brackets that tie indirectly either to wall studs or header plates. For roof-mounted applications, installers will mount brackets that tie indirectly into the rafters. Consult your installer for more details on the best way to mount your awning.

Q. Does the awning really make it cooler on my deck or patio?
A. Your awning will keep your deck or patio up to 20 degrees cooler, and will subsequently keep the inside of your home cooler as well. By preventing the sun from shining through a patio door or window, the inside stays cooler, which reduces air-conditioning costs and prevents fading of your carpets and furniture. Also, Sunbrella® fabrics are woven, which allows air to circulate through the fabric instead of letting heat build up under your awning.

Q. If my retractable awning is motorized, how can I adjust it if my power goes out?
A. Awnings will generally have a manual override crank that will allow you to retract your awning by hand in case of power failure or malfunction.

Q. If I don't initially install a motor with my retractable awning, can I add one at a later date?
A. It is easier to include a motor with the initial awning installation, but it is possible to add one at a later date. Research has shown that a motorized awning is used four times as often as a manual unit. Also, adding a motor later will be more costly than if the awning and motor are installed together with your initial purchase.

Q. What is the "pitch" of an awning? Is the pitch of an awning important, and what should it be?
A. The pitch is the angle of fall made by the front bar of an awning. The pitch determines how much water may puddle on the awning when the awning is fully extended. The less pitch an awning has, the more impact rain will have on the awning. All awnings will eventually fail if too much water or weight is allowed to collect on them. When set at the minimum pitch, an awning may collect rain even when the fabric is tight. The more pitch you have, the less you will have to worry about rain collecting on the awning. Increasing the pitch, even a few inches, will have a dramatic reduction on the awning's ability to collect rainwater. The pitch of an awning is not a factor if the awning is retracted during rain events. It's always best to retract the awning when not in use no matter what the weather forecast.

Adjusting the pitch can also provide better shade depending on the angle of the sun in relation to the angle of the awning.

Q. Do I have to fully extend my retractable awning?
A. Retractable awnings are designed so you can stop the awning at any point with the remote control or the hand crank. There are three buttons on the remote, one for extension, one for retraction, and one to stop the awning at your desired length.

Q. What kind of fabric is on an awning?
A. Today, most high-quality awnings use Sunbrella® fabrics. These high-grade fabrics have the color embedded in every fiber, ensuring that they won't significantly fade over time. Sunbrella fabrics are available in over 140 decorator patterns and can easily coordinate with your outdoor furniture. Sunbrella fabrics block 98 percent of the harmful UV rays of the sun and have been awarded the Seal of Recommendation by the Skin Cancer Foundation.

Q. How much wind can an awning handle?
A. There is no definite rating for how much wind an awning can handle. Light winds of less than 5 mph (8 kph) should not harm most awnings. However, wind gusts can rapidly reach very high speeds, and in extremely windy locations, an awning may not be suited for your application.

For a retractable awning, it is best to retract the awning before wind speeds reach the point of causing the awning to sway side to side or up and down. It is best to retract the awning when not in use regardless of the weather conditions.

Excessive wind and rain are the leading causes of damage to awnings.

Q. What about rust and corrosion of the frame, cables and other metal parts?
A. To minimize corrosion, it is essential to use the proper material during construction. Stainless steel, galvanized steel and anodized aluminum are your best choices for prevention of rust and corrosion.

Q. How do I clean my Sunbrella fabric awning cover?
A. Your Sunbrella awning fabric should be cleaned regularly before substances such as dirt, roof particles, etc., are allowed to accumulate and become embedded in the fabric. The fabric can be cleaned without being removed from the home. For detailed instructions, please visit

Q. How does Sunbrella fabric lock in color?
A. Sunbrella fabrics are made from 100 percent solution-dyed acrylic yarns. Solution dying is the manufacturing process of adding color to fibers while they are in a liquid state. This feature of Sunbrella fabrics allows them to lock in color, be easily cleaned and provides them with a long life.

Sunbrella® - Superior pigments are added during the production of fade-resistant Sunbrella fiber. The final result is Sunbrella yarn and fabric with color throughout that won't fade or wash away. Think "carrot."

Other Fabrics - Dyes are added to the surface of the yarn or fabric. The color only penetrates the outer layer and washes out or fades over time. Think "radish."


Q. How much wind is safe for my awning?

ANSWER. Every awning can withstand average breezes without any problems. Please refer our engineered maximum wind load ratings for the Sunflexx awning, located in the technical section of this website.

Q. What maintenance is required?

ANSWER. The beauty of these awnings is the fact they are virtually maintenance free. In inland areas simply wash the frame and fabric once per year with mild soap and water. In salt water areas we suggest washing once a month.

Q. What is a "urethane" compression shoulder joint?

ANSWER. The shoulder joint is the hinged point where the extension arm attaches to the mounting frame. It is the point of most stress. Our patented urethane shoulder joint acts as a shock absorber protecting the awning from damage due to wind and rain that would destroy an ordinary awning made with common die cast aluminum.

Q. Can these be used in the rain?

ANSWER. If the awning is installed with the minimum recommended angle of pitch, it is safe to use in light to moderate rain. If the awning is equipped with our optional Wind & Rain Package the awning can be used in an even greater range of weather conditions.  However, it should never be left unattended, as heavy rain could cause water to pool on the fabric and possibly damage the frame and the fabric.

Q. How long after I order the awning will it be installed?

ANSWER. Depending on your dealers schedule, you should expect installation 2 to 4 weeks from date of order.

Q. Can I install it myself?

ANSWER. If you have basic carpentry skills and some knowledge of home construction, you can install these yourself. However, because there are adjustment issues and other factors to look for, we strongly recommend you let an experienced dealer install the unit and stand behind their work.

Q. Can I buy directly from Eastern?

ANSWER. No. We only sell through a network of authorized dealers.

Q. Will the awning stress my wall?

ANSWER. When extended, the awning does exert a significant force at the point at which it is mounted to the wall, but our certified wind load testing was conducted on ordinary 2"x4" stud construction walls without any adverse effects. Even under excessive force, the mount will generally release before any structural problem could occur.

Q. Can I still have an awning if I have a very low clearance above my door?

ANSWER. If you have low head room or a restricted mounting area where you would like the awning, we have specially designed roof brackets allowing the entire unit to be safely mounted on the roof. Your dealer can best advise you on the most suitable location.

Q. What is the Wind & Rain Package option?

ANSWER. It is a system of drop down legs and locking pins designed to stabilize the awning during windy or rainy conditions.

Q. Can I leave my awning unattended by buying the W & R package?

ANSWER. No. Because retractable awnings have no direct fabric support we do not recommend ever leaving them unattended. The Wind & Rain package is designed to expand the usability of the standard Sunflexx, but not to be left unattended.

Q. Can we add the Wind & Rain package to a Sunflexx afterwards?

ANSWER. Yes, but the arms must be returned to the factory for modification thus significantly increasing labor costs.

Q. How do I find a dealer in my area?

ANSWER. Call us at 800-445-4142 and we will refer an authorized dealer in your area.

Q. Why would I want a motor for my awning?

ANSWER. A motor makes operation both easier and more convenient. It sure is nicer to simply push a button to roll your awning in or out, plus you can add an automatic Wind and Sun sensor or a remote control.

Q. Can I add a motor to my awning later?

ANSWER. Your authorized dealer can always add a motor later at a slightly higher cost due to the extra labor involved.

Q. Do I need an electrician if I want a motor?

ANSWER. You would want to have an electrician wire the motor if you have an interior switch. You can order the awning with an exterior weatherproof switch box that simply plugs into an existing exterior outlet.

Q. How long will the fabric last?

ANSWER. You can expect the most common acrylic fabrics will last 8 to 12 years depending on use and exposure.

Q. How do I clean the fabric if it gets soiled or stained?

ANSWER. you can clean lightly soiled fabric with a solution of soap flakes or Woolite and water. Severely soiled or stained fabric can be professionally cleaned to look like new.

Q. How much does a Sunflexx or SunScape cost?

ANSWER. Each awning is made to size with a variety of options. Your dealer can give you an idea of cost over the telephone if you know about what size area you want to cover.

Q. Will the installation permanently deface my siding?

ANSWER. There will be some holes from the bolts used to secure the mounting brackets, but there should not be any substantial modification needed on a common type home wall.

Q. What sizes are available?

ANSWER. Each Sunflexx awning is custom made to exact widths up to 80' with five standard projections of  6', 8', 10', 12', and 14'.

Q. What is the maximum angle of pitch?

ANSWER. The Sunflexx and SunScape awnings can be adjusted to a maximum pitch of 45 degrees.

Q. How is the projection measured?

ANSWER. The projection is measured as the distance from the mounting surface to the edge of the front rail with the awning extended strait.  As the angle of pitch increases, the effective ground coverage decreases