Retractable awnings are a great investment for your home by contributing to your outdoor living space. Not only does a retractable awning add aesthetic appeal to your home, but it also provides lasting benefits for you to enjoy, such as allowing you to enjoy the sun or shade at any time. Also, a retractable awning helps to personalize your deck or patio for optimal comfort, but which type should you choose, manual or motorized?
Both types will do the job, but there are significant benefits to installing a motorized retractable patio awning. Here are some of the top reasons why many homeowners end up deciding on a motorized system instead of a manual method.
Convenience of Motorized Awnings
The convenience and ease of operating a motorized patio awning can’t be matched since it comes with a remote control that’s a snap to operate. With the push of a button, you can unroll or roll up your patio awning to the desired level instead of constantly cranking a lever to set the awning to the desired position.
With a remote in your hand, you can adjust your patio awning as the sun changes and never even have to get up to set the position, unlike a manual, which requires more time, more up and down motion from you chair and increased manual labor. You get to continue relaxing while the motor does the work for you.
Motorized retractable awnings are particularly advantageous when a bad rain storm whips up. Would you rather stand outside in a downpour with violent winds while physically cranking a shaft to roll in your patio awning or touch a button from the comfort and safety inside?
Finally, seniors, people with arthritis, or those with wrist problems, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, may find manual cranking hard on their joints. Automatic motorized awnings can make a difficult process much easier.
The benefits of motorized patio awnings go beyond being able to retract them automatically. They come with features and accessories that you can individualize, such as synchronizing your awning to sense rain, sunlight or wind. These advanced automated settings not only increase the ease and convenience of managing your patio awning but makes sure that the awning will stay safe during poor weather conditions. These features allow you the freedom from worrying when to roll in your patio awning during inclement weather if it knows when to do so itself.
Final Thoughts on Motorized Awnings:
To some, the benefits of motorized retractable patio awnings far outweigh those of manual ones. With a motorized patio awning, you can have the most modern outdoor living space designed for supreme convenience. If you’re in the market for a new patio awning, you can contact Jans Awning Products in Burlington Ontario to learn more about the benefits of motorized retractable patio awnings.
It can be very annoying when you have a beautiful day, a stuffy house, and a window which is stiff or hard to open – if at all. We all need fresh air and ventilation, so what can you do to help open your hard-to-open windows?
There are a number of different reasons why windows stick, so the first step is to discover the root of the problem. Typical problem areas include:
- The hinges
- Another problem in the window’s mechanism
- Expansion of the window or frame
Once you have figured out where the problem is, you can now go about solving it!
It is common that window hinges can rust. The fact that they are exposed to wind and rain means that they can rust easily. First, clean the hinges so that you can see how bad the damage is. Use a household cleaner, then silicon or a dry Teflon spray lube, and then try to move the window a little to see how the mechanism is working.
Look at the top and bottom of the hinges especially, from that you will have to decide whether you would be better off replacing the whole hinge (or hinges).
To replace the hinges, take out the screws and remove the hinge – you might need to use a knife to get through any dried paint that may have sealed shut. Then screw in the replacement hinge.
If you decide to stick with your existing hinges, you might want to keep an eye on them and check that they aren’t getting too rusty. Unfortunately, once corrosion has occurred, it is likely to happen again.
Other Mechanism Problems
Depending on the kind of windows you have, you might have corrosion or other mechanical problems. In which case, you should do the same as above – clean and see if you can save the mechanism or if you think that you would be better off replacing it entirely.
Expansion of the Window or Frame
If you have windows and frames which are made of wood, it is possible that time and the elements have warped the wood. Especially water causes wood to expand and the effect can be that your window won’t open or close. This can often change with the weather – so if it is a particularly moist period, with a lot of rain or dampness in the air, it is more likely that your wooden windows might expand.
If you don’t want to wait for the weather to change, and the swelling to go down, you can try and use a chisel to pry open the window and if the problem persists, you may want to think about sanding down one side of the window or frame.
Especially In older properties, a common problem is that windows get painted many times and the paint can seal the window shut. So how do you un-stick a window? First, try using a Stanley knife to run around the edge of the window and break the seal. If that doesn’t work, try a flexible steel scraper to get in deeper, and only as a last case scenario, try gently with a chisel.
The jamming of windows is a common problem, especially in older properties. Windows which are fitted today are a lot better protected against the elements and therefore much less likely to have problems.
For more information about caring for your windows and window frames, or inquiring about purchasing new windows, get in touch with us today!
A screen door is usually fitted in front of a normal door to either keep out bugs and insects, or leaves, earth and plants during a storm. It means that you don’t have to have your main doors closed, so the air can circulate within the house – which is very important, especially in hot weather.
It is the meshing in the screen door which causes insects and debris to stay outside, so if the screen door develops a hole, this can be potentially disastrous – rendering the screen useless. So if you get a hole in your screen door, do you need to replace the whole door, or can it be repaired?
Repairing Small Holes in a Screen
For small holes, repairs can be made easily. In most cases you won’t need to replace the whole door – a small repair should do the trick. There are a number of techniques which you can use – depending on the size of the hole and the type of material that the screen in made from:
- Buy screen repair kits from a hardware store, which will give you everything that you need to be able to repair the hole – as well as instructions.
- A vinyl or fiberglass screen can be fixed with a small amount of clear nail varnish. Dab it on the edges of the hole to stop the tear from spreading as well as block up the hole.
- If you have scraps of the same material as the screen, you can darn or patch together the hole. For a wire screen, unravel some of the mesh and use that as the thread.
- Use a piece of silicon adhesive to patch up holes in metal or fiberglass screens. You can build up the layers until the hole is fully and securely blocked.
Repairing Large Holes in a Screen Door
For larger holes you will need to decide whether it is worth repairing it, or if you would be better off replacing the entire door. If the quality of the mesh is already poor, it might be worth replacing the entire door.
To fix a larger hole, you will need a square of replacement mesh which is a couple of inches bigger than the hole, all round. You might want to buy it, or use the mesh from an old screen if you have one.
- Start by cutting out the right sized square from your ‘new’ mesh – a couple of inches bigger than the hole on each edge.
- Unravel the horizontal wires around the hole so there is half an inch unraveled on each side.
- Bend the wires along each side so that they are perpendicular to the rest of the mesh – you can use a ruler or a counter edge to get an even, smooth line.
- Put the patch over the screen, so that the perpendicular wires poke through and hold it in place and it is covered entirely.
- Bend each wire individually to close, making sure that there are no bits sticking out which could catch people or clothes.
If you develop a hole in your screen door or window, it is important that you deal with it as soon as possible – both to save your home from unwanted bugs or debris, but also to ensure that it doesn’t spread. A smaller hole is much easier and quicker to fix, and by following these instructions you can deal with the problem straight away.
For more information about doors and windows, get in touch with Jans Awning Products today!
For over two centuries, awnings have played an important functional role by defining the visual characteristics of our streetscapes. All throughout their history, the awning has had great curb appeal both in residential and commercial development. These attractive canopies provided natural climate control in an age before air conditioning by blocking out the sun’s rays while admitting daylight. Awnings proved to be remarkably efficient and cost effective even in their early stage of construction.
From a commercial standpoint, they were central to a building’s primary façade and appearance. Over time, manufacturers designed awnings featuring distinctive stripes, ornate valances, and painted lettering and logos. Because of the vast variety of colour and pattern choices, business owners could select an awning that complemented the building at a relatively affordable package rate. Lately, building owners interested in historic buildings have rediscovered awnings. There are many local “downtown core” preservation programs that helped invigorate the awning’s return.
Although awnings are remarkable building features, they have changed little during their recorded history. Records dating back to ancient Egypt and Syria that make note of woven mats that shaded market stalls and homes. In the Roman Empire, large retractable fabric awnings sheltered the seating areas of amphitheatres and stadiums, including the Coliseum. Over the next two millennia, awnings appeared throughout the world, while the technology used in their construction changed little.
Awnings in the 19th Century
When awnings began to commonly appear on American storefronts, during the first half of the 19th century, they were simple, often improvised and strictly utilitarian assemblies. The basic hardware consisted of timber or cast iron posts set along the sidewalk edge and linked by a front cross bar. During the winter months, proper maintenance called for the removal and storage of awnings.
Canvas duck was the predominant awning fabric. A strong, closely woven cotton cloth used for centuries to make tents and sails, canvas is a versatile material with a relatively short lifespan compensated by its low cost.
Awnings became a common feature in the years after the Civil War. Iron plumbing pipe, which was quickly adapted for awning frames, became widely available and affordable as a result of mid-century industrialization. It was a natural material for awning frames, easily bent and threaded together to make a range of different shapes and sizes. As the awning industry developed, it offered an array of frame and fabric options adaptable to both storefronts and windows.
In the second half of the 19th century, manufactured operable awnings grew in popularity. Operable systems for both storefront and window awnings had extension arms that were hinged where they joined the façade, but the early operable awnings had their own drawbacks. When retracted, the coverings on early operable awnings bunched up against the building facade where it was still partially exposed to inclement weather.
Addressing the drawbacks of the original hinged awning, new roller awnings featured a wood or metal cylinder around which the canvas was stored when the awning was retracted. When fully retracted, only the valance was visible. A long detachable handle (called a “winding brace”), or a gearbox and crankshaft attached to the building was used to turn the roller. Some later models were operated by electric motor.
An expanded variety of available canvas colors, patterns, and valance shapes also appeared during this period. Awning companies developed a colorful vocabulary of awning stripes that enhanced the decorative schemes of buildings, and in some cases, served as a building’s primary decorative feature.
Homeowners found that the new generation of awnings could enhance exterior paint schemes and increase the visual appeal of their homes. Manufacturers developed new awning shapes, colors, patterns and hardware to fit different house, door, window and porch styles. They were an affordable, quick and simple improvement. They also proved to be an easy means of capturing outside space. Homeowners could use awning-covered balconies, porches and patios at any time of day.
Businesses used the expanded repertoire of awnings to draw attention to their buildings with bright colours, whimsical stripe patterns, and exotic scallops. Awnings increasingly functioned as signs identifying the proprietor’s name, goods or year of establishment. It was a trend that would culminate over a century later with awning installations in which shelter was secondary to advertisement.
Awnings in the 20th Century
Awning development during the early twentieth century focused on improving operability. Variations in roller awnings addressed the need to provide an increasingly customized product that accommodated a wide range of storefront configurations and styles. Operable awnings, whether fixed arm, scissors arm, or lateral arm, rapidly gained popularity as customers came to appreciate the flexibility, concealed appearance, and longer lifespan made possible by roller units.
Canvas duck remained the common awning fabric during the first half of the twentieth century. However, its tendency to stretch and fade, and its susceptibility to mildew, and flammable materials like cigarettes and matches motivated the awning industry to search for alternatives.
Shortly after World War II, a vinyl plastic coating that increased fade and water resistance was first applied to the canvas. By the 1960s, vinyl resins, acrylic fibers and polyester materials were all being used to provide a longer-lasting awning cover. Ironically, just when these innovations promised more durable awnings, the fabric awning industry felt the debilitating impact of changing architectural fashion, the widespread adoption of air conditioning, and the increasing availability of aluminum awnings.
Widely available by the 1950s, aluminum awnings were touted as longer-lasting and lower-maintenance than traditional awnings. Though used on small-scale commercial structures, they were especially popular with homeowners. Aluminum awnings were made with slats called “pans” arranged horizontally or vertically. For variety and to match the building to which they were applied, different colored slats could be arranged to create stripes or other decorative patterns.
While aluminum awnings were usually fixed, in the 1960s several operable roller awnings were developed, including one with the trade name Flexalum Roll-Up. Also during this period, manufactured flat-metal canopies were an increasingly popular feature, used in new commercial construction and when remodeling existing storefronts.
New Shapes in the 1970s and 1980s
An increasing reliance on fixed aluminum frames and plastic coverings spurred the development of new awning shapes during the 1970s and 1980s. Mansard awnings, concave awnings, quarter-round awnings, and quarter-rounds with rounded dome ends appeared with increasing frequency. Most had vinyl or other plastic coverings that were touted as being more resilient than traditional materials. Featuring bold lettering and colors that were often emphasized by illuminating the awnings from within, these awnings were common on new commercial strips and were even popular inside enclosed shopping centers and food courts.
Today’s awnings come in a variety of shapes, sizes, frames and fabrics. Fixed, quarter-round, back-lit awnings with broad faces featuring company names, logos, phone numbers, and street addresses function more as signs than sunshades. Relatively new “staple-in” awnings with a shed shape are commonly used on new commercial construction.
Apart from the strip mall, awnings are also reappearing in historic business districts and residential neighborhoods. In these locations, new awnings typically feature fixed frames or operating lateral arms both differing little from the awnings of one hundred years before. Fixed frame awnings have frames made of either aluminum or light gauge galvanized or zinc-coated steel pipes welded together. New lateral arm awnings with powder-coated aluminum frames are an increasingly common choice for building owners who want the convenience of an operable system.
Regular cleaning will lengthen the lifespan of any awning. About once a month the covering should be hosed down with clean water. Choose a sunny day so that the fabric dries quickly and thoroughly. Keep retractable awnings extended until they dry completely. The awning underside can be kept clean by brushing it with a household broom. Regular cleaning helps prevent dirt from becoming embedded in the fabric. At least twice a year the awning should be gently scrubbed using a soft brush and a mild, natural soap (not a detergent) and rinsed with a garden hose. Every two or three years, professional cleaning is recommended.
Let Jans Awning Products help to showcase your home in the neighborhood with the installation of beautiful and desirable awnings. Contact us today and our team of experts will be ready to help.
You need new windows but it’s not clear which style of window will fit your space and you’re just not getting the picture. Educating yourself on the styles, quality, and elements available in the window industry will give you a better view of your window preferences and your window needs.
Bay windows increase space and often can create a seating area in a room. Bay windows are generally made of a least three separate window casements that come together into one frame. A bay window will let in more light than a traditional window but will also cost more than a traditional window. It’s important when having bay windows installed that they are properly insulated as they do actually extend beyond the exterior of the home and are therefore exposed to the elements.
A picture window is any window that is situated at the front of the home. It is often the largest window in the house and, therefore, provides the biggest picture. Again, picture windows can be more expensive than others because of their size. There is an abundance of design options for picture windows and picture windows will define a large portion of the home. Due to the size of the window, you may want to also consider getting an awning, to help control the climate in your home.
A bow window does just that, bows. Unlike a bay window that has hard angles, a bow window has gentler curves that still let in loads of light. Bow windows can look a lot like bay windows. Like a bay window, bow windows will open up a room and give it flair. A bow window, however, typically has three to five windows while the bay has only three. Any or all of the windows in a bow design may open or be fixed.
Casements windows are popular for basements and bathrooms. Traditional casement windows slide open but with recent technology, many can now swing open or open like an awning would. Casement windows can turn a small basement window into a legitimate exit when needed. Casement windows are very streamlined and because of this, are often more affordable. Casement windows have come a long way and where they once lacked many insulating capabilities, double and triple pane glass has made them much more efficient. They have found a new following among the lineup of replacement windows.
All of the above windows may come double hung, with triple pane glass and with technology that will make your new windows energy efficient. Though the space you need to fill is unyielding in its parameters, what you ultimately fill that space with, doesn’t have to be. Be creative, match existing architecture and make sure you respect your budget. Choosing a window style that suits your space and your personality will leave you confident in your picture perfect choice.
Whether you’ve done the research or are starting from scratch, contact Jans Awning Products today and our team of professionals will be ready to help you through every step of the way, from choosing a window that will suit you and your home’s needs to installing the windows.
Windows can have a huge impact on the look and feel of the rooms in your home. Large windows looking out onto a scenic view can bring the outdoors in while making a space feel bigger and brighter. That being said, you do not want your windows to literally allow the outdoors in! Old or damaged windows can let in air, moisture, dirt and unwanted pests. Often times, homeowners will overlook replacing their older windows for years, but the results of new, professionally installed windows are always a worthwhile investment.
Many homeowners will notice in the colder months of the year if their windows need replacing. A cold draft in the winter is usually a tell-tale sign of a window that needs replacing. Snow resting on the windowsill might prove to turn into moisture on the inside. In these types of cases, can your windows be replaced in the winter? Or, is it best to wait until the spring and summer months to upgrade?
The simple answer is that windows can be replaced at anytime. The winter season can actually be an advantageous time of year, because special promotions are often offered at this time of year. Many home owners have concerns such as:
- Will our house be affected by snow or cold temperatures throughout the process?
- Will heat loss cause my monthly bill to skyrocket?
- Will there be damage to my belongings because of water or snow in my home?
With professional installation, none of these factors should cause concern. Windows are replaced one at a time in the most efficient way possible. Special floor coverings are provided to make sure that moisture is under control during the whole process.
One important factor to consider in the winter, however, is the type of sealing product used throughout installation. Some products will shrink when they freeze, allowing holes to open. In these cases the windows can be re-sealed in the spring and most warranties will cover this type of repair.
Water based sealants usually freeze at temperatures below 0 degrees Celsius, and can cause problems if proper temperature recommendations are not taken. Due to a reduced evaporation rate, solvent based sealants cure at a slower rate and at lower temperatures. Moisture cure sealants are often made of polyurethane and silicone and also cure at a slower rate as the temperature drops. Ask your installation professional what type of sealant they are using to ensure weather conditions are being considered in your home.
If you are in Burlington or surrounding areas and need to have your windows replaced by people who know what they are doing, and at a modest price, please Contact Jans Awning Products and speak to the professionals today.
Though there isn’t much we can do about the ever increasing cost of hydro in Ontario, there are many measures we can take to limit our consumption, and lower our bill during the winter months. If you have heat leaving your home during the winter, this should be first on the list to fix.
If your home is older or even if your windows and doors have seen better days, heat is leaving your house, driving your electricity and heating bill upwards. Replacing windows and doors doesn’t come cheap but will most certainly pay for themselves over the years. New windows will also increase your property value and add appeal to both the interior and exterior of your house.
Windows and doors can fail to do their job for a number of reasons. All will leave your house vulnerable to the frigid temperatures of winter.
No matter what the age of your windows are, if they aren’t made with quality materials and quality workmanship, they aren’t going to keep the heat in. Living in Burlington, Energy Efficient windows will pay themselves off quickly with our hot summers (keeping the air conditioned air in and the hot air out) and frigid winters. North Star windows, for example use Low -E glass. This involves a coating on the glass that reduces the amount of heat lost while letting in the maximum amount of light.
Old Windows and Doors
If your windows are more than ten years old, they don’t likely include the most recent energy efficient technologies. Even if you windows and doors are in good shape, they are still likely letting your indoor heat out. Old windows and doors may be made of wood that has seen better days. Wood can become a breeding ground of mold when it is exposed to moisture. Wood will also expand and contract with temperature variations. All these things will contribute to heat loss. North Star windows and doors are made from vinyl and are on average, twice as efficient as your average 10-year-old window.
Technology and quality materials will go a long way in producing energy efficient windows and doors that will save you money on your heating bill. If your windows and doors aren’t quality made however, they are likely to let you down. A quality made and installed window or door will keep out the heat, the cold and noise. A great company will guarantee their workmanship along with the product they provide.
If your windows and doors are letting out the heat and along with it, your money, it may be time to make the investment in new, quality windows and doors. With hydro rates rising, the cost of this investment makes good financial sense. Jans Awning Products in Burlington can help you choose the right windows and doors for your home, as well as install them.
Slips and falls during the winter are a real hazard. Though taking a tumble under an ice-covered surface always catches us by surprise, being prepared for such a hazard can be as simple as a great railing. When your loved one isn’t available, let your railing catch you when you fall.
One in three seniors will experience a fall this winter. 40% of those seniors who fall this winter will suffer a hip fracture. People are more likely to experience falls at a home more than any other location. Don’t let it be at your home.
Why do falls happen?
Most falls occur while walking down stairs. Having a good solid railing in place greatly reduces the chances of falling. There are many reasons why falls occur:
- Reduced vision and hearing
- Poor balance
- Unsafe conditions
- Deceased muscle and bone strength
- Lack of coordination
If your front step doesn’t have a railing, now is the time to install one. There is no need to wait for that new deck or porch. Retro-fitting a railing will protect your family and friends, and the mailman will thank you.
Railings should be set at a specific height and be securely fastened to prevent instability and possible injury. Outdoor railings differ from those installed indoors. An outdoor railing must be able to endure the extreme temperatures and ice and snow that the Southern Ontario winter brings. A good railing, properly installed will provide you with years of maintenance-free reliability.
Installing a railing to your existing steps or walkway is best left to the professionals. Railings come in a multitude of shapes, sizes, colours, and materials. Your new railing might be made of cast iron, aluminum or might include glass. The professionals will offer a wide variety of railings to fix any situation or design preference. A great railing should be installed to protect from accidents, but that doesn’t mean it can’t look great as well. Railings should add character and design quality to your home or business. A railing can accent your patio or walkway and add visual appeal to your outdoor space.
In addition to having a railing system in place when the nasty weather rolls in, an even surface and good lighting will go a long way in preventing falls. While two handrails are optimal, having at least one well-installed quality railing will increase safety during the winter months.
Our professional staff is dedicated to creating new and exceptional solutions for your outdoor living space, and will assist you in choosing the proper railing products to enhance your home.
As winter approaches, many homeowners face the problem of condensation building up on their windows and patio doors. Oddly enough, much of the problems associated with condensation stem from advancements in building technology. If you’re having trouble with window condensation, the chances are that you are living in what is called a tight house. This is a house that cannot adequately breathe and moisture is trapped inside. Although older homes may actually cost more to heat, the house is more breathable, cleaner and more comfortable.
A little fog on the lower corners or window portions during the winter months is of little concern, but the excessive fog that blocks whole windows is a major headache. The excess water can run down and damage woodwork, wallpaper, paint or plaster. It’s a problem you should pay attention to and take very seriously. Noticing it on your windows or patio door is enough for concern, but you should be more worried about where you can’t see the condensation buildup. This excess humidity may be affecting the insulation in your attic whereby it freezes and then melts when warm weather comes. It may even be forming blisters beneath your siding and under your exterior paint.
All forms of water such as humidity, water vapor, moisture, and steam are present in varying degrees in nearly all air. The moisture in wet air tries to flow toward drier air and mix with it, which scientists describe as vapor pressure. Vapor pressure can act independently of the flow of the air. It can force moisture easily through wood, plaster, brick and cement. Vapor pressure is precisely what happens when moisture seeks to escape from the humid air usually found inside your home to the drier winter air outside.
Glass is one of the building materials that stop water vapors and vapor-seal insulation. It is designed specifically to stop the escape of water vapor and protect the insulation and your walls from the ravages of water. However, increased use of these moisture trapping materials has created the modern “tight” home where moisture created by bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms can no longer flow easily to the outside. This trapped effect keeps cold air outside and moisture in, so it is very easy to build up excessive and even harmful moisture levels in a home.
How to Reduce Humidity
David Bareuther, Associated Press Building editor states that there are only three ways to reduce humidity:
- Get to the source: Venting all gas burners, clothes dryers, etc., to the outdoors, including the use of kitchen or bathroom exhaust fans.
- Ventilation for winter: Since outside air usually contains less water vapor, it will dilute the humidity of this inside air. This takes place automatically in older houses through constant infiltration of outside air.
- Heat: The process of heating your home will reduce the relative humidity, providing its dry heat. It will counter-balance most of the moisture produced by modern living.
To test the humidity in your home, be sure to use an accurate instrument like a sling psychrometer.
|Outside Air Temperature||Inside Relative Humidity
70 F Indoor Temperature
|-20 degrees F or below||not over 15 percent|
|-20 degrees F to -10||not over 20 percent|
|-10 degrees F to 0||not over 25 percent|
|0 degrees F to 10||not over 30 percent|
|10 degrees F to 20||not over 35 percent|
|20 degrees F to 40||not over 40 percent|
Here are 7 practical steps to control condensation on your windows or patio door.
- Install storm windows or replacement windows with double or triple glazing.
- Shut off furnace humidifier and any other humidifying devices in your home.
- Be sure that louvers in attic or basement crawl spaces are open and that they are large enough.
- Run kitchen or other ventilating fans longer and more often than has been your custom.
- Open fireplace damper to allow easier escape for moisture.
- Air out your house a few minutes each day. Air out kitchen, laundry, and bathrooms during use or just the following use.
- If troublesome condensation persists, see your heating contractor about an outside air intake for your furnace; about venting of gas-burning heaters and appliances; or about the installation of ventilating fans.
Because of so many variables, a condensation problem can sometimes be very tough to solve and that’s why you may have to call in an expert to work on your problem if the simpler steps to reduce humidity doesn’t work. If you feel that the problem might be caused by your windows or doors, contact us and our team will be ready to help.
Awnings are a great way to create outdoor living space perfect for entertaining and enjoying fresh air. Whether shielding from sun, rain, wind or snow, an awning can make many types of weather conditions enjoyable. However, awnings call for particular safety attention, depending on what types of activities are going on in your outdoor space.
Barbecues and outdoor cooking:
It is important to consider proximity to barbecues and other outdoor cooking devices such as chimneys or fire pits. In Burlington, residents are allowed to have small, confined cooking fires if they are supervised at all times and used to cooking food on a grill. Outdoor fire pits, chimneys and other portable devices that are intended for backyard bonfires are not permitted without an open air burn permit.
That being said, even small cooking fires require special attention if they are in close proximity to an outdoor awning. Retractable awnings are a higher risk awning because they are made with a waterproof fabric. Suitable for both windows and doors, this type of awning is seen most commonly in backyards. Luckily, the retractable feature makes it easy to tuck away if you plan to BBQ or cook over a small fire. Fixed aluminum awnings are not at risk of catching fire from an unattended open flame. However, they can melt when exposed to extremely hot temperatures.
Prevention is key:
Preventing any accidents are top priority when it comes to fire safety. With this in mind, there are a couple of factors to consider before you choose to barbecue over an open flame.
1. If your awning is retractable, tuck it away before any fire or barbecue is lit.
2. Observe the premises. Are there bushes or trees that easily connect your fire or barbecue back to your awning or home. Make sure that the area is clear above and around your designated area.
3. Weather conditions are important. High winds make an open flame extremely risky, as well as extreme dryness, so try to avoid open air burning in these instances.
4. Smoke is dangerous too. Any fire in an enclosed space can create an uncomfortable environment, and breathing can become a real challenge. Ensure that smoke is not being captured under or around your awning to avoid the dangers of excessive smoke.
We don’t recommend barbecuing under an awning for one main reason and that is carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is an invisible and scentless gas that can become trapped under an awning. While you may think the open air would send the carbon monoxide into the atmosphere, it could be funneling it into your home through an open window. This is how several people died around Burlington during the ice storm of December 2013. People barbecued or ran generators in their garage, which ended up sending gas into the house’s crawlspaces, and eventually into bedrooms where people died in their sleep.
We at Jans Awning Products want you to have decades of enjoyment under your awnings. Contact us today to have us install an awning you can enjoy while you watch your food barbecue from a safe distance away.