What Features Should a Canopy Have?

Nearly all structures carried at Portable Garage Depot and Shelters of America are canopies, including both permanent canopies like carports and portable garages and temporary structures like pop-up canopies and party tents. But, what characteristics should a canopy have? As a canopy essentially protects your vehicle – or you – outdoors, it needs to meet certain expectations. For a permanent shelter like a carport, this includes:

• Being made from heavy-duty polyethylene. Medium-duty polyethylene and vinyl are generally considered too weak for repeated outdoor use and will become worn sooner. The only exception to this rule is an all-metal carport.
• Being waterproof. If water can seep through a canopy or rust the metal frame, the structure will not sufficiently protect your vehicle, be it daily protection or seasonal storage.
• Being UV resistant. UV rays can damage the surface of any vehicle left outdoors. On a minor level, this means the paint color may fade. More serious results include cracking any exterior or interior plastic parts.
• Being rot and mildew resistant. A canopy shouldn’t have mold and mildew building up on it, and, likewise, it should prevent mold, mildew, and dry rot from forming underneath on the vehicle.
• Being rip-stop or rip-proof. Both qualities are essentially the same thing, but the canopy shouldn’t rip unless hit by a severe natural disaster, like a tornado or hurricane. Ordinary rain and snow storms shouldn’t rip or damage the canopy material.
• Being fire resistant. Not all outdoor canopies are, but it’s a bonus if the canopy meets California fire codes for fire retardant properties.

As far as temporary canopies like pop-up and party tents are concerned, these generally have the waterproof and UV resistant properties, as they need to do these things temporarily. But, being made from polyester, the material is more prone to ripping, which is why the structure is temporary instead of permanent.