Most of us aren’t experts at designing commercial awnings , but naturally we all want the very best our budget can provide. Here are some important factors to consider when you’re planning a commercial awning.
Start by consulting a pro.
Why waste time researching the myriad options that exist and trying to understand the variables associated with each one? Teaming up with an expert puts you on the fast track to creating commercial awnings that really work, in every sense of the word.
The right professional awning company will partner with you every step of the way to design and produce your awning. They’ll make sure you’re asking the right questions and they’ll introduce you to all the latest options, whether you’re going for a look that’s solidly traditional or says you’re on the cutting edge.
Identify your awning’s purpose.
Your primary goal may be functional, but commercial awnings offer definite marketing benefits and they’re a visual component of your building.
Determine your awning’s functional requirements.
The “best” depends on what commercial awnings are expected to do – choices such as retraction, attached or free-standing, seasonal or permanent, size and shape, appropriate fabrics or metal coverings, your building’s ability to support the awning and how long you want the awning to last.
Check local restrictions.
Knowing about limitations up front will save you from heartburn and frustration later.
Contemplate your graphic design.
Anything goes, with the right company and digital printing.
Pick a company with the best reputation.
You deserve personalized customer service and a vendor that stands behind their work, one that has experience working with your type of building and locale.
Pick an all-in-one company.
A company that’s knowledgeable about every step of designing commercial awnings, including installation, will be able to give you the best “insider” recommendations that match your needs and budget. Their staff should be highly trained and experienced using the latest technology and techniques.
Choosing the best commercial awnings depends on your needs and preferences. You’ll get exactly what you want by choosing the best commercial awning company.
An awning is a functional structure, but it’s also a strong visual element and a valuable marketing tool. Awning designs should maximize each of these opportunities, so you want to avoid doing anything that might prevent that.
Awnings can be quite complex, so not surprisingly there are a number of things good awning designs should avoid. Considering these factors will help you create the best looking and best performing awning:
- Don’t create a design that will look out of place, either because it doesn’t fit the architectural style of the building or it doesn’t match the thematic style of your business.
- Don’t inadvertently create poor quality or dysfunctional graphics. If your colors don’t contrast sharply enough your graphics won’t stand out and lettering in particular may be difficult to read, especially from any distance. Digital printing supports “any image, anywhere” creativity with superior, crisp results and custom colors that can exactly match the rest of your business look.
- Don’t select light colors if you’re in a “dirty” location such as near a bus stop.
- Retractable awnings are not all-weather structures, they’re meant only to provide shade from the sun. If you’re looking for protection from a broader range of weather elements – rain, snow, wind – you’ll want a tougher permanent structure.
- Multi-season weather protection also means you’ll want to avoid acrylic fabrics for your awning designs. Acrylics are great to supply shade, but because the fabric is woven it isn’t entirely water-resistant.
- You cannot exceed the building’s capacity to support your awning. If the awning designs you’re contemplating are too wide, the awning will need additional legs to support it along the outside edge.
- Don’t settle for low-end awning designs if you’re hoping for long-term usage. Get the best you can afford. Adding a protective coating to your finished awning can extend its life, too.
- Don’t position drive-through or other portico awnings so low that vehicles can’t comfortably pass beneath. Installing a height restriction bar ahead of the awning is a good idea.
Avoid making mistakes altogether by consulting a reputable awning professional to assist with your awning designs.
A restaurant awning provides both style and function. The right awning can improve exterior appearance and make customers more comfortable. Equally important, it can support your restaurant’s branding and name recognition and attract attention from potential new customers. There are several factors to consider when choosing a restaurant awning.
Start with function then pick the styling details.
Restaurant awnings are typically covered in fabric or metal. No matter what you choose, your awning will need to be stable in any weather, water repellant and UV resistant. The assembly, or framing, attaches your awning to your building, so the best choice depends on location and your building’s structure.
There are four types of assemblies:
- Retractable, which can be manually or remotely operated.
- Mapes, suspended canopies typically constructed of metal or a clear polycarbonate material.
- Stand-alone, for outdoor dining and special event areas.
- Umbrellas, festive and shady for sidewalk or patio dining.
Quality is critical to ensure a long-lasting, cost-effective investment. Choose a well-known manufacturer that meets only the highest industry standards for construction and installation.
Look for lots of options.
Awnings come in many widths, projections, fabrics, finishes and mounting designs.
Since your restaurant awning creates an impression and promotes your business, use a contractor that offers full design and graphics capability and uses the latest precision production technologies that allow any image to be applied where. Ask to see their portfolio and detailed renderings, to get ideas and see what various options will look like.
Choose a company that can do your job from start to finish.
A company that provides full project management from site surveying through design, production and installation will ensure continuity and efficiency. You should expect:
- Professional advice to select the best-looking and best-performing restaurant awning.
- Personalized service, regardless of your business or project size.
- Staff that are highly skilled and experienced with your type of project.
Doing your homework will help choose a restaurant awning that will give you pride and performance for years to come. So ask if your contractor provides professional-quality photos you can use for marketing.
Photo Credit: aspermoller via Flickr
If your school is located where it can be especially hot outside, it makes sense to provide plenty of shade for students when they’re outdoors. Well-executed shade systems can do more than just give your kids a break from direct sun, protecting costly playground equipment from the elements and potentially-destructive UV radiation all year round.
Awning designs can sometimes be deceptive. At first glance they may all appear the same, but in fact there are differences, some minor and some significant. With every awning, the quality factor is certainly more than “skin deep.”
Understanding the strengths and limitations of various awning designs can facilitate an architect’s work. Knowing what’s available and which materials or performance features to spec allows you be the most creative while still ensuring your awnings are secure and durable just as designed.
Start with a clear definition of the awning’s role.
Knowing what you expect the awning to accomplish will help pinpoint the best awning designs for any given project. You may want it to:
- Enhance branding.
- Increase visibility to passersby or motorists.
- Clearly identify the building’s entrance.
- Protect visitors or customers from the elements.
- Expand sales area to capture outdoor space seasonally or year round.
Most awning designs provide multiple benefits.
Next identify functional requirements.
- Size and shape — how the awning can and should blend or contrast with the rest of the building.
- Stationary versus remote or manual retraction capability.
- Free-standing or attached placement. If you’re adding an awning to an existing building, it must be able to support the awning securely.
- Seasonal or permanent installation.
- Desired lifespan – temporary, a few years, many years.
- Local building codes or other restrictions.
- Probable cleaning frequency, which can affect your materials choices.
Finally, the fun part.
Awning designs are there for everyone to see, and an awning is an important architectural element. Fortunately there are plenty of options that offer high performance and also allow you to display your architectural artistry.
A top-quality awning manufacturer will be able to produce virtually anything you want. You can incorporate small, large or all-over graphics, logos, thematic or even custom colors. You can choose from a variety of fabrics or metals to create a unique look, whether you’re going for dramatic impact or simply protection from the rain.
Understanding all your functional and appearance options will point you toward awning designs that let your creativity shine and meet all your project’s defined goals.
Photo Credit: Will Scullin via Flickr
The American Cancer Society has mounted an all-out campaign to get schools to incorporate more shade for kids when they’re outside, to combat the potential of skin cancer. Of course providing additional shade can generate many benefits for schools and students beyond improved health.
Certainly shade systems can help keep students comfortable in hot or inclement weather. But they can also extend the usefulness of outdoor areas for year-round fresh air and exercise, sports, even classroom-style instruction.
Shade systems can cover playgrounds and equipment, eating areas, bleachers, ball fields, tennis courts and other seasonal sports fields. They can also provide covered areas for special events such as graduation or the annual school carnival. Every school’s needs are different, though, so there’s no one-size-fits-all solution.
The design and functional features you choose should be specifically tailored for your facility and usage plans. Naturally you’ll want something that looks attractive and will assure long-lasting performance and durability.
The Cancer Society recommends conducting a “shade audit” to determine what you need and what type of shade systems would work best. You should consider potential uses and requirements such as:
- Whether your shading structures will need to provide only protection from the sun or withstand rain, snow, hail, wind or other multi-season performance factors that could affect structural integrity.
- Whether you need a single shade structure or several sections.
- Whether your shade systems will be permanent or seasonal, and how long you expect them to last.
- Special accessories such as side walls, windows or lighting for night use.
- Handicap accessibility.
Some shade systems are available in kits for do-it-yourself assembly, but you can obtain exactly the configuration you want with custom design and manufacturing. Be sure to get advice from an expert – a company experienced in working with schools – to assess your situation and offer recommendations that make sense and will assure the most cost-effective solutions to meet your school’s needs.
Armed with the facts and the right awning company as your working partner, you’ll be able to create the best-looking, most functional and most cost-effective solution to your awning needs. But how do you know you’re choosing the right awning company?
Here are some important factors to consider.
The right awning company will work with you hand-in-hand.
You should expect personalized assistance from your first call through installation. Real people that answer the phone and happily answer your questions – all your questions, whether this is your first awning project or your 90 th .
The right company will guide you through every step of the process, with detailed information about awning design and performance options, so you can make the best choices and avoid making mistakes you’ll regret later on.
The right awning company can back up their talk with knowledge and experience.
Choose a company with demonstrated expertise working with your type and size of project and your type of physical location. They should have experience designing and manufacturing awning products that have to perform well in your local weather conditions, too.
They should employ highly-skilled graphic designers and production experts and have the state-of-the-art equipment necessary to complete your project to perfection. An “all-in-one” awning company streamlines communication to save you time and eliminate mistakes or delays.
Choose a well-established company with an outstanding reputation and longtime employees, which speaks to the team’s expertise as well as the company’s quality. They should have a showroom where you can personally examine materials and functional options, and offer facility tours, so you can see how they work.
Ask about whether installation crews have been specially trained for safety as well as proper working techniques.
Don’t take their word for it.
It pays to check references, because choosing the right awning company is your first step toward obtaining precisely the awning you need and envision.
They’ll give you knowledgeable advice tailored specifically for your project. And they’ll be there throughout the production and installation process, to ensure you wind up with exactly what you had in mind.
Any restaurateur knows how difficult it can be to remain profitable. Trends change at the drop of a hat, and even the most loyal patrons can wander off. You need to do everything you can to maximize opportunities, not just to retain your existing clientele but to grow your business.
Adding restaurant Patio awnings can help you generate more revenue.
Even though trends come and go, dining al fresco is a perennial favorite. Restaurant awnings make that possible, at times and in locations where diners might not otherwise be comfortable.
Adding awnings lets you make the most of available outdoor space to expand seating capability. Restaurant awnings can add a touch of sophistication, accentuate a casual gathering atmosphere or provide a cozy, elegant or romantic setting.
They’re versatile and durable. They can range from umbrellas to large canopied structures that capture space on your sidewalk, courtyard, patio, garden or lawn. Patrons can enjoy the view or people-watch, comfortably enjoying fresh air and the surroundings as well as their table companions.
Awnings protect diners from hot sun, rain, breeze, and curtain walls provide extra insulation. Add sidewalls and a little air conditioning or heat, and in all but the coldest climates you’ve got three-season outdoor service capability. You can even go all-out and install restaurant awnings that let you comfortably use outdoor eating areas year-round.
It’s like having your own onsite catering hall.
If your place is often crowded, outdoor seating can relieve the pressure without turning anyone away.
Restaurant awnings promote your business.
Prominently displaying your name or logo increases visibility to pedestrians and drivers. People walking by can see and smell your food, perhaps deciding to stop in or check out your menu for a later visit.
Why squander nice weather that could help you generate more business? Why not capture additional seating opportunities even when weather isn’t so nice? With restaurant awnings, you can have it both ways. So now’s the time to start thinking specifically about adding an awning – or perhaps more than one kind – to boost your seating and sales.
Photo Credit: Malcolm Tredinnick via Flickr
Adding an awning can be an excellent business investment. You’ll be able to make the smartest decisions about awning design when you’re armed with knowledge about your options.
First of all, why are you planning an awning? Your goal could be to:
- Enhance the exterior appearance of your business.
- Provide weather protection for patrons or building visitors.
- Increase business visibility and advertising.
- Increase usability of outdoor space.
Knowing what you want to accomplish – and that could include several or all of the points noted above — is a good start.
The next step is to consider how your awning will function. It might have a fixed, permanent position, be manually or remotely retractable, or serve as a stand-alone canopy or umbrella. Will it be lit, either from the front or back?
The best awning design for you will also depend on desired lifespan – whether your awning will be temporary, serve for a few years or last many years. Regardless, every awning should be reliably stable, weather-proof and UV-resistant.
Now you can get creative.
This part’s more fun, because there are so many options to help you achieve an awning design that’s unique to your business. Getting professional assistance can ensure you don’t miss any opportunities to make the most of your awning, since it can perform for you in several functional and stylistic ways. You’ll want to think about:
- Incorporating official colors and graphics.
- Fabric choices or metal options.
- What width and projection will work best.
- Finishes and mounting designs.
Choose a company that has a top-notch, well-established reputation, one that can give you sound, experienced advice about awning design. The right company should offer the latest graphics and manufacturing capabilities and provide a team of professionals to assist you through the entire production process including installation.
Insist on superior quality and personalized service every step of the way. That way, you’ll be confident you’re getting the best awning design and that your project will be completed precisely as you want it, in the shortest time possible.
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