Sun Shades vs. Awnings: Which is Better for Your Arizona Home?

Graber 47706 Solar Shades RS17-V1

When it comes to upgrading the comfort and appearance of your outdoor space, the question of whether to go with awnings or sun shades will almost invariably come up. And, as with any binary choice, it helps to both know your options and to compare and contrast the various benefits of each.

In this informative post, join us as we explain the primary differences between sun shades and awnings, and offer a rundown of the different advantages of each.

Sun Shades: What Are They?

Sun Shades—otherwise known as Solar Screens—are one of the best ways to increase the value of your home. Made from tightly-woven fabric that’s been coated to be slightly opaque and to block out heat, solar shades are a convenient way to shade an outdoor space (such as a patio) that is frequently exposed to the sun. Besides blocking light, sun shades can also reduce glare and protect you (and your furniture and carpets) from harmful UV rays.

The Benefits of Arizona Sun Shades

Sun shades offer many benefits. They’ll block out excessive heat, while allowing some degree of light to enter, based on the ‘solar shade percentage’—the openness of the weave. Sun shades also provide privacy. Since the fabric is slightly opaque—again, based on the solar shade percentage—they can prevent people from being able to see you from the other side of your shades. Finally, because solar shades are made of fabric, there are a wide variety of solar shade swatches available. You can work with a manufacturer to find one that matches the aesthetic of your home.

Fun fact: According to the U.S. Department of Energy, sun shades can reduce solar heat by up to 77% or more year-round. With an average of 299 sunny days per year, installing sun shades in Arizona is a smart investment that can save you money on your energy bills.

Retractable Awnings: What Are They?

Easily confused with canopies, awnings are external shading structures that retract. Easily adjustable and customizable, awnings are an easy and convenient way to shade a roof or patio from the sun up above. Awnings can be either manually adjusted—using a removable hand crank—or automatic—via a tubular motor and remote control. Either way, they’re easy to open and close, and, when made from quality materials, require minimal upkeep to last.

The Benefits of Retractable Awnings in Arizona

Patio awnings come with a variety of benefits. For one, they’re extremely easy to operate, and can even be retrofitted to open and close at the touch of a button. They’re also exceptionally durable. Built to withstand direct exposure to high heat for years on end, they’ll last well beyond your manufacturer’s warranty. Moreover, just like sun shades, patio awnings come in a variety of colors and styles. You’ll have no problem finding one to match the appearance of your home—or to fit the style or rules your HOA might require.

Sun Shades vs. Awnings: What’s the Right Choice For Your Home?

Still not sure whether sun shades or awnings are best for your home? Compare and contrast their top differences below.

Sun shades are unique in that they can cover most patio openings–making them an efficient and convenient way to control the temperature and provide ample shade inside an otherwise open patio. Unlike awnings, they can also increase privacy and keep out dust, pests, and other critters–creating a semi-indoor space that’s without the downsides of a traditional outdoor patio.

Awnings, on the other hand, are great for providing retractable overhead shade without obstructing the view. This means you can use them only when you need to—opening them when the sun is unpleasant and closing them when it isn’t. For homeowners who want a convenient and versatile way to shade their outdoor space, retractable awnings are a great option.

Get Your Sun Shades Or Retractable Awnings

Interested in installing sun shades or a retractable awning in Arizona? We can help.

Superior Sun Solutions is a family-owned and operated business that specializes in high-quality awnings and sun screen installations in North Arizona. With over 20 years of experience and thousands of installations under our belt, we’re Arizona’s premier choice when it comes to professional sun screen and awning installations.

Contact us to learn more about our top-tier products, and find out how we can help make your outdoor living space a second home for you!


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