There are plenty of places in the continental U.S. where winter just isn’t much of an issue. You’ll usually feel the difference between winter and summer even in Southern California, but you certainly won’t be dealing with a great number of winterization issues. Life rolls on pretty much the same way, despite the average temperature dropping a few degrees.
But those of us who live in states like New Jersey face an entirely different reality. As winter approaches, there is a long list of tasks we have to accomplish in order to get ready. Our windows and insulation should probably be checked to make sure the heating system is going to be efficient. The furnace itself may need to be checked and subjected to routine maintenance before the cold season. Vehicles go through a winterization process, as do wardrobes.
Businesses also have to make adjustments. The harsh realities of below-freezing temperatures — and the possibility of significant snowfall any day of the week — simply can’t be ignored.
We get a lot of questions about awnings during the winter months. A lot of businesses have purchased and installed custom awnings for their business. Why? There are a couple of reasons. First, they enhance the appearance of a business entrance, drawing attention to it, and giving it that extra touch of class. Second, they actually do provide shelter for people coming and going from your business. It gives people a chance to shake out that umbrella, for example, before they step inside.
But when winter comes and the temperature dips, should businesses leave their awnings out in the cold? Or should they have them taken down and packed up until spring?
The answer is fairly simple. If you’ve purchased a well-built custom awning, and had it professionally installed by a reputable awning specialist in your area, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to leave it out through the winter.
Will it age faster? Will the awning eventually begin to show signs of wear from staying outside all year long? Undoubtedly so. Even the best-quality awning installations are ultimately consumable items that will need to be replaced. The difference is, if your awning is of high quality (and the company who installed it was a true professional), you should expect several seasons of use before you have to replace the awning.
Of course, there are some business owners who will choose to remove their awnings for the winter, in order to lengthen the lifespan of the awning. But the result is that you lose all the great benefits of having an awning for a significant portion of the year. Customers and employees are left without that transitional shelter, while the aesthetic benefits of the awning are also lost.
The preferable approach for most businesses is simply to let the awning weather the elements. If it needs to be replaced one or two years earlier, it’s worth the extra expense. Uninstalling and storing an awning for winter, keep in mind, also takes time and money. The bottom line is that when you hire a proper expert to build and install your custom awning, you shouldn’t have to worry about leaving it during the winter months.