Yawning Under an Awning, Part 2

Last week, we covered the many benefits of adding an awning to your home in Vallarta. To recap, it will increase the amount of liveable space in your home or condo since you can use the area outside during the hours of direct sun. It can reduce the cost of your electricity bills by keeping your interiors cooler without having to use your air conditioners or fans as much. And it will most likely increase the aesthetics and resale value of your home.

We also covered the different types of awnings available, from vertical to retractable. In today’s article, we will focus on making sure you know what to look for when selecting the frame, motor, and cassette.

Many types of awnings can be operated manually by crank or automatically by a motor. Motorized awnings are raised and lowered with a button, remote control or even a sensor. The most expensive option is sensor-triggered. The benefits though are worth considering. You can program your awning to retract when it gets windy and to extend when in direct sun or light rain.

Check to ensure the mechanism and frame (which supports the awning) are a material that does not rust. Aluminum is a great solution but has the downside of being lighter in weight than galvanized steel. If you live in a windy area, you may be better off with steel, even though it has a higher likelihood to corrode.

If you go with a motor, ask the type. Ensure that it is durable, requires little and easy maintenance, and is quiet. If you have the advantage of hearing it in operation, it will ensure you do not end up with one that is noisier than you expect.

Ask about the types of cassettes available. A cassette houses the motor and fabric when the awning is in the retracted position. If possible, opt for a full (closed) cassette instead of a semi or open cassette. This protection will ensure your awning lasts longer.

With all the smart technology available today, you can program your awnings to work via an app on your smartphone or through a virtual home assistant. Other options available include integrated lighting, heating systems, and skylights.

The different segments of awnings usually have separate warranties. It is always a good idea to review and understand the terms of the warranty before finalizing your awning purchase. Make sure to get it in writin and in Spanish, so that you have a better chance of having it honored here in Mexico

Next week we will tackle the cover! With hundreds of patterns and colors available, if you want to get the most from your awning investment, I will share which ones are your best bet!

Are you looking for an awning to get more value out of your home in Mexico? Contact me, and I would be happy to put you in touch with a few companies in the area.

Sheryl Novak
Sheryl Novak is an expat Canadian who has owned a home in Mexico for over ten years. She is the owner of SOLutions Mexico – the online furniture store for your home in Mexico and The Furniture Store by SOLutions Mexico, a brick and mortar show store in Bucerias. She is considered the expert on sourcing all styles of furniture for all sizes of budgets, in Mexico.