As much as it may seem like it, choosing your canopy cover material is not a one-fits-all scenario. You need to consider things like durability, water resistance, UV protection and fire resistance in order to make sure that you are getting the right cover for what you need. If you have already been searching for a canopy you may have seen reference to denier. This is a term that manufacturers use to provide an idea of the fabrics density. So simply put, the rule of thumb is the higher the denier the tougher the fabric is. When it comes to canopy top materials there are three main options; polyester, polyethylene, and vinyl.
Polyester Canopy Tops
Polyester is the most commonly used material in the instant canopies because it is durable and water resistant. Remember to check the denier of the fabric, the thicker the material the tougher it will be. Now I say that this material is water resistant not water proof, meaning that it can keep water at bay for a reasonable amount of time but it will eventually seep in. This material will provide UV protection but it will be minimal.
Polyethylene Canopy Tops
Polyethylene is going to be the most common material for carports and other semi-permanent structures. This is because the material is UV resistant and treated to ensure that it is waterproof. This material is also best suited on frames that are going to be put up and left up because it tends to wear out quickly on canopies that are taken up and down frequently. That’s why most instant canopies include water resistant canopies.
Vinyl Canopy Tops
Vinyl canopy tops are actually polyester fabric with a vinyl coating. The coating makes the top UV resistant, waterproof, and most are flame retardant. Vinyl tops can be very heavy, which is the true down fall of a vinyl canopy top.
Consider Canopy Top Colors
After you have decided on a canopy top material next is selecting the color. The lighter colored tops are often the most favored because they will not absorb heat, keeping you cooler underneath. The light canopy tops however will show the most dirt and stains. There are options for dark colored canopies which will hide dirt and stains but keep in mind on a hot day they will bring the temperature in you canopy up!