Shade On A Switch: The Pros And Cons Of Choosing A Retractable Cassette Awning

Home & Garden Blog

It goes without saying that Australia's brutal summer climate means sources of shade are worth their weight in gold, and homeowners across the country have awnings installed in their gardens, porches and patios to escape the worst of the heat and sunlight. However, a permanently fixed awning may not be so welcome in the cooler winter months; for this reason, retractable cassette awnings are a popular choice.

These automatic awnings are stored within a protective, wall-mounted cassette when not in use and are automatically unfurled or unrolled when activated, providing wide areas of shade in a manner of seconds. However, while cassette awnings can be a great investment with many advantages, they also have a few disadvantages when compared to more traditional fixed awnings. If you're considering purchasing a cassette awning, you should take full account of these pros and cons before deciding whether one of these devices is right for your needs.

What are the advantages of retractable cassette awnings?

Adjustable shade: As previously mentioned, cassette awnings can be retracted when not needed, allowing you to maximise sunlight on cloudy or rainy days. However, most cassette awnings also have adjustable levels of opening; this is useful for creating smaller amounts of shade on sunny yet cool days and creating larger amounts for the hottest days or when you have visitors.

Long life: Since cassette awnings contain moving parts and electronic components, you might assume they have a shorter working lifespan than fixed awnings. However, since the awning itself is stored safely within the cassette when not in use, and the cassette itself is made of tough, highly weather-resistant materials, they tend to take far less damage from the elements than fixed awnings. As well as minimising the chances of your awning suffering weather damage, this also prevents your awning fabric from fading in prolonged sunlight, and protects it from falling branches and roof tiles that may badly damage a fixed awning.

Self supporting: Cassette awnings use folding reinforcing bars to provide stiffness and strength to their awnings. This precludes the need for vertical support columns commonly found on fixed awnings, freeing up more valuable shaded space under your awning.

Easy installation: While assembling and erecting a fixed awning can be a difficult and time-consuming endeavour, cassette awnings are much easier to install: the cassette is simply screwed into the wall or eave where you wish to attach your awning, with no assembling of components required.

What about the disadvantages of retractable cassette awnings?

Price: As with so many things in life, extra convenience and versatility comes at a price, and cassette awnings tend to cost significantly more than fixed awnings of comparable size.

Vulnerable to unexpected bad weather: Retracting your awning before bad weather arrives may seem simple enough, but if bad weather should appear while your awning is extended and you are indisposed or not home, the awning can take a severe beating from wind and weather that a strong fixed awning would shrug off.

Expensive repairs: Cassette awnings are manufactured to exacting tolerances and should not encounter significant mechanical problems. However, if the worst comes to the worst, these relatively complicated devices can be difficult and expensive to have repaired.

To learn more about cassette awnings, visit a company like Patioworld NSW Pty Ltd.


9 February 2017

Creating A Stylish And Functional Kitchen On A Budget

The kitchen is often referred to as the heart of the home, and as someone who enjoys cooking, I spend a lot of time in the kitchen and need it to be functional and easy to maintain. In the past, I sacrificed style for functionality, but as I use my kitchen frequently, I wanted the space to be aesthetically pleasing and enjoyable to spend time in. I began reading interior design and home improvement books to gain some inspiration for transforming my kitchen without breaking the bank, and I now have a kitchen that's stylish and does what I need it to do. The kitchen is often overlooked when it comes to home decor, so I started this blog to share what I've learned with others who don't want to spend time cooking in an ugly, outdated room. I hope you find my blog useful.