5 Factors to Consider When Choosing Restaurant Awnings for Your Business

When purchasing an awning, a business needs to carefully consider a variety of things. Since an awning is often going to be the first thing that a potential customer sees, the awning must be aesthetically pleasing. At the same time, it needs to be easy to maintain and able to last several years without any issues.

Fixed Awning or Retractable?

No one option is better than the other. It will be dependent on the business.

If a restaurant relies on having people seated outside for the bulk of the year, then a fixed awning may be the best option. A fixed awning is a much more permanent and rigid construction. This means that staff will not have to be constantly moving it around.

A retractable awning is much more temporary. A retractable awning may be a much better solution for those businesses that utilize their outside space for short times of the year e.g. because of harsher weather, or in tourist destinations that may not get regular customers outside of the tourist season.

The Style Of The Awning

The awning is part of the brand of the restaurant it is sited outside.

The style of the awning should be a reflection of the type of food being sold within that restaurant. For example, BBQ restaurants may benefit from a more Texan-style aesthetic to the awning. A restaurant that deals heavily in tapas and food from Southern Europe may see more benefit from a Mediterranean style of awning.

When a restaurant is purchasing a restaurant awning, they need to choose something that will enhance the aesthetics of their property. They need to think about the style and whether it really is giving off the best possible image of their business.

Size Of The Awning

This is the easiest thing to think about.

A restaurant will need to choose an awning size that covers all of the space that they want to use as their seating area. This should be fairly easy to measure.

A restaurant will have to remember that if they undersize the awning, then there may be portions of their patio that their customers will not be able to seat.

It is also important that the awning is not oversized. This could end up encroaching on public spaces, or the space owned by other businesses, and cannot be installed.

Restaurant Awning Materials

For the most part, this is going to be a personal choice. This means the restaurant is thinking about the colors of their restaurant awning, which can severely limit the number of material options that they have available.

Generally speaking, a restaurant will opt for one of the following materials for their awnings:

  • Metal
  • Plastic
  • Synthetic fabrics
  • Natural canvas

It would be wise for a restaurant to choose a fabric that has been specially designed for use in a restaurant. This is because they tend to be treated for the rigors of regular use e.g. UV protection, water resistance, and the ability to keep mold at bay. In many cases, they should also be fire-resistant.

A lot of the choices will have to factor in where the restaurant is based.

Other Considerations

Most restaurant awnings will be nothing more than a simple piece of material covering an area. However, there are some businesses that may wish to have more elements installed in their awning. This can include:

  • Fans for awnings in hot and humid climates
  • Heaters so the awning can continue to be used during the colder months of the year
  • Lighting for those awnings that are likely to be used at night

When a retractable awning is used, it may be worth it for a restaurant to invest in a motorized awning. This can save staff time retracting the awning each evening.


Restaurants will need to carefully consider a restaurant awning that they have installed on their property. Opting for the wrong style of an awning could severely hamper a business. It may even result in higher maintenance bills. Restaurants are advised to work with experienced awning retailers to ensure that they end up with the perfect awning to represent their business.

What is the Difference Between a Canopy and an Awning?

Awnings and canopies are both structures designed to block weather elements such as sun and rain, but awnings are permanent and canopies are not. Awnings are generally attached to houses and hang over a patio, whereas canopies can be put up anywhere and taken down after use. Though some awnings can be retractable, they can’t be completely removed like canopies can.

The rest of this article will teach you about the different ways you can use an awning vs. a canopy and help you decide which one is right for you.

Is it better to use an awning or a canopy?

If you’re looking for something to cover your patio but can’t decide whether to use an awning or canopy, it’s best to think about how often you will use it. If you just need a cover every now and then, it might make more sense to get a canopy since they cost less. According to Home Advisor, awnings generally cost $1300-$4200, whereas canopies only cost around $45-$250.

If you want to have a cover more often and are willing to spend the extra money, an awning could be better. Awnings are less of a hassle since you don’t have to worry about taking them up and down as you do with a canopy. There are also retractable awning options so you can still “put away” your cover if you don’t want it up all the time.

If you live in somewhere that’s often hot and sunny, an awning is a great purchase because it protects the inside of the house as well as the patio. A study by the Center for Sustainable Building Research at the University of Minnesota found that window awnings can reduce the need for cooling energy by 26% in hot climates. That means they may also reduce the cooling bill, which will save you money in the long run.

How easy is it to add an awning to a house?

An awning can be added to any house by mounting it to an overhang, roof, or exterior wall. The process involves measuring where the awning will be placed, finding the studs to support it, then adding the mounts and putting the awning into place. On average the process only takes about 2 hours, but could be longer if the awning is more complex.

If an awning seems like a better fit for you, you may be wondering where to start. It’s important to make sure you are choosing the right style. Retractable awnings are great because they can be put away, which protects them from storm damage and means they require less maintenance. However, stationary awnings tend to last longer and could be better if you want your awning to stay up all the time.

Are canopies easy to put up?

A standard pop up canopy shouldn’t be difficult to assemble. There will be instructions with whatever canopy you buy, and generally all you have to do is widen the frame and pull out the legs which hold the canopy up. Some canopies will require you to put the tarp on before assembling as well. It helps to have a couple people for assembly, but isn’t required and can be done alone.

Canopies are perfect for outdoor events where awnings won’t be available for use. If you’re in a backyard or at a park or beach, canopies are great for blocking sun and rain. Don’t let the thought of putting up and taking down your canopy deter you from getting one—they will make spending time outside more enjoyable and are plenty worth it in the end.