How to Clean Your Fabric Shade Structure

How to Clean Your Fabric Shade Structure

If the thought of trying to clean your fabric shade structure already makes you feel exhausted, you’re not alone. But did you know that they aren’t difficult to wash? With a few simple steps, you can keep your awnings looking nice and clean year round.


The first step to cleaning your awning is to limit how dirty it becomes as much as possible. You can trim trees and shrubbery that grows nearby your shade structure and brush it free of leaves and debris that could discolor it. Avoid letting your fabric collect water and keep sunscreen and bug sprays away from it to prevent discoloring further. Also, the cleanliness of your frame can affect the fabric, so be sure to treat any rust spots.

How to Wash

When it’s time to clean your fabric shade structure, start by sweeping away any debris, dirt, and dust with a soft brush that will not scratch the fabric. Optionally, you can cover the area beneath your awning to keep it from getting dirty while you clean. Next, wet the entire fabric from a hose and apply a very small amount of a dish soap and water solution, about a quarter cup of soap to a gallon of water. You may also add a cup of bleach if there is a significant amount of mildew on your fabric. Pour the solution over your awning and let it soak for a few minutes, then you can rise it off and very gently scrub if need be. Remember to avoid any harsh abrasives or power washing because this could damage the fabric.

Fabric Types

There are special considerations depending on the type of fabric you have for your shade structure. Coated or laminated vinyl, as well as polyester laminates, work the best for the above cleaning method. They can also be hosed off between cleanings to reduce dirt buildup. If you need to remove the awning to clean it, remember to avoid dragging it across concrete and other rough surfaces that could scratch it. For acrylic fabrics, you can clean them on the frame. They can also be dry cleaned as long as they receive a water repellent treatment afterward. Because they are woven fabrics, they should be cleaned more regularly to keep dirt from settling into it. Be aware, acrylic is a heat sensitive material and should never be ironed, steamed, or machine dried.


Hoover Architectural is dedicated to making sure you receive the best quality shade structures. We manufacture all of our products with the best precision and care. We have two locations in South Florida and use innovative technology for all of our structures. For more information, visit our website or contact us at one of our South Florida locations.