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White backyard pergola with red burgundy fabric retractable shades

CableShade Nationwide provides the most durable and most beautiful canopies on the market.  These slide wire shades are made with Sunbrella Marina waterproof fabric, with cables and components that are rust-proof stainless steel.

slide wire shades, using waterproof Sunbrella fabrics


The Crank-Out Shade

The Crank-Out Shade

These retractable awnings are generally inexpensive. They are basically the same as those motor home attachment shade systems and often are seriously damaged or destroyed in a good gust of wind—even those with the more expensive ‘wind release’ mechanism. There is simply a lot of fabric surface without spaces for wind-release. These types awnings are very limited on how they can attach to the house – needing a high mount-point because the fabric extends on a downward slope. Another obstacle -- these retractable awnings roll up on a spindle and if the fabric has moisture the mildew sets in causing fabric rot. These can only extend up to about 11 ft. and are not available in widths beyond 20ft.

This style awning system is comprised of one large sewn-together fabric--therefore, like a large sail on a ship, they catch the wind with great force causing severe damage.

Canopies on Rollers

There are two or three manufacturers of these retractable canopy systems on the US market. They are far more decorative and versatile than the 'crank-out' models and can extend out more than double. These "on rollers" canopies and awnings are priced ranging from $17 per sq. ft. (not including installation) if grafted into an existing pergola/arbor -- up to even $57 per sq. ft. (plus installation) depending on the type of frame. These are perhaps the most elite shade-systems on the market, but do have some drawbacks ... the biggest of which (except maybe the price): these systems need continual service. Customers in remote areas are often out of range for such service. Even though under strong warranty the 'on rollers" canopy customer is generally responsible to un-assemble and ship back to the manufacturer for repairs or replacement.

Because of so many moving parts (rollers and spring-mechanisms) these systems are easily damaged in freak storms and unexpected snows. The repair costs can be very expensive.

White fabric retractable canopies

Plain & Simple Pergola or Trellis/Arbor Structures

These are the most common shade systems - usually wood or vinyl frames with decorative slats on top. The slats can be sparce or crowded but typically there is only about 25% shade at best (as pictured to the left). There are many "pergola builders" in each city -- each with their own slant on style. About 1 in 10 homes have a Pergola or Trellis on their deck/patio. Most find they’ve spent a good chunk of change to build these decorative structures only to find they provide little or no shade.

This is where CableShade's colorful canopies on cables can benefit. For an affordable price our canopies can be custom made to fit under the arbors of your existing Pergola as well as between them, depending on the pergola design.

The Fixed Roof/Awning  

These fixed-roof shade systems can range from decorative and quite expensive, to less expensive but not very durable. Unless built very sturdy a good wind and/or especially a heavy snow-load can buckle them. In snowy area's of the country this type of awning requires a high mounting point to accommodate a downward slope enough to shed rain/snow. Therefore to mount on an eve-fascia part of the house is impossible. 

On one hand it is nice to not to have to shovel snow under these fixed-roof systems in the winter.  Yet on the other hand that deck/patio is under perma-frost all winter because it is always shaded and therefore unusable for several months of the year, without any retractable option to let the sun through. 

The Fixed Roof/Awning

The Louvered-Roof Awnings

The Louvered-Roof Awnings

This type of shade-system can be quite decorative, but they are among the most expensive. These are limited in how far they can span (about 16 ft. maximum) and, like the canopies on rollers, there are a lot of moving parts. Warranties are limited - depending on severity of storm damage. These are not highly recommended in heavy snow or freeze areas. For instance, should someone flip the power switch to maneuver the slats during the below-freezing temperatures with ice build-up this can cause very expensive damage--not covered under warranty.