Due to the weather, you can not always use your patio. Perhaps it is too hot or the rain has set in for the day. However, one way you can enjoy your patio all year round is to install a patio awning. Such awnings provide cover against the sun and rain so that you can be out on your patio regardless of what the weather is throwing at you.
At its most basic, a patio awning consist of a piece of strong canvas stretched over a solid frame. They can come in fixed or portable. Fixed awnings are attached permanently to the side of your home and reach out over the patio to provide the necessary protection. Portable look a little like tents and can be moved around or put away as you see fit.
As far as fixed patio awnings are concerned, you can buy retractable or permanent. A retractable patio awning can be retracted or extended depending on the circumstance. Depending on the type of awning, this can be achieved by cranking a handle or pressing a button. Permanent awnings simply stay attached and can not be retracted. This way they provide cover regardless of the actual weather.
High winds are dangerous for awnings. A strong gust can blow them over, tear the canvas or pull them off the side of the house. If you have a retractable awning then you should keep it in the retract position during storms or windy days. For fixed awnings you need to consider the winds that arise where you live and wether or not it is too dangerous to install an awning.