Safety Fabrics

Quality not Quantity: Not All Specialty Fabrics are the Same

Quality not Quantity: Not All Specialty Fabrics are the Same

When it comes to specialty fabrics, it’s important to know that not all textiles are created equally. In fact, specialty fabrics are created for a variety of industries and not everyone uses the same process, materials, or customer service when it comes to supplying textiles.

Using a quality textile that’s produced with care may cost just a little extra, but that fabric will last and save you in the long run; you won’t have to replace so often. For example in an awning fabric, you want to be sure the textile you use in your project is designed to withstand the elements, is UV ray resistant, mold and mildew resistant, and waterproof.  If you choose a fabric that is mass produces and doesn’t have the aforementioned qualities, your project’s textile may not last as long.

Remember fabrics in the marine, upholstery, outdoor, and auto industries are designed with unique properties that make them last within their respective environments. For example, in the marine industry, boats use specialty fabrics for shade covers, boat covers, and upholstery.

Marine fabrics are typically designed to withstand the sun, rain, ocean or fresh water spray, and the wear and tear of watersport activities. Some marine fabrics are UV ray resistant and waterproof but may lack that mildew and mold resistance which is important for boats. That’s why finding a supplier with knowledge of your industry’s needs is essential. After all, you don’t want your project to fall apart or your customer to be upset.

Another important aspect of a quality fabric is the customer service that it is backed by. Some fabrics suppliers may not have the knowledge you need to support your project’s specifications, or they may not be fast in responding to your queries. Whatever the case, it’s important to know that your textile supplier is efficient, responsive, knowledgeable, and willing to help.

Now that you know a little more about specialty fabrics and why using quality textiles matters, let us know how we can help you with your next project by visiting us at or giving us a call at 1-800-444-4701.

Posted by Vaughan Brothers in Auto Fabrics, Awning & Tent Fabrics, Canvas Fabrics, Hardware & Accessories, Marine Fabrics, Outdoor/Bag Fabrics, Safety Fabrics, Screen Fabrics, Tarp Fabrics, Upholstery Fabrics, 0 comments
Solar Heat Gain: What is it?

Solar Heat Gain: What is it?

It’s summer. It’s sunny. It’s hot. Well, at least, it’s supposed to be… But even when it’s not sweltering outside, that doesn’t mean your home or office building isn’t absorbing the sun’s heat. Simply put, solar heat gain is how much heat is absorbed by your structure from the sun’s light.

Basically, the hotter the day, the more heat your building will absorb. The heat is transferred into your building through windows, doors, and cracks. Scientifically, and according to the US Department of Energy:

“Solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC)is the fraction of solar radiation admitted through a window, door, or skylight — either transmitted directly and/or absorbed, and subsequently released as heat inside a home.”

So, what this means for homeowners and businesses is that during the summer, it’s important to have the right curtain fabrics, awnings fabrics, and other shade structures covering your windows and doorways to help reduce solar heat gain. For example, using a textile specifically designed to withstand the sun – like our Brun Tuff Vinyl – helps reduce solar heat gain.

Particularly for businesses, solar heat gain can increase energy bills and strain the load on the air conditioning unit. Restaurants and hotels with large and numerous windows and doorways are even more susceptible to solar heat gain than just a regular home; the more windows and doors, the more sunlight gets through. That’s why it’s important to use shade structures, drop screens, curtains, and other shade products.

Specialty fabrics, including our Sunforger Canvas, are specially developed to be resistant to uv rays, mold and mildew, and more. Specialty textiles are created to withstand the harsh elements, including the constant onslaught of the sun’s summer rays.

Now that you know a little more about solar heat gain and why it’s important to use shade structures and the right fabrics, let us know how we can help you with your next project by visiting us at or giving us a call at 1-800-444-4701.

Posted by Vaughan Brothers in Awning & Tent Fabrics, Safety Fabrics, 1 comment
Fire Retardant Fabrics: How do they Work?

Fire Retardant Fabrics: How do they Work?

Fire Retardant Fabrics: How do they Work?

What is a fire-retardant fabric? How do they even work? Well, for starters, fabrics that can withstand the burning flames of a fire are developed with special coatings and fibers designed to take the heat.

You might be wondering, where would you want to use fire retardant fabric? Well here’s a quick list of things you might see these textiles:

  • Hospital Curtains
  • Tents
  • Awnings
  • Canopies
  • Bags
  • Spa Covers
  • And more…

In fact, there are two types of fire retardant textiles:

  • Inherent: these are fabrics that are naturally resistant to flames. Like vinyl, some fabrics resist fire just by their basic make-up. This means these textiles are not treated with chemicals or other additives to make them fire retardant.
  • Treated: textiles that are not inherently flame retardant must be chemically treated. This means over time, the fire-retardant quality of the fabric can be worn out.

Fabrics like our Top Gun fire retardant textile are great for tents, awnings, canopies and other industrial applications. Keep in mind, treated fire retardant textiles are not all the same. Some are treated with coatings that don’t last as long as others. Or only the top of the fabric is treated.

So how do these textiles work? Doesn’t everything burn at some point? For starters, fire retardant fabrics are designed to keep the textile from burning right away. At some point, some fabrics will burn even if they have been treated or are inherently fire retardant. This isn’t a failure on the fabric’s part, but a matter of chemistry. If you throw a fabric in a burning fire for long enough, eventually the coating or the fibers will get worn off or hot enough to catch fire. But, you would have to leave those fabrics in the fire for a long time.

Fire retardant fabrics are meant to help keep fires at bay and give you time to put out the flames. That’s why these specialty fabrics are used in hospitals, cars, tents, awnings, and industrial textiles. Now that you know a little more about fire retardant fabrics, let us know how we can help you with your next project by visiting us at or giving us a call at 1-800-444-4701.

Posted by Vaughan Brothers in Safety Fabrics, 0 comments