4 Important Pointers to Consider for Buying the Best Canopy Tent

best canopy tentA big hurdle in the outdoor trip fun is bad weather. As you cannot predict when there would be rain or storm, it’s best to be prepared for the bad weather and one of the best tools you can have to protect yourself is a canopy tent.

However, if you decide that it’s necessary to buy a canopy tent while planning for your next camping trip and set out for shopping, there are high chances that you’ll be daunted regarding which one to buy, because there is such a variety available out there.

But there is no need to worry! Here are some useful tips that will help you find the best canopy tent that will suit your particular needs and lifestyle.

1. Types of Canopy Tents

As mentioned earlier, there is a wide variety in canopy tents and this occurs firstly in their types. Here are a few prominent types.

Event Canopy

Again event canopies are available in various sizes to accommodate a gathering of any size. This type of canopies is the best if you are going to throw an outdoor party where many of your friends and family will gather to celebrate an event, like a bridal shower, wedding or birthday party. And you can use them even as a temporary car port to protect expensive vehicles.

Event canopies are up to 30’ long with usually a steel frame and sturdy construction. However, they are not suited to quick setup or breakdown which you’ll need at a camping trip. They are also too heavy to carry easily towards the campsite.

Sports Canopy

Sports canopies are designed for easy setup and transport, and are often smaller than other types. They mainly serve as a protection from the sun on beaches, sports field or when you want to host a garage sale. Consider what you want a canopy tent for before making a purchase.

Sports canopies are waterproof, come with a carrying bag and can be quickly set up or taken down. But they are not very sturdy and you cannot use them for long.

Popup Canopy

With their “pop” open design, popup canopies are the simplest to set up and take down. They are perfect for camping trips, beach trips, craft fair, sporting events, backyard barbecue etc. They are lightweight and so, easy to carry and use. But they require at least two people to set up and don’t often include side flaps for protection.

best canopy tent

Beach Tent Canopy

Beach tent canopies are designed to be used on beaches with thin poles to bury easily in sand. Plus, the poles are slanting which provide increased stability. They usually sport a convenient carrying bag. But they are typically smaller in size and usually don’t include side flaps for protection.

2. Canopy Materials

There are mainly two types of canopy materials – fabric and PVC/plastic. Fabric is more lightweight among the two, but plastic is extremely durable though heavy. Both are water resistant, but fabric provides only a little protection from the harmful UV rays, while plastic provides full UV protection.

Among fabric, polyester is the most common material because it’s the most affordable. It’s waterproof, durable and perfect for recreational use but may not be able to withstand high-impact weather.

Therefore some people choose polyethylene, because it’s waterproof. However, while buying a material that is claimed to be waterproof, you should be careful because usually manufacturers coat a water resistant fabric with a cheap chemical sealant and call it waterproof. However, this sealant will deteriorate with time and canopy will no longer remain waterproof. Polyethylene has a thicker thread structure than polyester and so, can block heavier rainfall; however, it’s not more durable than polyester and so, isn’t a good alternative for long-term use.

To withstand high-impact weather, the best canopy material is vinyl i.e. PVC. This is a synthetic plastic made from chlorine and ethylene. It’s strong and durable. Its downside is that it’s heavy and costly. You won’t typically find vinyl material in popup canopies.

So, consider your case while choosing among these.

3. Canopy Frame Materials

When it comes to canopy frame materials, they are four: plastic, aluminum, steel and fiberglass. If you are going to face a lot of water (like at a lake or beach), fiberglass or plastic can be ideal frame materials. For durability, you should choose steel or aluminum. However, remember that steel is prone to rust and so, will require regular maintenance. Aluminum is lightweight, low-priced, and resistant to rust and corrosion; thus it’s more preferable than steel. However, its shortcoming is that it’s not as strong as steel and is more prone to bending.

4. What Features to Look For?

Weight bags are essential if you are planning to use your canopy in severe weather. They can be used to add weight to each leg of your canopy for more stability.
You should also look for a carrying bag so that you can carry your canopy easily. Especially if the bag has wheels, it’s even more convenient.
Another feature to look for is slanting legs which add more stability especially when you will be setting up your canopy in unstable grounds like a beach.
As you are looking for protection from elements, screened or enclosed canopies are what you should look for because they will provide additional shelter from sun, wind, rain and insects.

All in all, while buying a canopy tent, you should consider all these factors vis-à-vis your particular needs. With this you can choose the best canopy tent and will enjoy your outdoor trip to the most.

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