If your patio or porch receives a lot of sunlight throughout the day, you might be interested in creating some shade for you and your family to hang out in. While you can go out and buy an expensive sunshade, there is another option: creating a shade canopy with a tarp.
What You'll Need
There are a few things you will need to create a shade tarp for patio use. Before gathering your materials, think about what kind of canopy you want. You can create an awning type shade tarp that attaches to the side of your house or you can create a free-standing canopy. For an awning, you will only need two or three poles. For a regular canopy, you will need four poles or a canopy frame. You will also need a tarp, bungee ties and fittings. Luckily, Canopies and Tarps has affordable canopy box kits that come with everything you need except the poles.
Picking a Tarp
You want to make sure you have the right tarp to make your shade canopy with. Tarps come in a variety of materials including polyethylene, canvas and vinyl. When it comes to making a DIY shade canopy with a tarp, though, the best option is a mesh tarp. Mesh tarps give you protection from the harmful UV rays of the sun while still allowing for good airflow to help keep things cool.
At Canopies and Tarps, we have quality poly mesh tarps in a variety of sizes and colors. Our sizes range from 6' x 8' to 50' x 50'. Carefully measure the area you are trying to cover before purchasing your tarp size. Be sure to add some extra length if you're shade tarp is going to be at an angle and not flat. As for color, we recommend something darker like our black poly mesh tarps. Black will absorb the heat and keep you cool.
Making a Shade Canopy
Once you have all your materials in hand and your tarp ready, it's time to get to work. If you want to create an awning, attach one side of the tarp to your house using hooks. Use a bungee cord to tie the grommets of the tarp to the hook that has been drilled into your wall. After this, the steps for an awning and stand-alone shade canopy are similar.
Tie a bungee cord to a grommet at each corner of your tarp where you want the poles to be. Then, secure each bungee tie to its respective pole. After you have the tarp attached to the poles, you will need to stick the poles in the ground. Be sure to place the poles far enough apart that the tarp is taught but not straining to stretch. The next step is to secure your poles to the ground with bungee rope and stakes.
To give your shade tarp extra stability, place a pole in the center of your canopy. Attach this pole to a canopy fitting to create your roof. Your roof can either be flat or peaked depending on which canopy fitting you choose.
Canopies and Tarps for All Occasions
Whether you want to create your own shade tarp for patio use or would like to purchase a complete canopy set, check out the wide selection of tarps, canopies and tents at Canopies and Tarps.