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Pro's & Con's for the use of PVC coated fabrics vs opal multiwall polycarbonate

Although many clients have a perceived preference for Polycarbonate over FR PVC, Clovis Canopies give a 10 year proportional Guarantee against premature UV degradation on both FR PVC and Polycarbonate, therefore the following ‘Pros & Cons’ may help decision making.

PVC Coated Fabrics


  • Considerably more cost-effective on the initial outlay.
  • As there is less structure within the roof area (purlin rails & glazing bars) this gives a less ‘busy’ appearance.
  • When raining the noise underneath the canopy is softer (akin to being in a tent).
  • If the top side of the roof is dirty (although periodical cleaning is recommended) the canopy will still appear clean from underneath.
  • Lower solar gain (heat increase) underneath the canopy on sunny days.


  • A slight reduction in light levels underneath the canopy.
  • Although very durable, if damaged, repair is slightly more involved.
  • Life expectancy is shorter than polycarbonate, although in excess of 14/15 years is common.
  • Because this is a single skin you may experience condensation dripping in cold and damp winter conditions.
Structured Opal Polycarbonate


  • Light levels underneath the canopy are higher.
  • Life expectancy is longer than with FR PVC.
  • Can be installed as a “man safe” roof for impact, although all roofs should be considered fragile.
  • Less condensation in the winter months.
  • If damaged, individual sheets can be easily replaced.


  • Initial costs are considerably higher than FR PVC.
  • As light levels underneath the canopy are higher, if the roof is dirty on top this will be visible underneath the canopy.
  • Higher noise levels underneath the canopy in rainy conditions.
  • Slightly higher solar gain (heat increase) underneath the canopy on sunny days.

In summary, the decision made will revolve around budgets and perceived preferences, however, whatever choice is made your canopy will give many years of durable service.

Why Clovis Canopies?
British made
Made to measure
Up to 25 year framework guarantee & 50 year structural design life
All year round use
After sales service
Clovis Canopies is a trading division of Clovis Lande Associates Ltd.