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>> Frequently Asked Questions:
 

Q. How long can I expect my boat dodger, bimini or enclosure to last?

A. It is really hard to give an exact quote, because there are many variables that affect the life of boat canvas. The choice of materials makes a big difference in the life of the product, with those of a higher grade obviously lasting longer. Also, where the boat is docked or stored is a big factor. Keeping your boat in the city (pollution) or under tree cover will likely cause the product to age faster. Additionally, maintenance is very important. I will be glad to give you literature from the manufacturer as well as go over proper care and maintenance with you. With this being said, the product should last 7 to 9 years on average.

Q. How long should I expect the clear vinyl windows in my enclosure to last?

A. This depends on the product and whether regular care is maintained. To give an estimation 30 gauge roll glass should last 3 to 5 years, 40 gauge sheet glass 4 to 7 years, and 40 gauge and 60 gauge Strataglass sheet glass 7 to 11 years.

Q. How long should I expect the thread (seams) in my marine canvas (enclosure, bimini, dodger, etc.) to last?

A. The standard thread used in the marine industry is made of UV polyester, which generally requires to be re-sewn after 3 to five years. Here at Charm City, we use Gortex thread by Tenera, which is an expanded PTFE fiber — commonly known as Teflon. Gortex thread will resist deterioration from elemental exposure, allowing the seams to last 7 to 10 years — or the life of your entire product.

Q. Does Sunbrella fabric provide UV protection?

A. Yes, it is recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation (view press release).

Q. What are the best materials on the market that can be used to create my dodger, bimini, or enclosure?

A. As for the actual fabric, Sunbrella stands alone as the superior choice and comes in three grades — Supreme, Plus and Standard. Stamoid is another good option, which is available in waterproof vinyl and comes in three different weights. For clear vinyl there are three products that I recommend — Crystal Clear 20/20 (by the makers of Strataglass), a very good standard option with its extra clear appearance, UV protection, and affordability; Strataglass, which is a premium product which offers connectivity, UV protection, scratch resistance, & beautiful clarity; and O’Sea which also offers UV protection, superior scratch resistance, and is chemically engineered to provide above average chemical and stain resistance (i.e. pollution, bird droppings).

Q. Do you offer a warranty on your work?

A. Yes, I will stand behind the workmanship on any product we produce. We will resew or fix any seam or stitch failure that occurs up to two years after your purchase. As far as problems with the product materials, they are covered under manufacturer warranties that vary from company to company. Please give us a call and we would be happy to recommend a product and go over the appropriate warranty and care.

Q. How do I care for my enclosure / cushions?

A. If the cushions are made of an outdoor material (marine vinyl or mesh) you can use a mild soap and sponge to clean them. If you have interior cushions or enclosures made from Sunbrella (or similar) fabric, please follow this link for Sunbrella’s Cleaning Guide.

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