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Waterproof Canvas Tarp
Canvas Tarps Offer The
Perfect Combination Of
Water And Flame Resistance

Unlike the popular, economical blue tarps designed for short term use, or heavy duty vinyl, canvas is made from 100% cotton fibers. That makes it durable, easy to handle, and easy on the environment.

With treatment for water resistance, canvas is excellent for covering anything that needs protection from sun and rain. And it readily accepts treatments to provide more protection against oil penetration, mildew, and rot.

This is a true multipurpose cover. As a woven fabric, it is both light and strong, and provides a flow of air that polyethylene and vinyl do not. On the farm, large canvas tarps with grommets are often used to cover stacks of hay and prevent water damage.

In general, they are best used to protect stationary items that benefit from breathable covering, such as machinery, construction equipment, and tools. The air flow helps keep the items from the damage of mildew, rust, and heat.

There are a number of special treatments that make canvas a such versatile material

Cotton Canvas Fabric Treatment

Cotton cloth tarps are naturally breathable, allowing heat and condensation to move freely through the material. But the cotton material is more susceptible to mold and mildew when left outdoors. So most cotton canvas on the market is treated to make them resistant to water, rot, and mildew.

One of the most important treatments is the application of chemicals to make the fabric fire retardant. But keep in mind that not every canvas tarpaulin is so treated.

These treatments are not the perfect solution for all situations. The paraffin coating makes the canvas water resistant, not water proof. And it does wear off over time and with multiple cleanings. The wax and chemicals can also leave stains on car and boat exteriors, and indoor furniture.

Painter's TarpIts' a different story for drop cloth canvas, also called a painter's tarps. A good drop cloth is made from a high-quality, soft natural cotton canvas, without the damaging dyes or chemicals, and is great for covering floors and furniture.

A painters tarp reduces cleanup effort, and keeps the work area looking good in high-visibility locations. Tightly woven material prevents paint bleed-through and adds extra strength so cloth can be washed.

Canvas Tarp Construction

The best canvas tarps are made from 100-percent military cotton duck, which generally lasts longer than polyethylene and polypropylene.

Cotton DuckQuality construction should include double stitching (some are triple stitched) at the hem and seams, often with rope sewn into the hem for reinforcement. Tie-down brass or aluminum grommets are rust-resistant, and are reinforced with a patch of extra fabric for strength. Spacing ranges from 24 to 48 inches apart.

Canvas fabric weights range from 10 oz up to 15 oz(with treatment), and you'll find sizes from 4 x 8 to 20 x 30 feet.

Sunlight, rain, and dirt, and cleaning, will, over time, reduce the effectiveness of the protective treatments. However, with proper storage when not in use, and gentle cleaning, you can extend the life of your canvas tarp significantly.


Recommended Online Sources

Our favoite online source, hands down, is Global Industrial. They have a huge selection of sizes, in 10oz and heavy duty 12oz fabric weights. Sizes range from 3x4 all the way up to 40x40.

They are also a great source for painter's canvas drop cloths. These are made of soft 10oz cotton in sizes from 4x12 up to 20x20.


For More Information:

Tarps: An overview of the main choices in protective tarp coverings: polyethylene, canvas, and mesh.

Drain Tarpaulins: An ideal emergency solution to rook leaks.

Mesh Tarps: The choice when you need airflow and modest shade, and where water proofing is not required.


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