Investing in a marquee also means investing the time to keep it in good condition. All Gala Tents are easy to clean since they’re made out of plastic and polyester/PVC coated, or PVC. While these materials already offer high levels of protection against wind, rain, UV rays, dust and other pollutants, your marquee still needs to be inspected and cared for on a regular basis to increase its lifespan and keep it looking fresh and new.
- Inspect your marquee at least once every season, and expect to clean it a couple of times over the spring and summer, especially if you’re using it frequently during this period.
- A marquee is more likely to get dirty during the set-up/dismantling process, so if you take care at these stages then you can get away with cleaning it less frequently.
- Consider where you erect the structure: for example, if it’s set up underneath trees, it’s more likely to gather tree sap, dust and grime that washes off the leaves when it rains.
- Grime from traffic will also show over time as a grey tinge on the white material. Once there, it’s difficult to remove and needs a chemical detergent and brush or similar – which is another reason to inspect and clean your marquee on a regular basis.
Cleaning your tent
- Rinse off any visible dirt with clean, tepid water.
- For regular cleaning when there is no ingrained dirt or grime, we recommend simple soapy water, or a specialist car cleaner diluted in water. Do not use any strong acid, alkaline, bleaching or oxidising cleaning agents, as these may damage the surface of the tent covers.
- The soapy solution can be spread over the tent covers using a large sponge or mop, depending on the size of the tent.
- If there is stubborn dirt or grime, you may need to use a brush, or even a deck scrubber for larger marquees, for a more intensive clean. But be careful when using an electric floor scrubber, as they are not easy to control on slippery surfaces and the combination of water and electricity poses an added risk. In addition, contact with stitching must be avoided, as aggressive cleaning could destroy it and cause leaks. Careful manual cleaning is preferable where possible.
- Do not leave the soapy water on the tent covers for more than 5 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with clean water to ensure no soap residue remains. A hose or light pressure washer are effective for this job.
- The marquee must be completely dry before being packed away, otherwise mould could form and the material could perish. Wiping off excess moisture with a clean cloth or mop is advisable, as is hanging the tent covers on the washing line to dry off completely. If you’ve used the opportunity to wipe the marquee frame clean too, then ensure this is also dry before packing it away.
Storing your tent
The conditions in which you store your marquee are important for its general maintenance and lifespan:
- Never put your tent away until it is completely dry: hanging the covers out for at least 24 hours is recommended.
- The optimum temperature for storage is between 10°C and 30°C. Lower temperatures could increase stiffness and lead to permanent creasing, while higher temperatures could cause the covers to stick together and the coating coming off in places.
- Therefore, store the marquee indoors or in outdoor areas that are completely dry and protected from rain, snow and direct sunlight. The environment should be free from condensation and humidity.
- Bending the tent covers could lead to permanent creasing; therefore, roll them if possible for storage.
- Do not pile additional weight on top of the folded covers.
- Store on a dry, clean floor; for example, in a garage or utility room.
- Avoid leaving your marquee in storage for more than 6 months. After this time, discolouring can occur. Even if you’re not using the tent at this time, an intermediate inspection is advisable.