Comparing PE and PVC Tarpaulin Materials for Storage Shelters: Which is the Best Choice?

When it comes to selecting the ideal tarpaulin material for storage shelters, two popular options often come to mind: PE (Polyethylene) and PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride). Both materials have their own unique characteristics and offer specific advantages. In this blog post, we will analyze the comparison between PE and PVC tarpaulin materials in terms of durability, shading, UV resistance, safety, and other aspects to help you make an informed decision. By the end, we will provide a selection suggestion based on our analysis.


Durability is a crucial factor when it comes to storage shelters as they need to withstand harsh weather conditions and constant exposure. PVC tarpaulin is generally known for its superior durability. It is resistant to tearing, abrasion, and impact, making it suitable for long-term use. On the other hand, PE tarpaulin is also durable but may not be as resilient as PVC, especially when it comes to resisting abrasion or punctures.


Shading is an essential consideration for storage shelters, particularly if you intend to protect sensitive items or materials from direct sunlight. PVC tarpaulin offers better shading capabilities due to its inherent opacity, providing enhanced protection against UV rays and reducing heat buildup inside the shelter. PE tarpaulin, while still capable of providing shade, may allow some sunlight to penetrate, resulting in slightly higher temperatures within the shelter.

UV Resistance:

Exposure to UV rays over time can cause tarpaulin materials to degrade, resulting in reduced lifespan and compromised performance. PVC tarpaulin has excellent UV resistance properties, making it highly suitable for outdoor applications. It can withstand prolonged exposure to sunlight without significant deterioration. PE tarpaulin, although resistant to UV rays, may exhibit some signs of fading or degradation after prolonged exposure, particularly if it has a lower UV stabilization rating.


When it comes to safety considerations, both PE and PVC tarpaulin materials have their advantages. PVC tarpaulin is inherently fire-resistant, making it a safer option in case of fire emergencies. It has a self-extinguishing property that prevents flames from spreading. PE tarpaulin, on the other hand, is not naturally fire-resistant. However, fire-retardant additives can be incorporated during the manufacturing process to improve its fire resistance, ensuring a safer environment.

Other Aspects:

Weight and Flexibility: PE tarpaulin is generally lighter in weight compared to PVC tarpaulin, making it easier to handle and install. PVC tarpaulin, although heavier, offers greater rigidity and structural stability, which can be advantageous in areas prone to strong winds or heavy snowfall.

Maintenance: Both PE and PVC tarpaulins are relatively easy to maintain. They can be cleaned using mild detergents and water, and any accumulated dirt or debris can be easily removed. However, it's important to note that PVC tarpaulin may require more careful cleaning to prevent the use of harsh chemicals that could potentially damage the material.

Selection Suggestion:Based on the analysis of the various factors, it is evident that both PE and PVC tarpaulin materials have their own strengths and weaknesses. The selection depends on your specific requirements and priorities.

If you prioritize superior durability, enhanced shading, and better UV resistance, PVC tarpaulin would be an excellent choice. It offers exceptional longevity and protection against the elements, making it suitable for long-term storage solutions, particularly in areas with extreme weather conditions.

On the other hand, if weight, flexibility, and cost are key considerations, PE tarpaulin may be a more suitable option. It is lightweight, easy to handle, and often more affordable than PVC tarpaulin. PE tarpaulin can still provide adequate protection for your storage needs, especially in moderate weather conditions.

Additionally, it's worth mentioning that there are variations within each material category. Different grades and thicknesses of PE and PVC tarpaulin are available in the market, offering varying levels of performance and durability. It's crucial to consider the specific product specifications and choose a tarpaulin that aligns with your specific requirements.

Ultimately, the selection of the tarpaulin material for your storage shelter depends on a combination of factors including budget, desired lifespan, environmental conditions, and specific application needs. Carefully assess your priorities and consider the pros and cons of each material before making a decision.


PE Tarpaulin  PVC Tarpaulin
Durability Durable Highly durable, Strong and tear-resistant
Shading Semi-shading Full-shading
UV Resistance UV protection, protection ability decreases with life. UV protection, suitable for long-term outdoor use.
Safety Waterproof Waterproof and fireproof
Weight Lightweight and easy to handle. Heavier compared to PE.
Maintenance Easy to maintain Easy to maintain
Cost Cost-effective More expensive than PE
When it comes to selecting the best tarpaulin material for storage shelters, both PE and PVC offer distinct advantages. PVC tarpaulin excels in terms of durability, shading, UV resistance, and inherent fire resistance. On the other hand, PE tarpaulin is lightweight, flexible, and more cost-effective.

Considering the factors discussed in this blog post, it's recommended to opt for PVC tarpaulin if long-term durability, enhanced shading, and superior UV resistance are critical for your storage shelter. However, if weight, flexibility, and cost are primary concerns, PE tarpaulin can be a viable option.

Remember, it's essential to evaluate your specific needs, the intended application, and the environmental conditions in which the storage shelter will be used. By doing so, you can make an informed decision and choose the tarpaulin material that best suits your requirements, providing optimal protection for your valuable belongings.

Always consult with reputable suppliers, consider their expertise, and review product specifications before making a final decision. A well-chosen tarpaulin material will ensure the longevity and functionality of your storage shelter for years to come.
ShelterStorage shelter

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published