Many years ago the only tarp material that was available was canvas, these tarps have now lost favor and vinyl tarps are now the common product. Vinyl is a great material; it is stain resistant, wears like iron and does not tolerate moisture. They are light weight, making them the tarp of choice.
Vinyl tarps are used everywhere; painters and decorators use them as drop cloths, mariners use them as boat covers and homeowners use them for covering the BBQ, patio furniture and the swimming pool. The great thing about tarps is there utilitarian design; they are nothing more than a vinyl square, fitted with rust resistant grommets around the perimeter and reinforced corners. They can be thrown over anything and tied down with ropes or bungee cords.
The color most often associated with vinyl tarps is bright blue but they can be had in lots of colors including black, silver and green. When you see the crew roll out the tarp to cover the baseball diamond when rain starts, it is usually green whereas tarps that are used to reflect the sun’s rays are silver. The vinyl material used for the tarp is of varying qualities, it all depends what you want to use the tarp for. In many cases the material is resistant to UV; this feature greatly extends the life expectancy when the tarp is used to cover construction material or anything else which is stored outdoors.
Vinyl tarps are the king of the hill when it comes to material; they are considered the best as they are 100 percent waterproof and very resistant to abrasion. They are not difficult to clean and are totally impervious to the formation of mold, vinyl tarps are the tarp of choice for truckers.
Canvas tarps are the grand-daddy of all tarps, they may be water resistant but they are not waterproof. If a canvas tarp is left standing for long with puddle water on it, water leaks straight through the fabric. Canvas tarps weigh a great deal compared to vinyl. Canvas tarps are still used by many in the welding trade as they can be treated with chemicals that resist burning so they are often used to protect the surroundings when welding is taking place.