Canvas Tarps vs. Clear Vinyl Tarps: Which is the Best?

If you have some expensive materials or equipment that you need to protect from harsh weather conditions and outdoor elements, you need to choose a high-quality tarp. However, choosing the perfect material might become a daunting process, especially when you consider the amount of money you spent on the tarps. The tarps you choose should be rain, wind, and UV resistant. Not to mention, the tarps should also withstand tear and wear. 

So, which material will be perfect to fulfill your needs? The canvas and clear vinyl tarps are two of the most famous tarps available in the market. Let’s discuss their properties and their differences. 

What is Canvas Tarp?

The canvas tarps are made of cotton and they are treated with other chemicals that make them more water, fire, and mold resistant. As per Masterclass, cotton is a wear and tear-resistant fabric. On the other hand, the untreated canvas tarps offer a more porous surface. Due to their advantages and capability of withstanding most outdoor conditions, the canvas tarps are perfect to protect your outdoor items. The canvas tarps can withstand high temperatures and are breathable. 

Due to the breathability properties, the canvas tarps help moisture escape. Canvas tarps are also great for covering the construction equipment and machinery. 

What is Clear Vinyl Tarp?

Synthetic materials are used to craft the clear vinyl tarps and they are perfect for applications that require extreme durability. 

The vinyl clear tarp is ideal if you want to purchase a waterproof cover that will protect your valuable items from extreme weather conditions. The clear vinyl tarps are often used to truck beds, construction equipment, and other items that require waterproof properties. The clear vinyl tarps are high-quality, great for both personal and professional use. Here are the differences between canvas tarps and clear vinyl tarps. 

Appearance and Texture 

One of the best ways to distinguish tarps is by deciding their feelings, appearance, and performance. Natural organic materials are used to craft the canvas tarps. However, the chemical treatment of the canvas tarps will determine their lifespan, usage, and effectiveness. On the other hand, the clear vinyl tarps are made of synthetic materials that have a shiny and smooth surface. You can wield the clear vinyl tarps together to make them more waterproof. 


The durability of the material is one of the most important factors you need to remember while choosing tarps. Both clear vinyl and canvas tarps are extremely durable. 

However, the natural composition will play a significant role to determine the lifespan of the tarps. Canvas is made of natural fiber cotton that might shrink when exposed to outdoor elements for a long time. On the other hand, the clear vinyl tarps are made of PVC, one type of plastic capable of withstanding different temperatures. As vinyl tarps are reinforced with polyester scrims, they are one of the most durable tarps available in the market. 

Both canvas tarps and clear vinyl tarps come with fire-retardant properties. This is an important aspect you should consider. 


You should consider all of the requirements, including waterproof and water-resistant features while choosing a tarp. If you want to the tarps at a high temperature, the canvas is the perfect solution. If you prioritize waterproofing, nothing can beat the clear vinyl tarps. 



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