Frequently Asked Questions
Frankford Umbrellas has been in business for 125 years. We are not a large corporation. We are a family
business, and we take this very seriously. What does this mean? It means we do not chase profits; we are more
concerned with quality and customer satisfaction. We want our customers to purchase an umbrella that is right
for them, rather than fooling them into purchasing something they later regret or do not use. “Value,” as
defined by Great Uncle Isadore Frankford, is getting what you pay for AND MORE. Unfortunately, the definition
of “value” has changed in our society today.
Frankford’s Beach Umbrella is not for everyone. It is a commercial-quality umbrella, which means you need to know how to use and care for it with patience. You also have to understand the weight of the umbrella and how the wind and the beach affect it. Our umbrella is NOT for the casual beachgoer, or the “day tripper.” The Frankford Beach Umbrella is for the dedicated and passionate beachgoer who loves the sun, the breeze, and the sand (but safety first – not too much sun). It is also for the dedicated and successful beach concessionaire and is known throughout the world at resorts by those who are passionate about their beach experience. Frankford manufactures and sells thousands of beach umbrellas every year and only receives a handful of complaints per year. These complaints only come from those who do not understand what they are purchasing or how to operate and maintain the product.
Frankford Beach Umbrellas are also perfect to give as gifts to your passionate beach-loving friends and family members. Did someone ask you to stay at their beach house for a weekend and you’d like to give them a gift to show your appreciation? Or are you struggling to give a gift to someone you love who already has everything? A Frankford Beach Umbrella might just be one of the best and most thoughtful gifts they have ever received.
Yes, we are the same company, but we are not open to the public any longer unless an appointment is made.
Frankford Umbrellas moved its offices, production facility, and showroom to Mount Laurel, New Jersey in 2010.
It is such a convenient location for the Frankford faithful from Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs,
right off of Route 73 on the way to the Jersey Shore.
While we now sell through our valued retailers and through this website, WE DO have Frankford Beach Umbrellas for sale with overstocked fabrics that we offer at a discount, and we are happy to set up an appointment for you to come to the showroom to see what we have this year. For example, when we order a large quantity of special fabrics for a resort in the Caribbean, we often order extra fabric, and make a few more covers. We are always happy to take care of our Metro Philly family, so please come and see what we have for you. We love connecting with you, and it gives us a break from supplying the rest of the country with our umbrellas. We recognize that our Philly family is the reason we are here, as it is your families who have supported us over the last century.
The Classic is made of steel for strength and durability, while the Modern is made of fiberglass for flexibility. The Modern has a wind vent at the top, while the Classic does not. Both types have flexible long-grain ash wood center poles and use marine-grade 9 oz. solution-dyed acrylic fabric.
If you are a casual beachgoer, steel ribs, if maintained properly by rinsing with fresh water, will meet your needs/expectations. Please note, however, that Frankford uses cold-rolled steel, which has flexibility and memory, but over time and in high winds, these ribs will stay bent and might need to be bent back into place. While lower in price, steel ribs will ultimately oxidize and show rust. Fiberglass, on the other hand, is better suited for avid/dedicated beachgoers since the frame is maintenance free and will not rust or oxidize over time.
Flexible ribs keep the umbrella from breaking, ripping, or blowing away. The ribs bend and flex easily in windy conditions, keeping the umbrella in place. Flexible ribs help umbrellas maintain their shape and last year after year.
The Classic Frankford does not have an air vent. Air vents, like the one on the Modern Frankford, are helpful in stronger winds, but not necessary. When used properly, the Classic does not require a vent, which is why our beach concessionaires do not use vented umbrellas.
Acrylic fabric is the same material used in boat sails, so it is extremely durable. Unlike polyester fabrics found on inferior umbrellas, our fabrics are made with a process that ensures the lasting quality of the fabric with superior waterproofing. The dying process begins with the threads, so when woven, the material is colorfast through the entire fabric; think of it like a carrot compared to a radish. The orange color of a carrot runs through the entire vegetable, while with a radish, the color only appears on the outside. Other inferior fabrics are more like a radish, with the color only applied to the surface of the fabric. Additionally, acrylic is easy to clean, resistant to mold and mildew, will not sag or stretch over time, and has an exceptional guarantee against fading (7-10 years). When these umbrellas are properly stored after use, this fabric can last without fading for generations. In fact, this fabric has been shown to last 7–10 years without fading in Florida, when left out in the sun year-round. Our beach umbrellas are NOT typically left open all day, or every day of the week. Imagine how long they will last without fading, even for the biggest beach lover. Watch this video to learn more.
Yes, our fabrics have an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) of 94%-98%, depending on the color chosen. (Because this is a woven fabric, a minute amount of sunrays can come through, which is why the fabric is not 100% UPF.) The Coats Dabond industrial-strength polyester thread that is used to weave our fabrics is known for being UV resistant and our Recasens fabric is high performance and tightly woven, to let in as little sunlight as possible
Our umbrellas are often imitated and sold on large online marketplaces and at big box stores. These umbrellas are built with inferior lightweight fabrics like Olefin or polyester, which will quickly shrink, tear, and fade after one or two seasons. These inexpensive umbrellas use zinc parts that will quickly rust in salt air, compared to our stainless-steel parts. We use only 9 oz. heavyweight marine-grade acrylic fabrics. And our long-grain solid ash wood center poles are designed for durability and finished with marine spar varnish, whereas other umbrellas use cheap unfinished woods, like birch, which will break in strong winds.
Frankford is committed to sustainability in both the way we operate our facilities and the way we make our product. We have installed motion-sensor lighting throughout our facilities, which has resulted in a 30% reduction in energy use. In addition, on average we recycle over 42,000 pounds of material annually. But our most basic effort to be green is displayed in one of our primary missions: to eliminate built-in obsolescence from our product. In a world where most product are intentionally designed to break so that they will need to be replaced in a year or two, our strategy is to make product that will stand the test of time. That’s why we use a 10-year fabric that won’t fade and a frame that is built to withstand the wind. It’s really pretty simple: when you make a product that doesn’t break, you prevent it from going into a landfill, you prevent the pollution that results from manufacturing replacement product, and ultimately, you protect the environment. That’s what sustainability is all about.
Winds on the beach can be variable, and the tilt is the weakest part of the umbrella. Tilted umbrellas can act as parachutes, and the wind can cause them to blow over and break. The sand gives you the natural ability to tilt the umbrella as the sun moves overhead during the day. Simply push the wood center pole as you need to adjust your shade and then repack the sand around the pole to keep the pole secured in the sand.
If inserted into the sand properly, Frankford Umbrellas DO NOT require a sand anchor because of the sturdy frame and sturdy center pole. Our umbrellas weigh 12-15 lbs. (Please note this umbrella weight – DO NOT purchase our umbrella if this might be too heavy for you to transport to and from the beach.) By contrast, big box umbrellas typically weigh only 3-5 lbs. and require a “sand anchor” to hold them into the sand. But when the wind picks up, these umbrellas can blow inside out and break.
Our umbrellas are known to last 25+ years, if cared for properly. Please see the Care & Maintenance section.
We have been in business for 125 years and measure the diameter of an umbrella in the traditional way, which is over the top of the umbrella (same way rain umbrellas are measured). The ACTUAL diameter of our 7.5’ umbrella is approximately 7’-7’ 2.”
13-15 lbs., depending on whether it has a fiberglass or steel frame.
25 lbs. with footrest, 20 lbs. without footrest.
No. However one can be purchased separately.
We do not assign wind ratings to our beach umbrellas, as we are unable to control how the product are used by the end user in variable environments, and they are never really fixed in a locked mechanism, as a patio umbrella would be. We advise all customers to close umbrellas if winds reach a sustained 25 mph. PRO TIP: Always point the top of the canopy into heavy winds so it does not act like a parachute and take hold of the center pole. When the wind slows, please repack the sand around your umbrella and go back to relaxing. If it is too windy for you to sit comfortably in your beach lounger without sand blowing in your face, it is too windy for your beach umbrella.
Long-grain ash wood. Long-grain is good for long-term flexibility. In a coastal environment, it is ideal.
Our loungers are made of Canadian long-grain Oak wood – a durable wood that is varnished twice to protect against the harsh salt air. In addition, we use stainless steel parts, NOT stainless metals like poorly made chairs found in online marketplaces and big box stores. These loungers are 20-25 lbs. – DO NOT purchase if they might be too heavy to transport to and from the beach.
Yes, all our beach umbrellas come with a protective carry bag.
There’s actually a story behind why the carry bag does not match the canopy color. Frankford has been making the navy blue canvas carry bag for our beach umbrellas for over 50 years – this is well known and recognized as part of our Frankford beach umbrella family. In the 1950s, Samuel Frankford was annoyed that customers kept asking for a beach umbrella carry bag (he thought everyone was lazy). One day, he was offered thousands and thousands of yards of overstocked navy blue cotton fabric at a very special price. It gave him an idea. He knew he couldn’t make an umbrella canopy with this fabric, so he made beach carry bags and included a sleeve to properly store the bottom pole without scratching the umbrella, and he included a carry strap. Sam was stubborn, but made a high-quality carry bag, and the navy blue color has become a signature of the Frankford brand.
Allowing the umbrella pole to stick out of the carry bag makes it easier to pull the umbrella out of the bag when you get to the beach.
It reclines in 4 positions and does not lie flat.
Sometimes things get lost or accidentally damaged. If you need a replacement ash wood bottom pole or carry bag, contact us and we’ll be happy to help.
In the finishing process of a natural wood product, it is normal to have variations in the tones. These variations in tone are not part of the warranty.
View our Warrantiessection.
Yes. Both are made of the same 9 oz. marine-grade acrylic fabric.
We don’t recommend it. The fabric is attached to the lounger for strength and durability. It is stapled on with a high-powered staple gun so it technically can be changed, but you need the right air compressor, staple gun, and stainless-steel staples or you might be disappointed with the result. The umbrella fabric is very difficult to replace on a steel umbrella and requires special tools. This is much easier on the umbrellas with fiberglass frames.
Our chairs do not have cup holders yet, but stay tuned!
No. We specialize in umbrellas and wood loungers.
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Like most product on the market today, Frankford utilizes a worldwide supply chain, with components coming from Canada, Spain, and other overseas locations. Frankford umbrellas are proudly and meticulously assembled in the USA in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, by our valued employees. They are then shipped from our warehouse/production center at the same location.
Shipping is free.
1-2 weeks. Delivery date varies by the ZIP code of the delivery location.
When you receive your tracking number, please allow 24 hours for it to become active. Daily pickup times vary across different carriers (UPS Ground, FedEx Ground, USPS Priority).
Items must be inspected within 24 hours of delivery. Returns must be requested within 5 days of delivery. The umbrella/lounger must be unused and in sellable condition. Frankford will provide a return authorization number (RMA#) and return shipping label. The costs for return shipping will be deducted from your refund.
Exchanges are permitted; however, exchanges must be initiated within 7 days of delivery. The umbrella/lounger must be unused and in sellable condition. The return shipping cost is the buyer’s responsibility.
Take a photo of the product in the condition in which it arrived along with any damaged packaging. Send an email here Please include the order number in your subject line.
We accept all major credit cards (Amex, Visa, Mastercard, and Discover).
Yes. Sales tax will be calculated during checkout.
Absolutely! Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
After adding products to your cart, proceed to the checkout page. Enter the discount code in the discount code field and click apply.
You should have received an email confirming your order. Click the link to the order in that email. Or, you can register for an account using the email address you provided when you placed your order.
Yes – within 24 hours. Because we strive to fulfill and ship orders quickly, we can not guarantee that your order can be canceled, even within the 24 hour period.
Insert the pointed end of the bottom pole into the sand first and apply downward pressure on the pole while rotating the top to dig into the sand. Make sure the bottom pole is at least 18 inches into the sand. Fill the resulting hole with sand and tamp it down firmly with your feet or hands. Next, open the umbrella frame into/against the wind and connect the metal sleeve to the bottom pole, engaging the connection button. If steady or high winds cause the pole to wobble significantly, we suggest that you repeat the tamp-down process regularly, resecuring your umbrella deep into the wet sand below. Watch this video to see how.
No. Our lower poles are pointed and designed to be directed right into the sand. When in the sand 12-14”, the umbrellas are sturdy and do not require an anchor. PRO TIP: Use wet sand.
Brush off dust and dirt with a soft brush. NEVER brush with stiff brushes since this can damage the fabric finish. Spray the umbrella with clean water. If a hose is used, avoid high pressure. Prepare a solution of solvent-free soap in warm water (no more than 100°F) and apply it to the fabric and stitching. Scrub with a soft brush, allowing the solution to penetrate the fabric. Rinse with water to remove all traces of soap. Let air dry and do not close the umbrella until the canvas is completely dry.
Please refer to our videos here.
When you close your umbrella, make sure the fabric is not caught in between the ribs and ensure the panels are lying flat and wrapped.
When you are setting up the umbrella, if sand makes its way into the aluminum sleeve before you assemble the
poles together, over the course of the day, the salt air and moisture turn the sand into a concrete-like
substance and cause the lower pole to get stuck inside the upper pole.
To prevent this, make sure your aluminum sleeve is free of sand.
To fix this, lay the umbrella pole on its side. Gently tap the sleeve while rotating the umbrella pole to shake loose any buildup of sand in the sleeve. If that does not work, spray with WD-40 to loosen. This is not a warranty issue, nor will it warrant replacement parts at no cost.
Because we use 9 oz. awning fabric, new the canopies are very tightly fitted. When opening the umbrella for the first time, you are operating against the tension of that fabric. This is normal – for durability purposes, the fabric is designed to slightly stretch and loosen over time without. After a couple of uses on the beach, you will notice that the umbrella is easier to open. Alternatively, upon receipt, you can leave the umbrella open in the sun for a few hours (this only applies to the Modern fiberglass frame because of the ability of the ribs to flex).
There are two stainless steel hooks on the end of the footrest that hook onto the end of the beach chair, so it can be easily attached and removed. Fun fact: Uncle Izzy Frankford liked to put the footrest on the “side” of his chair to set down his newspaper – he didn’t not like to put his feet up.