Clear Vinyl Fabric Product Guide

Clear vinyl is a durable material that comes in many thicknesses. With clear vinyl, the higher the gauge, the thicker it is. 60 gauge is thick at 0.06 inches and 4 gauge is only 0.004 inches.

You’ll also see vinyl thickness referred to in mls. This is similar to but NOT the same as the gauge measurement.

All the gauges are waterproof and can withstand very hot and cold temperatures. Clear vinyl also provides some UV protection and is non-yellowing.

Our vinyl is sold by the yard and comes in 54″ widths with the exceptions of the 60 and 80 gauges, which are 48″ wide. The 6 gauge also comes in 72″ wide, 15 yard long rolls.

With the wide variety of gauges offered, there are endless uses for this clear vinyl.

Lighter gauges: 4 gauge, 6 gauge, 8 gauge

Medium gauges: 10 gauge, 12 gauge, 16 gauge, 20 gauge

Heavier gauges: 30 gauge, 40 gauge, 60 gauge, 80 gauge

Clear Vinyl Product Spotlight Video

Common Uses

There are so many uses for clear vinyl and so many gauges that you can use for these uses that we always suggest ordering a couple of samples to see what will work best for your project. Usually, there’s not a single gauge that’s best, and it really depends on your personal preferences. So we’ll try to give you a sense of what is commonly used and you can decide what will work for your application.

I purchased 25 yards of the 10 gauge clear vinyl to replace my poly covered storm window frames in 2015. I couldn’t have been more satisfied not only has it been much more efficient in keeping out the cold of our west coast Canadian winter but it has allowed us to see what is going on outside our windows through the winter months and actually you wouldn’t even know it was there it is so clear. Very satisfied and yes it comes rolled up with paper separating the layers. Last year we had 0 degree weather for several weeks and it wasn’t stood up just fine. I would recommend it 100%.

-Kenneth, OFS Customer

Storm windows and winterization

This is the #1 reason why our customers buy clear vinyl. It provides protection from leaks and drafts, yet it is very clear and won’t obstruct your view. It can also withstand cold temperatures and is waterproof.

A common question is what gauge should be used. All gauges will do the job and can be used in different circumstances. For storm windows and frames, lower gauges are more popular from about 6 to 16 gauge. This is especially true if you’re using a screen window and spline to hold it in because the vinyl has to be thin enough to work with the spline.

For roll up porch protectors, medium gauges like 16 and 20 work well.

If you want more heavy duty protection, the higher gauges are the better option. 30 and 40 gauge vinyl are the best for extremely low temperatures. Since the higher gauges are stiff, they are better for when you want a more rigid vinyl. They are good for stapling or nailing to porch or patio posts.

A common way off applying medium to heavy gauges is to staple it to the post or frame, then attach thin strips of wood over the staples to hold the vinyl tight and provide a more finished look.

Adhesive backed Velcro is an option if you want the vinyl to be removable.

There are many ways you can use clear vinyl to winterize, so there isn’t one answer to which gauge is best. It depends on what you’re looking for and how you are going to apply the vinyl.

clear-vinyl-30-all-storms-screens Customer photos of winterization projects with 30 gauge clear vinyl

Tabletop protection

Another common use for clear vinyl is protecting tables. If you want to protect a tablecloth or you want the vinyl to hang like a tablecloth, lighter gauges like 4, 6, or 8 work well.

If you want to cut the vinyl to the size of the table or desk to use as a protective pad, the 40 or 60 gauge are probably what you’re looking for.

Not only is clear vinyl is great for protecting dining tables from food and spills, but also for protecting desks from scratches, outdoor tables from water damage, and craft tables from messy projects. Similarly, vinyl can be used for drop cloths.

clear-vinyl-6-table-cover2 Table protection for crafts with 6 gauge clear vinyl

Furniture Protection

When you think clear vinyl, you may think of grandma’s living room’s plastic covered sofas. And you can definitely use this clear vinyl for that! Use light to medium gauges for clear vinyl slipcovers to protect furniture from kids and pets.

You can also use it to cover outdoor furniture for the winter or to protect items stored in the garage from dust.

I used this [60 gauge clear vinyl] on both sides of an opening for a doggy door for my large dogs. It is sturdy and keeps the temperature in the garage much more comfortable.

Pet Doors

A common use for the 40 or 60 gauge vinyl is dog and cat doors.

Windows

Use the 30, 40, 60, or 80 gauge vinyl for windows on boats, tents, tractors, sheds, and other places where a non-glass window is needed.

Thin to medium gauges are great for windows in garment bags, under bed storage, and similar items were a clear window is handy for being able to see what’s inside.

clear-vinyl-40-car-window Customer photo of car window with 40 gauge clear vinyl

Greenhouses

Clear vinyl is also great for greenhouses. Like when used on porches, the gauge depends on how you’re applying it. If stretching across frames, thin to medium vinyl is better, and the more rigid gauges are best for stapling or attaching to posts.

clear-vinyl-greenhouse Customer photo of greenhouse made with clear vinyl

Photo, Label, and ID Pockets

Clear vinyl is also great for ID pockets in wallets and bags, label holders on items like storage bins, and for photo pockets on quilts. Thin to medium gauges are best for these uses, like 10 to 16 gauge.

clear-vinyl-16-fishing-lures Customer photos of fishing tackle covers with 16 gauge clear vinyl

We used clear vinyl in our How to Make a Hanging Pocket Organizer and shoe organizer tutorials.

 

Bags and Bag Liners

You can use clear vinyl for bag liners or entire bags, like for cosmetic bags, beach bags, diaper bags, and tote bags. Thin gauges are good for linings and medium gauges for bags.

We used 16 gauge in our no-sew clear vinyl bag tutorial.

clear-vinyl-bag-16-gauge Clear vinyl bag made with 16 gauge clear vinyl

Garments

The fashion-forward may use clear vinyl for clothing, whether it’s for more practical uses, like jackets and aprons, or for more unusual applications like skirts, pants, and other wearable items.

Curtains

You can make your own shower curtains out of clear vinyl to fit your shower. 6, 8, and 10 works for this.

Or cut strips to make curtains like you would find in cold food storage rooms. Heavier gauges are usually used for this kind of curtain.

Working with Clear Vinyl

Cutting

All our gauges can be cut easily with scissors or a utility knife, even the 60 gauge. Thinner gauges can also be cut with a rotary cutter.

Installing Grommets

Grommets and eyelets are commonly used with clear vinyl and are easy to install. See our no-sew bag tutorial to see grommets and eyelets installed to hold multiple layers of vinyl together and for use with bag hardware.

Sewing

Most gauges can be sewn with a regular sewing machine. For outdoor use, we recommend bonded nylon thread because it is strong and weather resistant.

For other uses that don’t require high strength, like bag liners, ID or photo holder, and tablecloths, the regular All-Purpose Polyester Thread is fine.

Universal needles work well. Like other fabrics, use smaller needles for thinner vinyl and larger for thicker. Use size 16 or 18 when using nylon thread.

Keep in mind, sewing will create small holes making it not 100% waterproof. Likewise, it’s best to hold together layers of vinyl with clips instead of pins because pinning will create permanent holes.

A regular sewing foot is often fine, but a Teflon or roller foot works the best.

For some applications you can use heavy duty clear tape to attach pieces of vinyl together.

Cleaning

We suggest rinsing it, then polishing dry with a soft cotton cloth or microfiber cloth. You may also use a vinyl cleaner for some applications.

Temperature

Each gauge of vinyl has a cold crack rating. This is determined with an impact test or by sharply folding the vinyl. The vinyl will become more brittle the colder it gets, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will crack. If you’re not handling it roughly, it may be fine in colder temperatures.

The cold crack temperature is 0° F for all gauges up to the 30 gauge. The 30 gauge rating is -29° F, 40 gauge is -30° F, and the 60 gauge is -10° F.

SHOP CLEAR VINYL


Questions & Comments

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I will be replacing the vinyl in a Florida room which has aluminum screen window frames and spline. What gauge should I use?
A shopper on May 19, 2018
BEST ANSWER: You may be able to reuse the spline or else get new spline of the same size. The vinyl gauge will vary based on the spline but 6 gauge is a good place to start. We suggest getting a couple samples and test it out to see which gauge is best for your particular windows.
I’d like to make a waterproof hand bag and wondered if I can use an impulse heat sealer instead of sewing. I understand different gauges may require different temp and time, to seal a seam. Would I be able to use an impulse heat sealer for 6 gauge ? What would temp and time be?
A shopper on Apr 5, 2019
BEST ANSWER: We haven't used an impulse heat sealer so we suggest getting a sample and trying it out. If it works, let us know since other people have had this question too!
I am making photo sets and am thinking of using this instead of glass in hand made frames. Will it work? if so what gage would be best?
A shopper on Jul 5, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Clear vinyl is not rigid enough for this purpose.
What gage would you recommend for covering a couch? I have cats.
A shopper on May 17, 2019
BEST ANSWER: 12 gauge is flexible enough to easily sew but thick enough to prevent cats from scratching the furniture.
We are recovering our padded dining chairs. I would also like to cover them with a clear vinyl for wear and tear. We have dogs. What gage would you recommend we use that would stand up to dogs, but could be folded and stapled over the new fabric?
A shopper on Nov 1, 2018
BEST ANSWER: The 10 or 12 gauge would likely work well.
Can you cut clear vinyl for 72” round tables?
A shopper on Jun 27, 2018
BEST ANSWER: The largest width we have is 72" for the 6 gauge.
72
72" 6 Gauge Clear Vinyl - 15 Yards
I only need about 3 yards--will this come folded or on a roll?
A shopper on Oct 17, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Our vinyl is shipped on a roll.
Is it safe for food like using for bowl covers?
A shopper on Sep 3, 2019
BEST ANSWER: This clear vinyl is not food safe.
I’m making vinyl cat scratch guards for my sofa about 18” x 24” in size, attached with spiral pins. The vinyl should be thick but fold around corners. I can’t tell the gauge of the ready made ones in retail. What gauge would be best? Also trying to figure how they put an adhesive on one side?
A shopper on Aug 16, 2019
BEST ANSWER: I would say anywhere between 20 and 40 gauge vinyl would be good for that but we recommend ordering a sample to be sure that it will work for your project .
Would the 30 gauge work for covering carpet in a boat or an rv? Is it suitable to walk on?
A shopper on Jun 25, 2019
BEST ANSWER: The weight of the 30 gauge would work and you could walk on it, but it may be slippery depending on footwear and if the vinyl gets wet.
I am interested in making pants that could be worn snowboarding. What would be a good gauge for pants for the snow? Obviously there would warm pants under the vinyl :)
A shopper on Apr 27, 2019
BEST ANSWER: We wouldn't recommend using clear vinyl for pants because it is not at all breathable and would probably get sweaty and uncomfortable. Nylon fabric could work though we don't have any clear nylon!
What's the best practice for attaching two pieces of vinyl to create wider spans? Is there a recommended adhesive? Any adhesives/solvents to avoid?
A shopper on Jan 31, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Vinyl can be sewn for a secure attachment. To waterproof, the stitching can be covered with clear tape. Tape alone may work in many applications. Rivets and tape are another option. We don't have a suggestion on a specific tape. If anyone has other successful methods or suggestions, we'd love to hear them!
hi i am replacing the back window to my convertible car i was going to use velcro to attach it to the canvas top from the inside rather than stitching. what can be used as a secondary waterproofing seal in addition to the velcro.would i use a silicone bead all the way around ?
A shopper on Apr 13, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Yes, silicone would likely work well.
Can you nail it to an old wooden screen door? And what size is best? 40? And how many yards needed for a door 8' high and 36" wide?
A shopper on Oct 29, 2019
BEST ANSWER: I think 40 would work well. You would need about 3 yards of material to cover that space.
I am purchasing two solar-powered mason-jar lamps that charge up an enclosed LED light, but are not waterproof. If I cover them with a piece of clear vinyl over the top and tie it around the jar lid, to make them waterproof, will it interfere with the solar charging? Thank you, Susan
A shopper on Oct 14, 2019
BEST ANSWER: I don't think it would. But we recommend ordering a sample to be sure that it will work for your project.
I want to make curtains for my deck. Is it better to sew a rod pocket or install grommets? I will be using 40 gauge as I live in a sub 0 climate for winter.
A shopper on Sep 30, 2019
BEST ANSWER: I would install grommets because that would give you the ability to open and close the curtains. Vinyl on a rod would hang a lot straighter and wouldn't really be able to pushed back and forth along the rod. So I guess it depends on what you are looking for.
I want to hang vinyl on my chain line fence to prevent my cats from climbing the fence. What gauge do I need? Should I use grommets on the holes I will make to use zip ties to attach the vinyl sheets to the fence?
A shopper on Sep 22, 2019
BEST ANSWER: I would use a pretty heavy gauge, like 30 or 40. It sounds like what you are describing with the grommets and zip ties would work well.
I want to put vinyl on one side of our screened in porch to protect from snow blowing in during Michigan winter. What gauge do you recommend? Can I nail or screw the vinyl right into the wooden posts of the porch or would you recommend building a frame for the vinyl and then securing to the posts?
A shopper on Sep 12, 2019
BEST ANSWER: A number of gauges would work, but a medium gauge like 16 is a good balance of strong and flexible. We suggest putting a thin strip of wood over the vinyl before screwing or nailing it to the posts. This prevents it from tearing.
I’m trying to create a biker jacket with vinyl, which gauge will give it that high fashion look? I don’t want it to be thin but I don’t want to get the thicket gauge and there is no flexibility in the jacket. Can some one suggest the best thickness. Thank you
A shopper on Sep 6, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Vinyl in the 8 to 12 gauge range would probably work for you.
I need to know the best gauge vinyl to wrap my front porch to use as a barrier to snow?
A shopper on Aug 6, 2019
BEST ANSWER: It depends what exactly you mean by barrier to snow. If you just mean stopping snowflakes, a lighter gauge like 6 to 12 would be fine, but if you need it to hold back piled up snow, you'd want 30 or higher.
Frost river makes a map pocket for boating purposes. Problem is that it's to small for my maps. What guage vinyl do you suggest for said project..?
A shopper on Jun 16, 2019
BEST ANSWER: A lower gauge like 6, 8, 10, or 12 would work well.
Any idea what the best thickness is for a pool float?
A shopper on May 28, 2019
BEST ANSWER: We haven't tried to make one but a thinner gauge like 6 or 8 would likely work well because it's more flexible.
My wife has severe dry eyes and I need flexible clear vinyl to make moisture chambers on her glasses. We had some made but very expensive. I would like to make them myself. I’m not sure of the thickness/gauge. I think either 6 or 4 based on your video. Do you offer any tiny samples? I would be very appreciative. In the meantime we are going to try to find a micrometer to try and gauge the current product.
Thank you.
A shopper on May 11, 2019
BEST ANSWER: We do offer samples! Right next to the add to cart button on each page there is an "add sample" button. We offer samples of all of our clear vinyl so you can order every gauge you think might work so you can compare it to your model.
what gauge size is best for shoes and slippers?
A shopper on May 7, 2019
BEST ANSWER: It really depends on the type of shoe and what you are looking for. Also the construction of the shoe will really make a difference. I would order samples so you have a better idea what they are like.
I need a 40 gauge clear vinyl tablecloth that is 60" wide by 120 " Long to cover my outdoor table do you have 60" wide heavy gauge clear vinyl tablecloth ?
A shopper on Apr 12, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Unfortunately our 40 gauge vinyl is 54" wide so it would not be good for your project. We do have a 6 gauge that is 72" here -
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72" 6 Gauge Clear Vinyl - 15 Yards
I am looking for see -through vinyl with a thickness appropriate (gauge?) for over the top of a Christmas tree skirt. The tree is often approximately 75 lbs (Noble Fir) with a 3 prong stand to hold the tree that would sit on top of the vinyl.
A shopper on Mar 21, 2019
BEST ANSWER: A medium gauge like 16 or 20 would work. You can order samples if you want to see how thick these gauges are.
20 Gauge Clear Vinyl
20 Gauge Clear Vinyl
16 Gauge Clear Vinyl
16 Gauge Clear Vinyl
What gauge would be good for a raincoat?
A shopper on Feb 28, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Gauge 4 or 6 would be flexible enough for a raincoat.
How long is a 10 yard roll?
A shopper on Feb 21, 2019
BEST ANSWER: 30 feet
Can I use a 20 gauge for my iguana enclosure? I have a wood frame of 2 by 4's.I dont need it to hold the iguana in, I will leave the bottom open with a swinging pet door, I just need it to hold a little of the heat from the heat lamps and some of the humidity from the humidifier..will it hold some of the heat, and humidity?
A shopper on Jan 17, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Yes, that should work.
I am an art teacher and am looking for something heavy duty to cover and protect tables from paint stains and other messing art mediums. I would like to cut some vinyl into 1-yard sheets and use 2 per table. I was thinking of getting the 40-60 gauge. Can 5-11 year olds roll that up easily and carry it to put away or will it be too heavy? It needs to also withstand years of constant use washed and rolled several times a day . Kids can be pretty rough. How easily can it get torn?
A shopper on Dec 16, 2018
BEST ANSWER: I would say 30 or 40 gauge would be perfect but we recommend ordering samples just to make sure it is exactly what you want. It will absolutely be light enough for the kids to carry though!