I'll let others chime in with their experiences, but from a service standpoint I've had only 2 issues over 3 years with the nylon hardware, both were the mounting point, and one involved alcohol. An easy solution to that is to pick up a couple spares (they're cheap compared to SS). No issues thusfar with Sharkskin. The 5 year warranty is full for 1 year and pro-rated for fade after that. The differences between Sharkskin and Sunbrella are 1) thickness - Sunbrella being a heavier weave and therefore more resistant to tearing; 2) Sunbrella is solution-dyed, meaning the fibers are dyed before weaving which makes it extremely fade-resistant; and 3) Sunbrella is a name brand with 50+ years on the market as the #1 marine fabric used worldwide. So it's very proven, but you're also paying for that brand reputation. Hope this helps.