Overhead structures provide many benefits to the homeowner. They extend your outdoor living space, provide protection from the elements, and enhance the beauty of the landscape. These structures allow you to spend more time relaxing and enjoying your garden in a comfortable environment.
Choosing a type of overhead structure can be difficult. There are lots of options you can go with, depending on your preference and budget. To help with this decision-making process, there are two main considerations to start with: type of structure and type of material. Here is a brief analysis of each:
- The most inexpensive option for filtering out the sun.
- Versatile; can be combined with multiple sails for creative options.
- Easily anchored to existing structures and/or posts.
- It can be taken down or put up seasonally.
- Heavy-duty, waterproof fabric needed to be used in rain.
- Attached to the side of the house.
- It can be a fabric awning or solid covered structure.
- Covers can be translucent polycarbonate panels or fabric to filter out the sun and the rain.
- Fabric awnings can be retractable to allow maximum versatility.
- Fairly easy to build – usually consists of four poles with crossbeams and rafters connecting them on the top.
- Provides filtered sun/shade, depending on the type of cover:
- Solid coverage with translucent polycarbonate panels will protect against rain
- Retractable fabric can provide both sun or shade
- Crossbeams spaced closer or further apart will offer filtered sun/shade
- Vines provide natural, filtered sun/shade
- Can be highly ornamental.
- Solid roof material provides constant shade and rain protection.
- Can be purchased as a kit, but usually requires professional installation.
Material options differ in price, durability, and assembly:
- The simplest and least expensive ways to create shade.
- Examples include umbrellas, awnings, and shade sails.
- Lots of color options and shapes.
- It can be removed or attached when necessary.
- Less durable than other, more permanent solutions. Need heavy-duty, waterproof type to keep the rain out.
- Rich, natural-looking. There are a variety of wood-types to match the house/environment.
- It can be enhanced with stain or paint.
- Eventually degrades over time due to weather exposure.
- Needs regular maintenance including staining, cleaning, and repairs.
- Popular framing for awnings or patio covers attached to the house.
- Extremely durable, corrosion-resistant and lightweight.
- It can come in many colors and styles.
- Competitive cost to wood.
Vinyl or Composite
- Extremely strong and corrosion-resistant.
- Composite material can be made to look like wood.
- Will last as long as the house.
- Somewhat more expensive than wood or aluminum structures.
Hopefully, this will help you narrow down your choice of structures to one that will give you the most value and fit your budget. Contact Blessing Landscapes when you’re ready to enhance your outdoor living area!
I didn’t know that some patio covers are made from materials that can protect an area from the sun. My wife and I like to eat breakfast together outside during the summer, but we want to find a way to enjoy our meals without worrying about our necks getting sunburned. We’ll consider getting a patio cover to prevent the sun from damaging our skin.
Thank you for mentioning how pergolas can be easily constructed by utilizing four poles that are connected by a rafter above them. My wife and I are thinking about having a pergola built on the paver patio that my uncle helped us install last year, but we need to make sure that we can have it set up before we host an outdoor barbecue this spring. We’ll find a professional that can help us with the construction process.
Good post. I’m going through a few of these issues as well..
Good afternoon Britany,
If you would like to give our office a call, we’d be happy to talk to you about any projects you have.
An impressive share! I have just forwarded this onto a friend who has been conducting a little research on this. And he actually ordered me lunch simply because I stumbled upon it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending the time to discuss this matter here on your web page.
Good afternoon Takisha.
If you would like more info about covered structures, please give our office a call and we’d be happy to talk with you about any projects you have in the future.