A backyard patio with a cover to protect against the sun is a great place to enjoy the outdoors. Sometimes, however, a simple overhead cover is not enough.
Wind or glare from the sun can still spoil your otherwise comfortable patio. One of the best solutions to this problem is the use of patio shades (or sometimes called patio blinds).
Patio shades can be raised or lowered via a motorized crank or a hand crank. The motorized versions are very easy to operate making them the preferred choice if cost is not the biggest concern. The manual cranks are just as effective and similar to raising or lowering a large patio umbrella.
Let’s explore how these shades can improve the comfort of your patio:
- Patio shades are very similar to window shades but usually much bigger and stronger.
- They can be attached to the patio cover which allows them to be dropped or unrolled into place as needed.
- For patios without a covering, will resemble a window awning that extends from the side of the house to provide the needed protection.
- Patio shades are usually made from durable fabrics or wood slats similar to those used to make blinds.
- They are normally weather-treated to protect against the UV rays of the sun.
- They are also translucent to allow visibility outside even when the shades are down. This feature also allows sunlight to penetrate which helps keep the patio bright and allows air to circulate.
These shades also have some form of tie-down at the bottoms to keep them from flapping in the wind.
So what are the benefits of installing patio shades?
The most obvious is the added protection from the elements. Patio shades can provide a marked degree of cooling when rolled down making the patio much more comfortable on hot days. You can also lower them partway to block the sun’s glare or keep out wind-driven rain.
A side benefit of patio shades is UV protection for everything else on your patio. No need to use patio furniture covers when the shades can provide all the protection you need.
These shades also enhance your outdoor dining and entertaining. They not only protect your food and table but also give some privacy to neighbors. Patio shades offer some unique ways to light your patio after dark as the shades reflect the light giving off a warm glow.
Finally, here’s a benefit I’d never thought of. They can help protect against errant golf balls and won’t break like a window or screen! Patio shades are as simple as they are useful. There are many different styles available to fit any patio decor. If you’re looking for a way to make your patio more comfortable then check out some shades instead of patio umbrellas.
With today’s wide choices in lifestyle and the trends that go with it, choosing outdoor umbrellas can be a daunting task. This is, of course, assuming that you are one of those lucky enough to have a piece of garden or a terrace, and that, for you, to sit outside in the shade is a pleasure that should not be passed up.
Yes, there is nothing like a shady, languid afternoon with a best-seller novel for the company and a cool drink nearby.
And whether you are a slave to fashion and trends or simply a practical kind of property owner, you would still want that patio umbrella to blend in with the environment you have created. Better still, if this shade provider can enhance the place and the other furniture around it.
Besides being aesthetically pleasing, patio market umbrellas have perhaps a more important function. Today’s sun is stronger and more harmful. These umbrellas are among the best ways to remain outside without absorbing the harmful UV rays of the sun.
So how does one go about choosing one of these market umbrellas? Not only are there so many designs and make to choose from, but there are also other considerations to make because this piece of garden furniture can either be attached to other patio furniture, such as a table, or free standing on a deck, walkway or even on the lawn. Yes, Sigh!
Now that we know that the real focus is getting protection from the sun, it is also good to remember that it is best if the outdoor umbrella is free-standing, with a strong and secure base. This way you can either have it on its own or arrange it together with lounge sets.
Among the first things you need to do is to determine is how much room you have for your umbrella. Start by measuring the length and width of the area you want shaded, allowing about six inches from all sides of the umbrella for clearance. This will allow it to go up and down without any obstruction.
Do the math and you have an idea of how big a market umbrella will fit in your area. Tip: Smaller umbrellas are great for caf and bistro settings while mid-sized umbrellas, such as 9-foot and 10-foot umbrellas, are best for covering a dining set or chaise lounges.
As for the design of this device, it really boils down to personal preference even though most outdoor patio umbrellas are made of either wood or aluminum. Wooden ones provide an elegant look and are especially suitable in tropical and classic settings.
The aluminum frames, meanwhile, besides being available in a multitude of colors completing a modern look, also have some neat functions not usually found on wood frames. This kind opens and closes with either crank, manual lift, a pulley mechanism, kwik lift, or remote control. The wooden ones can only open and close with either a manual lift or pulley mechanism with a brass holding pin to secure their height.
Another great advantage of having an aluminum-made outdoor umbrella is that they are available with either push-button tilt (3 positions), non-tilt, auto-tilt (keep cranking to tilt), or full rotation functions (offset umbrellas). No tilting for wood-based umbrellas.
However, parts for aluminum patio umbrellas are harder to replace. You would need to keep the manufacturer’s contact numbers and addresses to make sure you know who to contact in order to replace any faulty parts.
But take heart. Because these aluminum umbrellas are mostly machine-made, there is also a huge selection of frame colors to choose from. The better for matching this device to the furniture you intend to place around it.
The best (or in this case maybe even most daunting) part of this market umbrella-hunting job is perhaps choosing the fabric or material of the device together with colors, shapes, and even designs.
The recommended way to go about this is really to shop around thoroughly before making a decision. After all, you are going to spend some hard-earned money on it and you would want it to last. The advent of the World Wide Web makes window shopping for this item easier on the feet. Clicking here and there may help you see as many available options as there are on the market. You can try to get one from your local dealer or even have it custom-made from overseas.
The choice is yours. Mind you, however, having a patio umbrella in your garden, terrace, patio, or verandah, however luxurious a picture it paints, is still actually the cheaper option to installing an awning. Call these umbrellas free-standing or four-legged awning if you will but the fact remains that their upkeep is straightforward just ensure the surfaces of the fabric are free of dirt, leaves, and standing water. And cleaning is just with mild soap which will not damage the water-repellent finish.