Gazebos, Awnings, Sunrooms and Patio Coverings - 2022 Buyers Guide
Patio coverings and enclosures make a great addition to any home, and enable you to enjoy your outdoor living space all year long. Whether you're looking for a gazebo to add to your garden or an awning to convert your uncovered patio into a functional hangout space no matter the weather - we've got you covered!
However, there's a lot to consider when deciding which patio cover is right for you. Snow load/wind rating, size, roof thickness and even how much light the covering allows in, are all things to think about before making your final decision. We have patio covers which are full enclosed and some have side enclosures, netting and curtain options. Some awnings let over 80% of the light through, while others block the majority of light for those hot summer days.
Let's start with the basics, which type of patio covering are you after?
Awnings vs. Gazebos
The first thing to take into consideration when shopping for your new outdoor patio covering is what kind of structure you're looking for. Awnings are typically mounted to the side of your house while the other side is supported by adjustable legs, which are anchored into your foundation surface. Everything from the wall mount to the foot anchors is included in our handy do-it-yourself awning kits. It should be noted that some awnings and sunrooms may require a building permit depending on your area.
Gazebos on the other hand, are free-standing structures that can be mounted to your foundation surface with the included foot anchors, and are also light enough to be placed right on your deck. Gazebos come in a large variety of sizes, shapes and colours. If you're looking to cover a large area or don't want your covering directly adjacent to your house, then a Gazebo might just be the right choice for you!
What About Sunrooms and Full Enclosures?
Sunrooms or enclosed gazebos are another great option, providing endless possibilities for your outdoor living space! We carry both enclosed gazebos such as our popular Ledro Gazebo and enclosed awnings such as our San Remo Sunroom Enclosure. The Ledro Gazebo comes with two openings that must be placed opposite each other. All of our enclosed gazebos and sunrooms come with screen doors to keep the bugs out.
Can I Order A Custom Size?
We do not offer custom sizes but we do offer a variety of sizes, shapes and extensions to accommodate many different situations! All awnings, gazebos and sunrooms come in complete do-it-yourself kits.
What Are These Structures Made Of?
Our Awnings, Gazebos and Sunrooms are very well-built and sturdy structures. Palram is a 50 year old Israeli company that holds the patent for nearly bullet-proof polycarbonate. Palram structures are all manufactured with this strong and virtually-unbreakable polycarbonate paneling (roof and sides) in varying levels of thickness and with varying amounts of light transmission. The polycarbonate panels are 100% UV protected. The rest of the structure (legs/frame etc.) is most often comprised of anthracite powder-coated aluminum, making these structures truly built to withstand Canadian weather and live up to their good reputation!
Panel Thickness - What Does It Mean?
As you will see in the table below, these polycarbonate panels used to build the roofs and sides of our Awnings, Gazebos and Sunrooms, come in varying levels of thickness. What does this mean? And which should you choose? Generally, the thinner the panels, the more light comes through. Thinner panels allow more light through and thicker panels will provide you with more shade and less heat transfer. Allowing you to enjoy your backyard even on the hottest summer days! The thicker polycarbonate panels also provide stronger snow-load and wind resistant capabilities, an important factor to consider when purchasing an outdoor structure.
See our assortment of Awnings below, listed in panel thickness from thickest to thinnest;
*psf = pounds per square foot. Generally, 1 pound per square foot = 1 inch of average moisture snow. So 24 psf means that should should clear your roof before it reaches 2 feet of snow maximum*
|Model||Panel Thickness||Snow/Wind Rating||
|Olympia||16mm - Tinted||35 psf / 120 km/h||
61% for White – 10% for Bronze
|10 years||White or Bronze|
|Sierra||6mm - Tinted||25 psf / 90 kmh||80%||7 years||White or Grey|
|Stockholm||4mm - Clear||25 psf (11.2' x 12' awning) 41 psf (11.2' x 17') / 120 kmh||100%||15 years||Black|
See our assortment of Gazebos below;
|Model||Panel Thickness||Snow/Wind Rating||Light Transmission||Warranty|
|Dallas||6mm||23 psf / 100 kmh||2%||10 year|
|Martinique||6mm||15.4 psf / 90 kmh||15%||5 year|
|Roma||6mm||51.2 psf / 120 kmh||15%||10 year|
|Milano||6mm||15.4 psf / 90 kmh||15%||10 year|
|Palermo||6mm||25 psf / 90 kmh||
See our assortment of Enclosed Gazebos and Sunrooms below;
|Model||Panel Thickness||Snow/Wind Rating||Light Transmission||Warranty|
|Ledro||6mm (roof) 3mm (walls)||25 psf / 90 kmh||15%||10 years|
|Garda||16mm (roof) 3mm (walls)||30 psf / 120 kmh||10%||10 year|
|San Remo||8mm (roof) 3mm (walls)||30 psf / 120 kmh||65% (roof) 100% (walls)||10 year|
What Accessories Can I Add To My Structure?
One of our most popular add-ons is curtains and netting - which allow you to enjoy your new space without the hassle of pesky bugs! Almost all of our gazebos do come with the option to add netting and some come with the option to add curtains as well! This is an investment that you will be thanking yourself for down the road :). If it's an Awning that you're interested in, you'll want to check out our Awning Roof Blinds which are compatible with both the Olympia and the Stockholm awnings. Roof blinds will provide you with extra shade during those hot summer months.
Do I Need A Permit?
Typically a lean-to sunroom or awning that is attached to your house requires a permit, whereas a stand-alone gazebo or stand alone sunroom under 10 square meters (108 square feet) does not. Speak to your local building department for more details. You can read more on this topic here in our permit article.
What About Assembly and Installation?
This is a very common question! While we do not offer installation directly through our company, we do have a list of recommended installers here. Note however that since we have over 150 products, they may or may not have experience in assembling your awning or gazebo etc, however they will likely be familiar with our kits and assembly issues. Note our list of installers are only available in some city centres but you can check homestars.com for others.
How much? Well it depends on your intaller, and again, we don't get involved in quoting. However, generally, you can expect $1,000 to $1,500 per day for 2 installers. Some kits may take 1 to 3 days for assembly/installation depending on your requirements, foundation work, any additional construction etc..
Note that these are all meant to be Do-It-Yourself kits, but they take time and have lots of parts. Installation is typically a 2 person job using basic tools, but please reference the assembly manual for specific assembly times for each product at our listings (they are there!). You can view the detailed assembly manual at the product listings! Canopia (formerly Palram) also has many follow-along product assembly videos on their YouTube channel. Curious about anchoring to your foundation? You can read more on that here.
If you still have questions, or need help choosing the perfect patio covering for your home - please contact us and we'll be happy to help!