Patios and pergolas are easy to mix up and the main difference between them is the materials used in their construction. While patios are solid structures with supports (like pergolas) they are constructed with steel which is more durable and lasts longer. Pergolas on the other hand, are made of treated timber and can require more regular maintenance because of exposure.
What is a Patio?
A patio is built with timber and is held up with at least four supports and can come with a variety of roofing. The timber can be stained or painted in different colours to match your house as well. Due to weathering, the timber construction does mean you will have to give it some TLC every now and again with a fresh coat of paint or sealing it with oil.
Patios work great if you ave some budget constraints that won’t allow you to buy a steel pergola. It can also suit some older style houses a little better because of its wood construction. If they are maintained properly they will last a very long time.
What is a Pergola ?
A pergola is essentially the same ‘design’ as a patio but is a much sturdier construction. This will mean next to no maintenance as well as a choice of colours. Like a patio, you can choose from a number of different roofing options (including an adjustable sunroof) depending on how much light you want to let in to your outdoor area.
What’s the Difference?
The main difference between the two is the materials it is constructed from and the cost. The materials (timber and wood) are both treated for outdoor conditions but due to exposure a patio may require a little more maintenance. Building anything with steel also provides a much stronger structure that will stand up to extreme weather conditions.
Which One is Right for You?
Before choosing between the two you really need to look at your budget and get a quote for both. Sometimes space is an issue as well and a small, wooden patio might be more suitable for your home. You will also have to look at what features you want with your outdoor area and if you are looking at adding a sunroof option you will have to go with a pergola.
While patios and pergolas are the main options for an outdoor area there are some others you could utilise. Having an awning can be a cheap way of covering your outdoor area if you are not sure about getting a permanent structure. You could even consider these options as you save up to fully upgrade your outdoor area.
No matter which one you choose, you will be enjoying a better outdoor experience than you ever have before. You will no longer have to worry about your BBQs being washed out by a freak summer storm. It is also a good chance to use some more exotic indoor plants outside as the patio and pergola can act as a greenhouse substitute.