When it comes to designing a backyard space, San Antonio homeowners have a lot to choose from. Not only can you decide on the landscaping of your yard and deck it out with plants, trees, and shrubs, but you also choose among many different types of outdoor shade structures. Three of the most popular include patio covers, pergolas, and gazebos, all of which provide a stylish place to relax in your yard and spend time with your family and friends. Unfortunately, they’re also easily confused, causing many homeowners to refer to one structure when they really mean another.
In this informative post, learn about the structural differences between a gazebo, pergola, and patio cover and find out which one is best for your backyard.
What is A Gazebo?
A gazebo is a free-standing structure (sometimes hexagonal or octagonal in shape) with an opaque and horizontal roof. Since they provide full overhead shade, gazebos are often used for relaxation or entertainment, such as enjoying your backyard on a hot summer day, or even, during a rainstorm. Unlike pergolas, gazebos often have raised deck floors, as well as a unique style of roof, often in the form of a dome or pyramid. Moreover, the roofs themselves can have single or double tiers with different variances.
What is A Pergola?
A pergola is a shaded structure that’s made using a “latticework,” or criss cross pattern of beams and rafters, as opposed to a solid piece of metal or wood. Unlike gazebos, the roofs of pergolas are made of horizontal plants (rafters)—with space between them. This allows for sunlight to shine through so that the structure itself provides only partial shelter and shade. Pergolas are often used to create either a semi-shaded walkway, passageway, or sitting area, or for creating a mostly-shaded alcove in gardens, where plants and vines can climb.
What Are Patio Covers?
Unlike pergolas and gazebos, patio covers are exactly what they sound like: freestanding or attached outdoor shade structures that go over a patio, with a roof overtop. Patio covers are usually attached to the outer wall of a home and connect to the roof (making them great home extensions) however they can also be installed over a patio in your yard or garden. Moreover, since patio covers come with a permanent roof (made using a solid lattice) they provide full protection from the rain, wind, and sunlight up above. This makes them great for both protecting your patio furniture, and covering an entertainment space (or outdoor kitchen) in your backyard.
Factors to Consider When Choosing Between A Gazebo, Pergola, or Patio Cover
Consider the following factors when it comes to choosing what type of shade structure is best for your backyard.
Area & Size
One of the first things you should consider when deciding between a pergola, patio cover, or gazebo in San Antonio is the size of your backyard. Here’s why: a gazebo may not be the best choice if your space is small, since it makes your backyard look even smaller. Since gazebos are both fully opaque and look best when independent, they can often occupy more space visually, and often conceal parts of your yard. In a small space especially, this can create a confined appearance, making your yard look small. On the other hand, pergolas and patio cover extensions can make it feel like your yard is more open if they occupy the same amount of space.
Indoors to Outdoors Extension
Another thing to keep in mind is gazebos look best when they stand independently—being a central focal point in a garden or backyard. This means that if you want a shade structure that is an extension of your home, gazebos are generally not a good choice. On the other hand, both pergolas and patio covers look great when attached to existing structures, such as your roof.
In addition, since patio covers and adjacent pergolas are often seen as a home extension, as opposed to gazebos which are sometimes considered a “decorative piece,” the former options are much more likely to add to the value of your home.
Though the cost of pergolas, patio covers, or gazebos in San Antonio Texas can range significantly, depending on the size of the structure, the scope of the build, and the materials used, generally speaking, pergolas and patio covers cost much less than gazebos. The reason is because of the extra roofing, siding, and style elements required to build a gazebo.
Get Your Custom San Antonio Patio Cover or Pergola from Serview!
If you’re interested in installing a custom patio cover in San Antonio or a one-of-a-kind San Antonio pergola, contact Serview today! We’re proud to be the #1 choice for patio covers and pergola construction in San Antonio, Texas, and can help you pick and choose from hundreds of options to make your shade structure one of a kind. Paired with our world-class team of backyard construction professionals and patio builders, we’ll miraculously transform your San Antonio patio into something you’ll enjoy all year!
Contact us today to schedule your free consultation and find out how we can transform your backyard today!