Adding a shade structure to your outdoor space here in northern Nevada is always a good idea. It creates a functional outdoor extension to your interior living space for entertaining, relaxing, and enjoying our spectacular high desert sunsets. But when it comes to the right shade structure, narrowing your options can be a little daunting. They come in different options, sizes, materials, and with approximately one zillion customizable features. One of the biggest choices is narrowing down your material. Wood and aluminum are the two most common options, so let’s discuss the pros and cons of each.
Wooden Shade Structures
This is a classic material for the kinds of pergolas that have been enjoyed for centuries. Shade structures have evolved over the years, and wood can be a good choice for sturdy, beautiful shade structures that are both free-standing or attached to homes and building. In northern Nevada, wood must be maintained annually. You can do it yourself or call in a professional, but skipping maintenance of your wooden shade structure will likely become a costly oversight.
Wooden shade structures are versatile and work aesthetically with many different design styles. You can easily hang things — think flower pots, bird feeders, even a hammock — and wood may cost less than a metal alternative (though not always). On the downside, wood can be susceptible to insects, UV damage, and high winds, necessitating the regular maintenance we’ve already established as important.
The takeaway is simple. If you’re willing to accept and adhere to the upkeep, a wooden shade structure can be a beautiful choice for your outdoor space.
Aluminum Shade Structures
Aluminum came into vogue for shade structures in urban settings because of their versatility and naturally modern spin. But they’ve become increasingly common in residential applications because of their durability and performance. Some of the maintenance issues posed by wooden shade structures – high winds, insects, sun damage – won’t affect an aluminum installation that’s been properly installed. Plus, they come in a number of beautiful color and textures for a look that’s durable and attractive.
However, the greater level of expertise needed to install an aluminum shade structure can mean higher upfront costs. It’s a trade-off – more money at installation, less maintenance over the lifetime of the shade structure.
If you’re ready for more information about shade structures here in northern Nevada, the experts at Harris Landscape Construction can help. Contact us today for a free estimate and let’s get started.