The following glossary will provide more information about the terms and types of patio covers installed throughout the Bay Area. This information may help you better communicate with your patio cover company and ensure that you’re both speaking the same language.
adjustable patio covers
Adjustable patio covers are those that can be moved, opened, retracted, stretched or otherwise adjusted to provide shade and protection in different areas. They may be permanently affixed with a flexible shade cover or they may be fully movable with bases that can be placed anywhere on the patio for truly adjustable cover.
Also known as: temporary patio covers, movable patio shades, flexible patio shade covers, retractable patio shades
attached patio cover
A patio covering that is attached to the home, business or building next to the patio that needs covering. Attached patio covers usually affix to the home or building at the exterior wall, roof or eaves. These patio coverings may require special engineering services or special attachment devices to prevent damage to the solid home structure.
Also known as: attached patio coverings
Awnings are used for decoration, business name advertising, and protection from the elements. Most awnings are made of a light aluminum supports covered with fabric or acrylic-coated fabric sheets to shelter patios from sun and rain. Awnings may be permanently affixed, stand-alone, removable, manually-retractable, automatically retractable or motorized.
Also known as: canopy, patio awnings, patio cover awnings
Canopies are fabric-covered structures that are used as patio coverings to provide protection from the elements, decoration or business identification. Canopies are usually free-standing or may be attached to a building on one side and to support posts on the other side.
Also known as: patio canopies, patio shade canopy, patio canopy
canvas patio covers
Patio covers with canvas shade covers are known as canvas patio covers. These may be temporary or permanent bases with canvas sails, umbrellas, rollout shades or awnings that block the sun and light rain using canvas or another tightly-woven shade cloth.
Also known as: canvas patio shades, fabric patio covers, shade covers for patios, cloth shade patio covers
commercial patio covers
Any patio cover built for or useful in a commercial patio setting can be considered a commercial patio cover. These may be rollable patio covers that affix to the sides of buildings, metal commercial patio covers or permanent pergola patio covers that provide visual appeal and shade. Commercial patio covers are often found at restaurants and cafes, public building courtyards, schools and daycare centers, stores and shopping malls, civic buildings and other commercial locations that need shelter for patrons.
Also known as: school patio covers, restaurant patio covers, commercial building patio coverings, cafe patio shades
freestanding awning patio covers
Most patio cover awnings attach to and are supported by a home, building or other structure. Freestanding patio awning covers do exist. These are supported by posts poured into concrete footings or heavy moveable bases.
Also known as: temporary patio cover awnings
lattice patio cover
Lattice patio covers are those made of wood or metal strips that are equally spaced to allow for filtered sunlight to pass through only certain areas.
Also known as: lattice patio coverings
louvered patio covers
Louvers, or slats, can be a popular choice for patio covers because they allow some sun to filter through while still providing a high degree of sun protection. Louvered patio covers may have fixed louvers or louvers that can be moved to provide different degrees of shade.
Also known as: louvered patio shades, louvered sun shades
metal patio covers
Metal patio covers are made of several types of metal, including aluminum, steel and corrugated metal. Metal patio covers are easy to assemble and relatively simple to install. They are a favorite of customers because of the variety of colors, sizes and styles in which they are available. Metal patio covers are hardy, durable and resist harsh outdoor conditions and insect activity that can deteriorate other materials.
Also known as: aluminum patio covers, steel patio covers, metal patio canopies, metal patio shade covers
A covering stretched or attached across the top of a patio space to block sun and to keep the patio area cooler. Patio covers are also sometimes used to protect areas from light rains, making patios usable even on less-than-perfect days. Some people use patio covers and shade covers to provide shade and protection for vehicles such as cars, boats and motorcycles. Patio covers may be made of wood, metal, vinyl, canvas or other fabric, and may be temporary, movable, retractable or permanently affixed.
Also known as: patio coverings, lattice patio covers, solid patio covers, canvas patio covers, gazebo patio covers, residential patio covers, commercial patio covers
pergola patio covers
Pergolas are popular patio cover options. They are permanent structures, usually made out of wood, aluminum or vinyl faux wood. Pergolas are usually freestanding and anchored to the ground with thick posts that support a patio cover top made of a few cross-wise beams and many long-wise beams that are slotted to allow for some sin to get through while still providing ample shade and protection. Pergolas may be covered with ivy, wisteria or other climbing plants for visual appeal and even more protection from the sun.
Also known as: pergolas, four season pergolas, all season pergolas, patio shade pergolas
retractable patio covers
Retractable patio covers that can be manually or mechanically retracted, rolled or collapsed. Retractable patio awnings are popular over patios and yards where coverage is only wanted during peak sun hours to shade patios from heat and sun.
Also known as: retractable patio awnings
solid patio covers
Solid patio covers are made of a solid piece of wood, metal, fabric or other material that completely blocks the sun from coming through the patio cover. This provides complete shade in the area under the solid patio cover.
Also known as: gapless patio covers, solid wood patio covers, solid aluminum patio covers, solid patio coverings, complete patio covering
vinyl patio covers
Vinyl patio covers are plastic installations that can be made to look similar to wood. However, they require less maintenance and can last much longer than wood structures. They are also popular because they are usually less expensive than metal patio covers and have a similar life span. Vinyl patio covers are usually easy to assemble and affordable. Recycled vinyl patio covers are also available for customers who are eco-conscious.
Also known as: vinyl patio shade covers, faux wood patio covers
The amount of wind (usually measured in wind speed) that a patio covering can withstand without collapsing or becoming damaged.
Also known as: wind speed, patio cover wind rating
wood patio coverings
Wood patio covers are popular types of patio coverings because they are inexpensive, attractive and can be painted or stained to match the outdoor environment. Wood from maple, cedar, bamboo, and other choices give customers freedom, as do the number of possible designs, including lattice patio coverings, pergola patio covers, and more.
Also known as: wood patio covers, bamboo patio coverings, permanent wood patio coverings
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