You may have seen them around but weren't exactly sure what to call them. We call them pergolas, but they are also called arbors or trellises.
"Think of it as a cousin to a gazebo," said John from Decks R Us. "The difference is, a pergola doesn't have a roof like a gazebo. You will have a harder time enclosing it with screens. It is for partial shade or for looks only."
A pergola may not give you the function of a gazebo, but it makes a strong statement. Pergolas are great for people who want a quiet outdoor space when there isn't that much yard. Because it gives some shade, you can easily place some outdoor furniture underneath it and relax. It looks serene over a hot tub.
We can also add lights or ceiling fans to your pergola. This will increase the amount of time you spend on your deck or patio.
Choices with Our Pergolas
Pergolas are increasing in popularity giving way to more material and color choices from different manufacturers. We now offer clay and black vinyl pergolas along with traditional white and tan colors.
Pressure-treated wood is a good option for pergolas, as well. This wood can be stained a natural color or painted to match your deck or railing. Cedar is another good option. If you like the beauty of natural wood, cedar is definitely the right choice.
If you want a low-maintenance pergola but want a specific color or a bigger profile that is not available on vinyl, we have an option for that. We can build a pergola using free-foam PVC boards that can be left a natural white color or painted any color you choose. We install aluminum channel inside the PVC boards for strength. This is our most expensive pergola option. It requires custom work.
Cost of Our Pergolas
Pergolas are priced per square foot. As an example, if you want a 12'x12' pergola, that's 144 square feet. White and tan vinyl pergolas usually cost between $20 and $25 a square foot. The range is between $2,800 and $3,600. You could get the same size pergola in pressure-treated wood for around $15 to $20 per square foot. That's between $2,000 and $2,800. It's a little too early to say for sure with the new vinyl colors black and clay, but right now it looks like a clay vinyl pergola will be about 25% more expensive than white, and a black vinyl pergola will cost roughly 30% more.
Cedar pergolas greatly vary in price depending on the grade of cedar lumber you want to use. For example, if you want to use #1 grade wood with very few knots, cedar pergolas can cost a few dollars more per square foot than a white vinyl one. But if you choose a mid-grade wood with some knots, you can have your new pergola made of cedar for somewhere around $18 to $20 per square foot.
Paintable, free foam PVC pergolas usually cost about double the price of white or tan vinyl. That does not include painting.
Pergolas with Canopies
Canopies are a popular addition to a pergola.
Canopies have a track that mounts on the underside of your pergola where you manually pull the canopy in and out. Since it's made from a durable canvas, you can pull and it in and out over and over again and not worry about tearing. The material feels similar to a high-end patio umbrella.
If you're torn between a pergola or an awning, consider a pergola canopy combination. Because the canopy is on tracks, you can sit under the pergola and easily cover it with the canvas. You can have it completely open allowing the sun and air to flow in, and have a pergola look, or completely close it to full shade from the light and the sun.
You can get a canopy to match nearly any size pergola, covering both the width and the length. Choose from over 20 different fabric styles for the perfect compliment to your deck and home.
Canopies vary largely in price depending on the length of the drive beam. Please contact us for pricing info. If you have an existing pergola and you want us to add a canopy, it may cost you more depending if we need to retrofit your pergola to fit the canopy.
Sun Shade for Pergola
Customers love pergolas with shades. We found a company in Ohio that makes high quality, retractable shade curtains that work well on the side of pergolas and gazebos. As you can see in the picture below on the right, we can also modify your current deck railings to install these curtains, even if you don't have a gazebo or pergola.
These shades vary greatly in price so please contact us for a price quote.
A Grand and Unique Deck
"Unlike a gazebo, there isn't as much practicality with a pergola, but man, do they look good," says John. "It does provide some benefit. Depending on how the sun moves across your deck, it can give a few needed hours of shade each day to retreat from if you've been out there working on your tan."
You can determine how much shade you want. We customize our pergolas for each customer and we can build it so it gives more or less shade.
We can work with you find out how many cross pieces (or lattice) you want on top of your pergola. The more cross pieces you have, the more shade is provided.
A mild warning: Pergolas are much more of a permanent structure than they appear. Although it doesn't look like too much went into the construction, it really is securely built so it's not that easy to take down or change once it's constructed. And sometimes they do require a separate permit or zoning approval. But rest assured by going with Decks R Us, all of those headaches are taken care of as part of our Hassle Free Guarantee.
Consider if your family will be on your deck during peak sun times.
John says, "It probably would be well worth your time to track the amount of sunlight the area you are considering gets- throughout the year, remembering to lessen the time during the winter months. And if you think you'll be using your deck during the brighter-and hotter times of the day- a pergola can give some shade and keep you out of the direct sunlight.
A Real Life Story from One of Our Customers
Over in New Freedom, we were working with a customer who wanted a pergola, only he didn't really know it.
He knew he wanted something to give some shade, but didn't want to block out the sun entirely and since the deck was going to be facing south, he wanted a little something just to cool the deck down. He wasn't looking for something as big as a gazebo so we told him about pergolas.
"Oh ... I've seen those things but never knew what they were called."
We pointed out that a pergola would allow some shade from the summer sun and a place to drink an iced tea while he read his magazines and eat outdoors a few evenings a week but he was still a little unsure.
As we often do with our customers, we asked one of our past customers who got a pergola if he could come by and check it out.
And the minute he saw it, he knew that he wanted one, too.
Already have a deck but just want a pergola?
Contact Decks R Us and we can give you a free estimate on just a pergola