Gazebo – what is it and what pros and cons it has?
A gazebo is an outdoor structure, often made of metal or wood, and usually featuring four or more posts, suspending a roof with a canopy on top to offer shade and shelter for those below. Gazebos have been used around the world for many years and come in various shapes, sizes, materials, and designs, and they can have all kinds of uses too.
Some people like to set up gazebos for special events that take place outdoors like weddings and barbecues. Others simply enjoy them as outdoor furniture, placing chairs and tables beneath to offer a shaded space for household members to sit and enjoy the fresh air without having to worry about the sun beating down on them or the rain falling on them.
Gazebos can offer protection from UV rays, bugs, rain, and more, and some models are equipped with curtains and netting too that can be pulled out to offer partial or total cover. They bring an aesthetic touch to any garden or backyard space, offering plenty of comfort for users, but some models can be a little weak and flimsy, struggling to cope in high winds or extreme weather situations.
Features to consider when choosing a gazebo for high wind
If you live in an area that has high winds, storms, and strong weather conditions in general, but still want to be able to sit outside and enjoy the shelter, comfort, and unique qualities offered by a gazebo, you’ll need to choose a gazebo specifically designed with high winds in mind. The best gazebo for wind should have a strong wind rating, able to withstand gusts of 30, 40, 50, or even 60+ mph. They should also have strong frames and roofs for additional protection, as well as attractive designs and other key features. There’s a lot to think about when buying a gazebo; read on to learn all about the most important factors to consider.
Naturally, if you’re buying a gazebo for high winds, you want it to be able to stand up and stay in place when those strong winds start to blow. This is why wind rating is perhaps the most important factor of all when it comes to windproof gazebos.
The wind rating tells us how much wind the gazebo can withstand without falling over and being blown out of position.
Some windproof gazebos have much stronger wind ratings than others. The Gazebo Penguin 43224 All-Season Gazebo, for example, has one of the best wind ratings of any model, as it can withstand gusts and gales of up to 80 mph. Other models are only capable of withstanding winds of about 30-40 mph.
Wind rating is important when buying a gazebo, but you should also remember to think about where you live and what kinds of winds exist in your area. There’s no need to pay extra and get a gazebo that can handle 90 mph winds if you only get 30/40 mph winds in your region, for example.
Another very important factor to think about when buying any kind of gazebo, especially one designed with wind resistance in mind, is the materials used to make it. You need to think about the materials used for the roof, but also the materials used to make the beams and posts as well, as they can sometimes differ.
The Yardistry Cedar Gazebo, for instance features a metal roof with strong cedar beams and posts. The cedar offers strength but also provides a unique aesthetic element, as many people enjoy having wooden items in their gardens and backyards and may prefer the traditional feel and look of wood.
Others, however, would argue that metal is the better material to choose, and there are plenty of high quality metal gazebos out there, like the Sojag 500-5157864 Meridien Hardtop Gazebo, for example. Metal gazebos like this one have the advantage of additional resistance to things like corrosion and general wear and tear over time.
Screens and curtains
You may also want to look at whether or not the gazebo you’re interested in purchasing has any kinds of screens or curtains available. A lot of top quality gazebos for high winds ship with at least some form of screen or curtain that can be attached to the corner posts and then drawn across to form sidewalls.
These sidewalls allow you to enjoy additional privacy in your gazebo, as well as blocking out sunlight, breezes, or keeping bugs at bay too. There are plenty of reasons to invest in a gazebo with screens or curtains, and some come with strong mosquito nets that are especially useful in areas with lots of mosquitoes. The Sunjoy Regency II Patio Gazebo is a good example of this.
The frame is one of the key parts of any gazebo.
This is the main ‘skeleton’ of the structure, helping to keep the gazebo standing up and resisting the wind and other elements.
Frames can be made from a variety of materials, including wood, as seen in the Yardistry Cedar Gazebo, or metals like aluminum and steel, as seen in the Outsunny Patio Dome Gazebo Shelter, which has a powder-coated steel frame.
When trying to choose a gazebo for high winds, pay attention to the materials used to make it and how strong it is too. Some gazebo frames are treated to be resistant to things like rust and corrosion, which can help the gazebo to have a longer lifespan and stay looking as good as new, even after several years of use.
The railings are another key part of the gazebo’s overall structure. These parts run along the sides or walls of the structure, used for holding the curtains or netting pieces in place. Some models don’t come with any railings at all, but if you want to be able to draw the curtains and create shady sidewalls for your gazebo, you’ll need to find a model that has railings.
Railings are usually made from steel or aluminum, as seen on the Kozyard Alexander Hardtop Aluminum Permanent Gazebo, which features removable steel railings across the four sides. These railings can be removed for your convenience, which is a nice bonus when you don’t need to draw the curtains, and they’re made from a strong and long lasting metal.
The posts are another essential element of any gazebo. You’ll usually get four posts, but some gazebos, like the Outsunny Patio Dome Gazebo Shelter, have six posts. Again, as with the other elements of your gazebo, it’s important to look at the strength and materials used for the posts. Wooden posts can be more attractive to some people, but metal posts may be more durable and resistant.
Some gazebos are designed with posts that are quite decorative. The Grand patio Patio Gazebo, for example, has particularly attractive posts that help to enhance the overall look and feel of the gazebo, ensuring that it’s strong and rigid, but also beautiful to look at. The posts are often one of the most ‘on view’ parts of the whole structure, so many people like to find models with nicely-made posts.
The last key part of the gazebo that you need to think about in terms of the overall structure is the roof. This is the part that will provide you with shade and protect you from the rain and even the sun’s UV rays, in some cases. It always helps to find a double-vented roof gazebo, like the Sunjoy Regency II Patio Gazebo, for example, as this helps to reduce the impact of the wind and helps with heat reduction too.
You can find some gazebos with metal roofs and others with canopy roofs. Canopy roof gazebos are usually more lightweight and easier to install on your own, but they don’t offer quite as much strength and protection as metal roof gazebos. The models with metal roofs, like the Gazebo Penguin 43224 All-Season Gazebo, are stronger against elements like snow and rain, and often better equipped to block out UV rays too, but are heavier and harder to set up.
A lot of gazebos don’t come with floors, but you can find some models that come with a built-in floor as well. This allows you to essentially use the gazebo as a whole separate outdoor room or space for gatherings and general comfort.
Having a floor in your gazebo helps to block out the bugs from beneath or allow you to take off your shoes and not have to worry about any wet or dirty ground underfoot. It can be a nice bonus, but you’ll often have to pay much more for a gazebo with a floor.
Dimensions and weight
Another key feature to think about when buying gazebo is its overall size and weight. Let’s begin with the size. You can find gazebos in a range of different sizes, often usually around 10 x 10 or 12 x 12 feet, and some models are only available in one size, while others are sold in a wide range of size options, like the Gazebo Penguin 43224 All-Season Gazebo, for instance.
It’s important to measure out the space in your yard or garden when you plan on installing the gazebo and then finding a model at just the right size for you. You also need to think about how you’re going to use the gazebo and how big it needs to be for the number of people gathered beneath. If you’re buying a gazebo for use at barbecues and big get-togethers, a larger model will probably be necessary.
You also need to think about the weight of your gazebo. They can vary in weight from as light as 50-60 lbs, like the SUNCROWN Outdoor Patio Garden Gazebo, right up to several hundred lbs. More lightweight models are easier to set up on your own, but can be a little less resistant to the wind, while heavier models are stronger and sturdier but may need professional installation.
One more thing to bear in mind when shopping for a gazebo is the warranty. In an ideal world, you’ll never need to worry about the warranty as your gazebo will remain in peak condition for many years. However, just in case anything goes wrong or any of the parts arrive broken or damaged in any way, it helps to know that the manufacturer will supply replacements or cover the costs of repairs.
Warranty policies can vary in terms of gazebos from one manufacturer to the next. Some don’t offer any warranty at all, while others offer 1-2 year warranties in general. The Gazebo Penguin Florence Solarium, for example, comes with a 1-year limited warranty, covering you for the first 12 months if anything goes wrong.
Of course, many people will also want to take the price into consideration when searching for their next gazebo too. As well as finding a gazebo that meets your needs and fits perfectly in your outdoor space, it’s also important to find one that matches up with your budget, and there are plenty of options out there.
The Grand patio Patio Gazebo, for example, is one of the most affordable windproof gazebos on our list, and there are some other terrific budget-friendly gazebos available too. Don’t feel like you need to spend huge amounts to get a great gazebo, as there are lots of lower priced models that can be perfectly satisfactory for many homeowners.
If you’re hesitating between two different gazebos and can’t quite seem to choose between them, it’s worth taking a look at what extra features they might offer. Sometimes, this is the best way to separate two models and find out which one has the edge.
Some gazebos, for example, may come with netting and curtains included, like the SUNCROWN Outdoor Patio Garden Gazebo, while others might be able to be bolted down to the ground for extra protection, like the Sunjoy Chatham Steel Hardtop Gazebo.
Gazebo cleaning and installation tips
In order to ensure that your gazebo stays upright and lasts for many years of comfort and enjoyment, you need to install it properly and look after it well as time goes by. Here are a few key tips to bear in mind during the installation and maintenance phases:
- Always read the manual included with your gazebo and follow the steps provided
- Most gazebos need at least 2/3 people to set up properly, so don’t try and go it alone
- You may need to get a professional to set up your gazebo in some cases
- If your gazebo has a cloth canopy, check the instructions to see if it can be washed in a machine. Otherwise, wash by hand now and then to prevent stains building up.
- Check the posts and frame of your gazebo often for marks or wear and tear and clean with a simple water and soap solution.
- Use a ladder to check the roof for any build-up of dirt, leaves, or debris.