Wooden Gazebos vs. Metal GazebosDecember 21, 2015 by Philip Kessler | 1 Comment
Gazebos provide homeowners with an easy way to add shade and style to any outdoor space. They can be constructed on decks or on the grass for an attractive addition that’s functional and enjoyable. The two most common types of materials tend to be wood or metal, and the right choice for you is a very personal one. It’s a good idea to take a look at the differences between models.
If you’re working with a deck and have concerns about the weight, then metal may be the best choice for you. Metal gazebos weigh far less, so that makes them a prime choice for existing wood decks or balconies that may not be able to effectively carry the extra load of a wood gazebo. However, the additional weight of wood is truly an advantage if you live in a windy area and want to be sure that your new structure won’t blow over in a storm. The lighter weight of metal buildings makes them more likely to damaged and cause damage when lifted. No matter which type, you’ll want to make sure the structure is securely anchored and if on a deck, that below the gazebo there is some reinforcement of the foundation.
Metal requires less maintenance in general. You can go with powder coated designs that are highly resistant to rust. By contrast, a wooden gazebo will need some regular care and attention to keep them looking sharp. If you love the look of wood and are fine with updating the clear coat or stain every year, then this is a fine choice for you. If you’re constantly pressed for time and want less maintenance, then you may want to go with the metal construction.
Wood has a soft, welcoming look that many people love. Metal, by contrast, has a more contemporary feel to it. Either one will work with most homes, so this is a very personal choice. If you want a lighter finish, then wood may be a better choice because you can easily stain or paint it to fit with any color scheme. With coated metal, however, you may be limited to shades of black, deep brown, or silver. There may be other types of materials available, but if you’re looking for that wood feel, you’re not going to get it from painted metal.
One area where there is a clear difference is in the cost. In general, a wood gazebo costs more than metal. It’s heavier and so costs more to transport (unless for some reason you’re building a gazebo out of solid steel). Where cost is a concern, an aluminum construction might make the most sense.
The weight of wood comes into play when determining how large an area the gazebo can span. The lighter weight of hollow metal joists and thinner panels allows designers to create larger spans so that you can have a bigger entertainment area. If you’re interested in a very large design, then the metal options may be more useful for you, unless you’ve got a design that is architecturally sound for wood beams.
This is a major concern for homeowners who want the investment to last. The great news is that metal and wood gazebos are both highly durable. Wood will need to be treated annually to prevent rust and insect damage. While metal structures require less care, they do still need some level of attention. It is recommended that you check for areas of rust annually and treat them. It will only take a few moments, but it can allow your metal gazebo to last as long as a wooden structure.
When it comes to wood or metal, there is no clearly superior product, but only because the factors which determine what’s right for one person may not be the same for another. Evaluate your own needs, sense of style, and personal budget. Take the time to consider where your gazebo will be placed, how long you plan to have it, and what you want in the final look before you make a final purchase.