Aluminum Patio Covers VS. Metal Patio Covers
Choosing the right patio cover for your house may be a difficult task, and before making that decision the preferable thing to do is research what your options are. There are many types of patio covers, pergolas, gazebos and awnings that you can choose from and are made from different materials such as metal, aluminum, wood, vinyl and fabric.
There are advantages and disadvantages of having either a Metal Patio Cover or an Aluminum Cover.
If you are making a decision based on price, you should know Metal is usually cheaper than aluminum. Therefore the patio cover will eventually cost less. However do keep in mind metal is less durable than aluminum. This is where you can base your decision. If you are looking for a patio cover for a short term, for example a contractor trying to sell a house, or you in a rental home for a short period of time, you might consider going with metal but keep in mind it might be more expensive in the long term since you will need to paint or replace it, since it will accumulate rust easily.
Metal is less durable than aluminum
If you are making a decision on long term and maintenance free you might go with an Aluminum patio cover since, Aluminum will never rust. Even galvanized metal will eventually rust. You have to take into consideration when making a final decision if you want to purchase a durable patio cover versus a cheaper patio cover. You want to have your patio cover in the best condition at all times and will not want to be worried about it rusting.
Which patio cover option is the best for you?
If you are thinking of a DIY patio cover and want to install it yourself you should also consider on how easy or hard installation may be. Metal is much harder to work with it is heavy and stronger, in other words drilling can be very difficult. Aluminum is a very light and soft metal and easy to work with. Metal structures will be heavier than aluminum structures therefore you will need a better support for you patio cover.
Metal Structures are Stronger than Aluminum Structures. The metal structure can hold a lot more weight in comparison with an aluminum structure. For example the metal structure is great for big snow loads since it is stronger and will hold more weight without a problem. If you would want to use an Aluminum patio cover where it snows more you will need to have bigger beams than the equivalent metal beams in order to get the same span.
You will want to spend a greater amount of time under your patio cover if you know you will be well protected and not as hot. Metal is getting hotter than aluminum and Metal might not be a recommended choice if you live where the summers are really hot.
An Aluminum Patio cover’s durability is much better than a metal patio cover, because aluminum will last longer without need of maintenance and will never rust while metal on the other hand will rust. Aluminum is a great example of a durable outdoors product, because its durability makes it easy to maintain and a great long term option. For a patio cover that is exposed to all the elements such as rain, UV Protection, and humidity, durability is a very important factor you should consider. Just think about all the outdoor products in the market such as patio furniture, windows, gutters etc they are all made out of aluminum. In order to protect the metal patio cover you will need to paint it once in a while and it is very hard to get the same result of a powder coated aluminum patio cover (like your car) compared to brush painting.
In conclusion usually metal structures will be cheaper and stronger but less durable and eventually you will need to paint them and be careful of rusting. Aluminum patio covers are durable and lighter and aluminum is the alloy that is used for the outdoors, we recommend aluminum patio covers, however if you are living in a high snow load area or you are limited on your budget you can combine those two materials, use the post and the support beam from metal. They are relatively protected by the roof cover, but never compromise on the top and make sure that it’s made from aluminum.
Important notice, you should be a smart shopper and always ask if the roof of the patio cover is made from aluminum, since 80% of your patio cover kit will be the roof patio cover, and aluminum is more expensive material than metal, a lot of the companies will advertise that they are selling aluminum patio cover but you will only get aluminum structures and a metal roof patio cover.