A Pergola Guide

If you’re not sure what a pergola is, you’re not alone. Actually, many people think they are the same as a gazebo or trellis, when in fact they are quite different. Consisting of various shapes and sizes, a pergola can be the perfect addition to your home’s landscaping. 

Since our team here at Rollac knows you have plenty of questions, here is our guide to pergola shade.

Pergola in a backyard on a sunny day

What is a Pergola?

As you just discovered, a pergola is not a gazebo, trellis, or even an arbor or pavilion. Basically, a pergola is any outdoor structure using columns or posts to support an open roof comprised of rafters and beams.  

Though you’ll find pergolas in numerous styles and made of various materials, all pergolas have essential parts, such as columns, beams, and rafters. Optional components include stringers or purlins, which are placed on top of the rafters to provide more shade. A ledger board is found on attached pergolas, and is used in place of a beam to attach the pergola to your home.

Types and Styles of Pergolas

Here at Rollac, we know all homes are unique in one way or another. Fortunately, there are many types and styles of pergolas, such as:

1. Freestanding Pergolas

Stands separate from a home, usually in a garden or near a pool. Also used to create unique living space within a yard.

2. Attached

Directly attached to the wall, often used to cover the deck or patio. Popular with homeowners who want an outdoor area to be an extension of their home’s interior.

3. Arched

Provides your home with an elegant appearance. Unlike most pergolas that have flat roofs, an arched pergola lends an air of romance to the setting where it is used.

4. Louvered Pergolas

Open and close for more or less sun, louvered pergolas are available as automatic or manual. Does not use traditional slats, has louvers in place of rafters.

5. Awning

Attached to wall, no support posts or columns needed, installed over door or window for additional shade and pleasant look. Many people choose to add climbing vines to these pergolas for even more shade and a unique look.

Is a Permit Necessary to Build a Pergola?

You may or may not need a permit when installing a pergola. This will depend on the city and county where you live, so check local regulations. Also, if you belong to an HOA, check any guidelines in place about installing outdoor structures. 

Where Can Pergolas be Installed?

Since modern pergolas come in so many different sizes and styles, they can be installed almost anywhere.  

Many people love having a pergola installed over a deck or patio. Not only does this allow for the home’s interior to be extended, but it also turns an outdoor area into a true living area, which can be complemented with chairs, tables, a grill, and virtually anything else.

Pergolas are also great around swimming pools, spas, or a jacuzzi. By adding privacy screens and perhaps a patio cover, you can have plenty of privacy, while also creating a low-maintenance way to make your pool look even more beautiful.

Finally, pergolas make great additions to gardens or as accents for walkways. Bringing with them a wonderful architectural element, you can choose to add climbing plants or vines for an extra touch of elegance.

Benefits Pergolas Bring to Outdoor Space

When you have a pergola in your outdoor space, you can enjoy such benefits as:

  • cooler temperatures in the summer
  • keep out harmful UV rays
  • increased privacy
  • more ways to use your outdoor living areas
  • they can be installed virtually everywhere
  • an added sense of elegance and style to your home

Can You Install a Pergola Yourself?

Yes. You can choose to build your pergola from scratch, or purchase a prefabricated kit and put together one much like you would a puzzle. If you’re not comfortable with either of these options, hire a professional landscaper to build or install the pergola of your choice.

A Perfect Addition

Whether you want a pergola for added shade when entertaining guests on your patio, privacy when swimming, or simply as an addition to your already beautiful garden, choosing a Rollac pergola can make these and other wishes come true. If you’re ready to learn more about our automatic pergolas and their many benefits, contact us here at Rollac today.