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How to Choose the Best Umbrella for Your Patio

So you’ve picked out your patio furniture and maybe it’s even set up, what’s next?

Many times, an umbrella is an afterthought. But protecting you and your family from the harsh rays of the sun and the sweltering summer heat is important.

This guide will help you find the best umbrellas for your outdoor living space!

The first step is determining where your new umbrella will go and what area you are trying to throw shade on!

Center Pole (Table) Umbrellas:

If your umbrella is needed to go in table, the first determination is what size hole your table has. Umbrellas come in various pole diameter sizes, ranging from 1.5” all the way to as big as 2.25”, so you don’t want to get one that won’t fit through the hole in your table!

If you don’t want your umbrella directly in the center of your table, another option is to have an offset or cantilevered umbrella next to the table (discussed more below). This option gives you greater flexibility but is somewhat less traditional and many people prefer having one umbrella just for the dining area.

When choosing an umbrella to go directly in the table the next step is to determine the size and shape you will need to adequately provide shade for the seating area.

If your table is round or square, there are a myriad of square and round umbrellas for a table, some as big as 13 feet, but again, the larger ones have bigger pole diameters so be sure that you check the pole size before ordering. If your table is a rectangle or oval, we offer large rectangle umbrellas as well. Same pole size considerations apply.

Seating areas:

If you’re looking to provide shade for an area aside from a dining table, for example, chaise lounges, or a outdoor seating, a plethora of options exist!

While a traditional center pole umbrella placed in between two chaise lounges with a freestanding base will do the trick, another option is to go with an offset (side pole) or cantilevered umbrella.

Depending on the make and model, an offset umbrella offers not only great shade coverage but also flexibility. Properly placed, these unique umbrellas are able to rotate 360 degrees, so they can shade more than one seating area or even a portion of a pool, without moving the umbrella!

So for example, you could place a cantilever umbrella so that it can cover both the spa section of your pool or rotate to cover nearby chaise lounges.

These unique shade products can not only rotate, but also tilt as much as 45 degrees, so as the sun moves from one side of your backyard or patio, by rotating and tilting the umbrella canopy, you can block the sun and create a shaded area in another section of your outdoor environment!

Cantilever Umbrellas:

Like their center pole counterparts, offset umbrellas come in round, square and rectangular canopy shapes and in a variety of sizes from 8.5 feet to as big as 13 feet! They are available in both aluminum and natural bamboo frames with a huge selection of canopy color choices.

Canopy Selection:

Depending on the make and model, our manufactures offer excellent choices in both color and grade of outdoor fabric. These durable products are built to withstand the environment but we strongly recommend purchasing an umbrella cover to extend the life of your canopy. And most canopies are easily replaced down the line, should this need arise. Many manufacturers offer Sunbella® fabrics discussed more here.

Umbrella Base:

While some umbrellas come with a base, most require this as an add on item, so be sure to make sure you have the proper base to keep your umbrella grounded. This article will assist you with choosing the right base for your umbrella and also discuss in ground mounting options!

The Shade Experts at Umbrella Specialist are here to assist you through every step of the process. Give us a call at
954-376-3766 and tell us about your patio so we can help chose the perfect shade solution!