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Patio Umbrella Buying Guide: Read This Before You Buy

A patio umbrella is considered a must-have accessory when it comes to enjoying outdoor spaces. Shade on hot summer days is provided, as well as style and sophistication being added to a backyard or patio. 

Consider these tips we provided to assist in you in making the right choice.

  1. Consider the size of your patio or outdoor space. Before you start shopping, measure the area where you plan to place your umbrella. You’ll want to choose an umbrella that is proportionate to the size of your space. Here is a great blog showing how a patio umbrella is measured. A large umbrella can overwhelm a small patio, while a small umbrella may not provide enough coverage for a large outdoor area.

  2. Take into consideration the dimensions of your existing base if you’re not planning to buy a new one along with the umbrella. The size of umbrella poles can vary significantly based on their dimensions and shapes. The rule of thumb is that the larger your umbrella, the more substantial your base needs to be. If you intend to use a pre-existing base, it’s crucial to know the diameter of the base sleeve to ensure it will accommodate the dimensions of the new umbrella you’re planning to acquire. Base sleeves are available in sizes such as 1.5 inches, 2.0 inches, and 2.25 inches, which are suitable for most center pole umbrellas. As the saying goes, ‘Measure twice, cut once!’ This holds true when it comes to ensuring a proper fit.

  3. Think about the location of your patio umbrella. If you’re placing your umbrella on a deck or patio that receives full sun, you’ll want to choose one that provides maximum shade coverage. If your outdoor space is mostly shaded, you may be able to opt for a smaller umbrella. If you going to put the umbrella in water, consider buying an all aluminum frame so it doesn’t rust or swell.

  4. Decide on a style and color. Patio umbrellas come in a wide range of styles, from classic to modern. You’ll also want to consider the color of the umbrella and how it will complement your existing outdoor décor. If you’re not sure what style or color to choose, opt for a neutral option like beige or white, which will match with most outdoor décor styles. Both our Bambrella and Galtech lines offer several dozens of colors to choose from. 

  5. Consider the type of umbrella. There are mainly 2 types of patio umbrellas available, traditional AKA center poles or cantilevers, AKA offset or side poles. Traditional umbrellas have a central pole and a canopy that can be opened and closed manually or with a crank. Cantilever umbrellas have a central pole that is offset, allowing the umbrella to be placed in the center of a table or seating area. the Offset of the umbrella post used in a  cantilever design allows for more versatility in terms of shade coverage.

  6. Look for a high-quality canopy. The canopy of your patio umbrella is the most important part, as it provides the shade and protection from the sun. Look for a canopy made from a durable and UV-resistant material, such as polyester or acrylic. These materials are also resistant to fading and mildew, which will help prolong the life of your umbrella.

  7. Invest in a durable frame. The frame of your patio umbrella is just as important as the canopy. Choose a frame made from durable materials such as aluminum, wood/bamboo or steel. These materials are lightweight yet sturdy, and they will be able to withstand the elements.

  8. Consider whether or not you really need that  tilt function. Although they allow you to adjust the angle of the canopy, which can provide much-needed shade as the sun moves across the sky, it is often the weakest link in a market umbrella. 

  9. Consider the cost. Patio umbrellas can range in price from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars. While it’s important to invest in a high-quality umbrella that will last for many years, you don’t want to overspend. Set a budget before you start shopping, and stick to it.

  10. Check out the warranty. Many patio umbrella manufacturers offer warranties on their products. Make sure you understand the terms of the warranty before you make your purchase. This will give you peace of mind knowing that if anything goes wrong with your umbrella, you’ll be covered.

  11. Keep maintenance in mind. Before making your purchase, consider the maintenance required to keep your patio umbrella in good condition. Look for umbrellas that are easy to fix and have available replacement parts.