Pergolas can make for a beautiful addition to your home. Seeing a nicely designed pergola on your home can make your backyard or front yard even more inviting. Pergolas are even great for climbing plants which increases their aesthetic appeal. Pergolas can be made with a variety of materials, including wood, vinyl, and even timber. The most common material used is wood or vinyl, thus ensuing the debate about which material is better? Wood or Vinyl?
There are many advantages and disadvantages to wood or vinyl pergolas. Determining which one is better ultimately depends on what suits your needs best. In this blog, we will discuss the various pros and cons of vinyl vs wood pergolas to inform you as you consider what best suits your needs.
Finally, be sure to stay tuned for some bonus material at the end of this blog that you won’t want to miss 😉
Vinyl pergolas give a nice modern look to your home, along with other advantages. So let’s check out the pros and cons of a vinyl pergola.
- Durable: Vinyl pergolas are durable in all weather conditions. Because of the material vinyl is made of, it can withstand against a variety of weather conditions without being impacted by extremely cold weather or a high UV index. Vinyl that is reinforced by an inner core of aluminum is known to be extremely durable. If you live in an area that experiences a variety of weather conditions, then vinyl could be a good option for you to consider if you are not looking to do a lot of maintenance, which brings us to our next point.
- Minimal Maintenance: Because the color of vinyl goes right through the material, the color is more resistant to peeling, chipping, and fading. Therefore, vinyl does not require as much cosmetic maintenance compared to wood. The maintenance that would be required with vinyl is just an annual pressure wash. This helps to remove a lot of the dirt, grime, and dust that may build and cake onto the material overtime. This feature can save you time in the long-run so you’re not spending every weekend cleaning your pergola.
- Shorter Installation Time: Most pergolas come in ready to install kits that can easily be assembled. Assembling a pergola does not demand a lot of experience or tools, therefore installation can happen a lot quicker compared to wood. If you hire a professional to install the pergola, the installation time will go a lot quicker which can save you money in labor cost. On the other hand, it is also something you can install yourself. If you are short on time, this could be an important factor.
- Limited Color Options: Most pergolas come in white, beige, or tan, therefore you are limited in the customizing options you have available as it relates to the aesthetics of your pergola.
- More Costly: Given that vinyl is made from the same wood structures, but simply covered in vinyl it can be more costly. Also, typically wood is more affordable than vinyl, which explains why vinyl pergolas cost more money. When looking at your budget for a pergola, this is an important factor to consider.
- Can’t be Connected to a Home: Because of the material of vinyl, it cannot be connected to a home very easy. Therefore, having a vinyl pergola will require it to be a standalone structure. This is important to consider if you were looking at attaching a pergola to your house.
Wood pergolas provide a nice, classy look to your property, and are widely popular among many people with a desire for aesthetic appeal. Although wood pergolas overall require a bit more, they can make for a very nice touch to your property.
- Aesthetically Pleasing: Wood pergolas are known for being aesthetically pleasing, giving your property a nice, classy look. Also, the natural scent of wood can be rather pleasant on the senses when sitting under your pergola. If aesthetics are especially important to you, then this feature of wood is worth considering as you decide which pergola is best for you.
- Budget Friendly: Wood is cheaper than their vinyl counter parts for pergolas. Wood that is pressure treated and stained tends to be more affordable. However, as you get into solid, sturdy wood such as redwood or cedar, then the price starts to increase.
- Can be Modified: Because of the wooded material of a pergola, you can easily modify it to whatever style you would like. You could also attach it to your home if that fits better than being a stand-alone pergola. If you are looking to attach a pergola to your home, the wood option would be most suitable for that.
- Long-Term Maintenance: Because wood is susceptible to rotting, you’ll need to maintain awareness of the conditions of your pergola to ensure any rotting pieces are being replaced. Secondly, wood can warp, bow, or even crack which can become an issue overtime requiring routine maintenance. Additional maintenance would include re-staining and re-painting due to the constant exposure to weather conditions.
- Subject to Rotting and Damage: Wood is easily susceptible to rotting and damage, which can attract termites and other unwanted critters or creatures that like to feast on wood. Although this will not always happen, you will need to be vigilant in monitoring your wood to address an early sign of rotting.
- Longer Instillation Time: Wood typically takes longer to install. The various pieces that go with wood and its increased weight depending on the type of wood could increase instillation time.
There you have it! The advantages and disadvantages of Vinyl vs Wood pergolas for you to consider as you decide between purchasing a wood or vinyl pergola. Given that pergolas are especially popular during the summer months, what about the other months where it is a little bit cooler, or sometimes cold? Herein lies our bonus material!
Photo Credit: Western Timber Frame
Ever considered if a pergola has use in the wintertime? While pergolas make for excellent structures during the summertime, pergolas in the winter can make for a nice cozy experience. However, there may be a few things you can do to increase the warmth of your pergola making it a nice, cozy place to snuggle in during the winter months.
- Add a Firepit: Adding a firepit to your pergola offers fun outdoor activities for the wintertime including making smores, or just warming up by the campfire. The perfect blend of intense heat from the fire blended with a cold night creates for a nice, cozy atmosphere. Before placing a firepit under your pergola, be sure to consult with a professional first.
- Add an Awning or Covers: Having a retractable awning or cover on all four sides of your pergola can assist with keeping some of the cold out of your pergola, therefore giving you a bit more of a warmer space to enjoy. This could also help with keeping leaves and other weather elements out of the pergola.
So there you have it!
Are you interested in getting a pergola or exploring more about what that could look like? Be sure to get a free quote and chat with our consultants on what could best fit your home.