You may be looking around your backyard one day and a thought strike you: There’ something missing, here. It could be that you want more plants to decorate your yard. Maybe you would like to install a tiki torch or two. One of the easiest ways to keep your company cozy and safe from the rain and the sun’s rays is to install awnings over your back porch.


Different types of awnings

The subject of awnings is a very broad one. Some consider awnings any type of covering overshadowing a resting place for homeowners and guests alike. Let’s look at the types of awnings, then we’ll get into the nitty gritty to discern the differences between them.


Roll out awnings are usually made of canvas or weatherproof plastic. Photo courtesy of Kensington Garden Rooms


Umbrellas are highly portable and are mostly meant to be used for short stints, then folded and stored when not in use. Photo courtesy of Room Design and Plans Designs.


Gazebos are typically used as a place of private conversation. Photo courtesy of Pergola and Gazebo Ideas, Designs.


Cabanas are highly portable and can add an additional room to your house, transforming the back patio into an outdoor lounge. Photo courtesy of Resort Cabanas


When to use them

Whether you’re looking to keep your guests in the shade or to protect them from inclement weather, here are a few examples of situations in which you would want to deploy your secret weapon: The awning.

The most popular awning is the roll out variety. These awnings can be kept open, covering your entire patio all year round. These hardy awnings will protect you and your guests during more inclement weather and shade you from the sun during clearer months.

Umbrellas are more of the portable variety of awning. You would usually uncoil an canvas umbrella on a sunny day, but store it in a cool, dry place when it begins to rain. If you decide to settle for an umbrella made of a more durable plastic, then it would be safe to sit under this type of awning on a rainy day.

Gazebos provide a safe haven from the harsh glare of the sun on a summer day. They also help divert heat from permeating your cool space. Typically, gazebos are used for short spells, as a spot to sip on lemonade or share a cup of coffee with your loved one. We’ve seen all kinds! Straw gazebos don’t protect against rain. Neither do the standard wooden-plank type, but they do serve well to keep you in the shade.

Cabanas can be used rain or shine. You can move them further away from the house to encourage guests to explore the area around your outdoor pool or to give guests some legroom, if you’re hosting larger parties, so that everyone can feel at home in their own safe space.


Those are just a few ideas for different kinds of awnings you can use to create an extra space where you can relax and enjoy the great outdoors from the comfort of your own backyard. Feel free to customize your setup the way that fits your lifestyle!