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What to Consider Before Buying a Patio Umbrella

For proper shade, safety and protection, you need to pick the best patio umbrella for your cherished backyard space. Take a look at our product recommendations and tips on buying the perfect umbrella for your needs!

Only Use Table Umbrellas on Level Patios

Table umbrellas are a combination of a patio table with a hole in the center and a properly placed umbrella, typically sold separately but sometimes available as a single package. The two complement each other both in design and support, making this a common option. However, a table umbrella cannot easily be moved, and it requires a perfectly level surface to prevent wobbling. That makes this combination most suitable for level patios with plenty of open, unused space, large deck spaces, poolsides, and other highly developed areas.

Consider Mobile Shade

Freestanding umbrellas are the best patio umbrella for all-around yard protection. You can move them to wherever kids, guests, or you personally want to sit, which makes them ideal for larger yards with lots of open space. Level ground also isn’t nearly as important, so you can set them up in the grass or on the patio with equal ease. However, they don’t have as much support as table umbrellas and will tilt over easily, so you will need to focus on maintenance and always take time to put the umbrella away when you are finished.

Get a Patio Umbrella That is Larger Than Your Sitting Area

For proper shade space, you need a table patio umbrella that’s larger than the table or area that you are sitting at (otherwise, at eye level, you won’t get much sun protection). As a general rule look for umbrellas that are a couple feet wider than the table you have. Most home patio umbrellas are nine feet in diameter, which fit tables around 36 to inches in diameter – extra-large tables should have even larger umbrellas around 11 feet. If you only want a single-person umbrella or a small table umbrella, then you can consider going down to 6.5 feet, but in these cases larger is usually better. Plus: Check out other outdoor projects to improve your yard!

Use a Tilting Umbrella for Rotating Shade

A tilting umbrella can be angled to protect against sunlight coming from a specific direction. If you use your patio in the early morning or late evening when the sun is low in the sky, a tilting patio umbrella is a good choice for your house. They are also useful in wide-open spaces where there are no buildings nearby to add extra shade.
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