It’s tough to imagine enjoying a day out in the great outdoors without some shade for your table. After all, the sun can get pretty hot, even if you live in a part of the country where it doesn’t shine year-round.
Teak Patio Umbrellas
Teak patio umbrellas can add to the enjoyment of your outdoor spaces, not only providing shade but handing other essential duties as well. When shopping for commercial patio umbrellas, you want to consider a couple of things – first, coverage, second features.
Pick an umbrella that is too small, and your guests will continually be playing a game of musical chairs trying to find a seat that is still in the shade. Pick one that is too large, and you’ll either end up with someone nearly poking an eye out, or it will end up doing a Mary Poppins on you in a sudden gust of wind.
Ideally, your teak patio umbrellas should extend just beyond the table, about a foot on either side. If you have an incredibly long one, you may want to go with a double umbrella or use two umbrellas if your table has two center holes in it. The idea is to provide your table and your guests with as much shade as possible.
Of course, shade isn’t the only thing an umbrella can do. When an impromptu shower rolls in, your guests can snuggle up to the table and let your teak patio umbrellas shed away the rain. A quality umbrella is not only UV resistant but rain resistant as well, ensuring that your annual barbecue won’t be rained out unexpectedly because a sudden storm came through.
Now let’s talk about features. Some umbrellas on the market today allow you to tilt them at an angle so that you can adjust to the movement of the sun through the sky during the day, keeping all your guests shaded. Some larger teak patio umbrellas have an intelligent pulley system built into them. This comes in handy when you want to raise and lower the umbrella. A top quality umbrella, especially umbrellas made of teak, can be quite heavy and awkward to operate, and a pulley system makes raising and lowering the umbrella a snap.
When shopping for patio umbrellas, you want to pay particular attention to the level of finish. Cheaper models use inferior materials, and the pieces of the mechanism may not fit together well. The craftsmanship and attention to detail, such as how the pin inserts into the pole to keep the umbrella open or the finishes of the seams on the umbrella itself, are signs of a quality umbrella. You also want to make sure that the pole is substantial, and if it is a two-piece pole, the screw hardware is robust and well made.
In contrast to the old days, umbrellas come in a plethora of colors, something for everyone. No matter which color you go with, make sure that the awning has some UV protection level so that your guests don’t unexpectedly get a sunburn when they mistakenly think they are staying out of the sun. Most reputable manufacturers and retailers also offer a warranty against fading or failure.
The best advice is to shop around. Realize that not all umbrellas are made the same. It is a significant investment, but one that will last a long time if you bought an umbrella made to last and take proper care of it. That means taking it down in the offseason or purchasing a cover for it so that you can leave it outside when it’s not being used.