Syzygy Pergolas & Pool Covers in Palm Beach
Syzygy Pergolas & Pool Covers in Palm Beach

Clash of the Patio Enclosures: Pergola vs. Sunroom

News   >  Knowledge Base   >  Clash of the Patio Enclosures: Pergola vs. Sunroom
Jason Herring
Administrator
DATE
June 22 2022
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Are you looking to install a patio enclosure that can turn your outdoor living space into an all-weather relaxation destination? When people envision a quality patio enclosure, often they think of a pergola or a sunroom. So, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each structure to help determine which is best suited to your outdoor lifestyle.

What is a pergola?

Consisting of vertical support columns topped with a roof, a pergola can take on many forms. While they can be built from wood, vinyl, or fiberglass, the most advanced pergolas available are fabricated from high-quality, extremely durable, powder coated aluminum. The open design pergolas promote natural airflow through the patio enclosure.

Pergolas can be designed as four-post standalone structures or supported by two columns with one side attached to the home. Attaching the pergola right to the home allows the patio enclosure to become a seamless extension of the indoor living space. Built as a standalone structure, a pergola can carve out a defined living space in a backyard, garden, or pool deck.

Pergola roofs can be customized with solid panels that create full-time shade or with adjustable louvers built to control the amount of sun and shade your patio enclosure creates. The louvered roof pergolas we design, alongside our manufacturing partner, Azenco, seal out the rain when closed.

What is a sunroom?

As its name explains, a sunroom is an added space directly connected to the home, often with all-glass walls and ceiling to allow natural light to bathe the room. Here in South Florida, sunrooms often incorporate an HVAC system to keep the space from overheating in the blazing sun. Often referred to as solariums, sun porches, Florida rooms, or patio rooms, sunrooms can be constructed as a standard home addition or available as a DIY kit for the home handyman.

More akin to a traditional indoor space than a pergola, a sunroom can house standard interior furnishings. Sunrooms are often favored by green thumb homeowners looking to ensure their plants get plenty of natural sunlight while living in a controlled temperature environment.

sunroom patio enclosure

Pergola: Pros and Cons

Depending on how you plan to use your outdoor space, there are some basic pros and cons when considering a pergola.

Pros

  • Pergolas can be a cost-effective addition to an existing patio, deck or pool deck.
  • A pergola is a great option for creating shade on the patio while maintaining an outdoor feel
  • Pergolas are a sought-after amenity for home shoppers, and may increase home’s value.
  • Pergolas provide flexibility in your outdoor living space with adjustable louvered roofs to control the sun shade balance

Cons

  • Pergolas, especially ones with adjustable louvered roofs, need annual maintenance to keep everything working optimally. (Luckily, our pergolas maintenance includes opening and closing louvers)
  • Unless you opt for a modern aluminum pergola, traditional materials like wood can result in a heavy structure, so weight should be considered when building on a deck or roof.
  • Retractable privacy screens can enclose a patio, and insect screens can block out bugs. Infrared heaters can take some of the evening chill out of the air, while pergolas promote airflow and control temperature.

Sunrooms: Pros and Cons

If you are considering turning your patio into a sunroom, you need to consider the following pros and cons.

Pros

  • A sunroom is essentially a full home addition customized to fit your needs as a three-season room, four-season room, or as an arboretum.
  • With tightly sealing windows, the sunroom can be climate controlled with an HVAC system
  • A sunroom creates a transitional room between your interior and exterior spaces.
  • Bountiful natural light creates the sense of being outdoors

Cons

  • Constructing a sunroom, especially from all glass, can be an expensive project necessitating full foundation, electrical, etc.
  • Maintaining climate control in a sunroom can be heavily energy-dependent, driving up utility costs over time.
  • While offering great outdoor views, sunrooms are decidedly indoor spaces.

Conclusion

A pergola and a sunroom are often discussed as similar options for patio enclosures, but as seen here, they vary greatly. Each offers its own unique benefits, but for homeowners looking to enjoy the outdoors, only a pergola can keep natural air flowing and give homeowners the ability to control the sun/shade balance on their patio. If you would like to discuss how we can customize a modern pergola to fit your outdoor lifestyle, contact us today.

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