Whether you live in an area of summer heat waves, it just gets a little toasty outside, or it’s warm year ‘round, there are plenty of ways to stay cool regardless of your location.

Patio covers – One of the best ways to stay cool is to create shade, and there’s no better way to do this than to have a generous sized patio cover. These come in various types of materials and permanency. Lattice covers can provide 40%, 60% even complete shade. There are fabric awnings, some of which are retractable so you can put them out to give you shade or protect you from the rain, and roll them in when you want some sun. If your patio cover has a permanent ceiling, you can have a ceiling fan installed to help the air circulate in your new, shaded spot.  Misters attached to the ceiling can also help cool the surroundings.

Pergolas, Arbors or Gazebos - For the yard (or patio!) there are also several options. These terms are often used interchangeably, although they are different. A traditional arbor tends to be a wooden structure with an arched, open lattice top. Vines can be grown on them to provide a shaded path in your yard or garden. A pergola is a flat-topped wooden structure made with columns and widely spaced wooden slats to create an open top. Depending on where the sun is in the sky, such a structure can create shade and beauty for those sitting underneath. A gazebo is usually a free standing larger structure with a flat or pitched lattice or solid roof.

Remember with any of these options, cross-ventilation is key. For instance, putting a canopy up and then blocking three sides with a trellis, fence and thick bushes means no breeze can come through. This can make for a sticky situation, particular in more humid areas.

Make a list of your needs as a first step and then do some research online to see what makes the most sense for the exterior of your home.


Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed.  1 Peter 3:13

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