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Category: Patios

Writing samples on the subject of patios.

Light Your Fire – Fire Pits vs. Outdoor Heaters – 437 Words

Outdoor living has come a long way in recent years and increasingly the indoor lifestyle is migrating to the patio for relaxing, dining, and entertaining. People are more interested than ever in investing in their outdoor spaces for year-round use. So, wouldn’t it be delightful to be able to continue spending evenings on your patio when temperatures begin to drop?

The question of providing heat on your patio boils down to fire pits vs. outdoor heaters. Each choice has advantages and disadvantages which you should carefully weigh before deciding which option is best for you.

Fire Pits

Fire pits come in all shapes and sizes and materials such as stainless steel, aluminum, bronze, copper, and granite. A fire pit table consists of a fire pit situated in the middle of a large table. Everyone sits around the table and gets the benefit of the heat given off by the fire. Gas fire pits conveniently provide instant heat and flame and are ideal for those who are too impatient to wait for a fire to reach its full intensity.

Pros and Cons of Fire Pits

One of the downsides to fire pits is that you need the pit to be large enough to accommodate an average-sized log. Another disadvantage is the chore of regularly emptying the fire pit of ash. However, if you want to bring your outdoor space to life with a beautiful piece of art for family and friends to gather around, a fire pit is the perfect accessory to your patio furniture. And, some fire pits are very portable in case you decide to rearrange your layout.

Patio Heaters

Patio heaters are designed for ease of use, safety and portability and can either be powered by gas or electricity. Gas heaters tend to be free standing and can either be connected to the home’s main gas supply or to propane gas cylinders. Electrical heaters can either be free standing or affixed to patio walls. All heaters that are not wall mounted should be equipped with a safety feature that switches the heater off if it gets toppled.

It’s not necessary to be right on top of a patio heater to stay warm as heaters are capable of heating areas of approximately two-hundred square feet.


If you are still undecided on the question of fire pits vs. outdoor heaters, ……………………………………… offers a broad range of choices. The first step you should take is to download our buying guide which will provide you with an overview of all of our stylish furniture and accessories. We can then help you find the perfect way to heat your patio.


Shades of Summer – Shade Structures vs. Patio Umbrellas – 558 Words

Most people are not fortunate enough to have a magnificent old shade tree over their patio to provide some respite from the hot summer sun. Neither is it practical to wait until the trees they have planted grow big enough to start providing some shade. So some type of artificial shade structure is necessary to make patio living enjoyable at all times of the day. Whether a patio umbrella will keep you cool or whether you need more patio cover with a shade structure will depend on your shade requirements.

The Sun is Warm but Dangerous

Whichever type of shade provider you choose, bear in mind that it’s crucial to shield your skin from the sun’s rays to prevent skin cancer. An alarming statistic – during the past thirty years, more people have been diagnosed with skin cancer than with all other cancers combined.

Patio Umbrellas

Grouped with your stylish furniture, a freestanding umbrella provides shade and can add a splash of color and zest to an outdoor space. An umbrella can be coordinated with outdoor pillows, cushions, and rugs to create the look of a stylish outdoor resort. Plus, a mobile umbrella provides you with shade wherever it’s needed as the sun moves across the sky.

Freestanding umbrellas come in two types. Either attached to a straight pole rising from a base or offset or cantilevered. If the umbrella is offset, the umbrella arm can easily be raised, lowered, and angled to get shade exactly where you need it.

When an Umbrella is Not Enough

When deciding between shade structures vs. patio umbrellas, sometimes an umbrella will not provide enough shade. A shade structure will shade a wider area than an umbrella and can enhance any outdoor space. It can create a focal point, offer a sense of height and provide massive relief from the sun. When considering any type of shade structure, it’s important to consider existing elements like trees and your house, which may already be providing quite a bit of shade at certain times of the day.

Retractable Awnings

Motorized retractable awnings are a practical addition to any patio, allowing you to make the most of your space and turning your patio into the perfect place to eat breakfast or hold an evening soiree.

An awning can be customized and tailored to fit your exact space. An extended awning can not only provide welcome shade on your patio but also prevent sun damage to furniture, drapes and flooring inside your home. And, by lowering temperatures inside your home, it can save you money on energy bills.

Power Screens

For a sleek look, consider power screens. They can provide a semi or complete enclosure, privacy, sun protection, and a barrier against pesky insects.


Fabrics for umbrellas and awnings need to offer UV protection and be durable. They also need to resist fading, mold, mildew and water and be easy to clean. Sunbrella fabrics provide unparalleled performance and are available in a variety of styles and colors.


………………………………………………. can help you make your patio livable during the hot days of summer with either an umbrella or a shade structure. Please download our buying guide which will answer many of your questions about patio furniture and then talk to us about shade structures vs. patio umbrellas so that we can provide you with your perfect shade solution.

Why is Patio Furniture So Expensive? – 462 Words

Summer and outdoor living are almost here, and anyone who is shopping for patio furniture will know about sticker price shock. You might ask why is patio furniture so expensive, but that is the wrong question. The right question is why is quality patio furniture so expensive? The answer is that items in the outdoor furniture family have to withstand one thing that their indoor cousins do not – the weather.

Cheap Patio Furniture

In 2013 outdoor furniture sales amounted to approximately 4.05 billion dollars, and in 2015 more than 80% of households planned to purchase one or more items of outdoor furniture or accessories. So, it’s certainly true that you can go to various stores and see attractive-looking patio furniture sets for only a few hundred dollars. But are they a good deal? The answer is only if you are prepared to regard them as disposable consumer items, as they will only last for a season or two. Inexpensive furniture is generally made of components that are arc welded together and given a spray coating that mimics hammered metal or verdigris bronze. They come with plastic webbing and “water resistant” cushions or mesh fabrics stretched between frames.

Cheap Usually Doesn’t Also Mean Good

Quality and longevity are the factors usually absent in cheap patio furniture. The problem is that after one or two seasons, this type of furniture starts to look ratty. The sun fades the finish, the aluminum oxidizes and bubbles up the paint, the cushions rot and mildew, straps hang down, and stretched fabric becomes bowed. Worse, the warranty period runs out and repair is not a cost-effective option.

Durable Furniture

The reason why patio furniture is so expensive is because top brands use high-quality, durable materials. The materials, finishes, and fabrics will hold up longer to mother nature than those used in more inexpensive products. The other element included in the price is the cost of the warranty associated with each piece of furniture. Most long-lasting products come with furniture warranties ranging from three to twenty years depending on the materials used. Your quality furniture display on your patio can also be enhanced by a fire pit and decorative accents.


The questions you need to ask when looking for patio furniture are: what is your budget, what configuration do you need, what region/climate do you live in? Here at …………………… we can work within your budget and still provide you with quality, long-lasting patio furniture. To get started, please download our buying guide which will answer many of your questions. Our guide includes: descriptions of all categories of patio furniture, reviews of all brands we carry, ten common questions with answers, and how to find your best buying strategy. You don’t have to sacrifice quality to get the patio furniture you can afford.