Different Types of Outdoor Pergola Roof Materials

Updated on April 25, 2019

Outdoor pergolas are structures that can be used to cover a patio, garden, or deck area in your backyard. A pergola is used to cover an area but still leave it exposed to the elements and nature. Many homeowners fall in love with the beauty of pergola structures, but they later find out that they would like something a little more protected from the outdoor conditions.

Common roofing materials such as metal, fiberglass, plastic, and fabric are all great solutions to gaining an additional layer of protection from Mother Nature for pergola lovers. The size, style, and shape of your pergola can be standard or unique. Most roofing materials can be easily adjusted or cut to size to fit all pergola structures and designs.

Photo by chrisbeach520 @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/31325882@N08/
Photo by chrisbeach520 @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/31325882@N08/

Highly Durable Metal Pergola Roof

Metal pergola roof materials are considered to be the most durable, thus they are also more permanent than many of the other types roofing materials. The best thing about metal roofing material is that it can be cut down or sized to fit any size or shape structure. There are two basic types of tin roofing material to choose from.

R-panel has ridges that are high and require 5/16” lap screws for install. V-crimp is much simpler to install because it does not need lap screws. Copper and aluminum sheets are similar to install and will make a beautiful impact on your existing pergola. Steel is, of course, more expensive, but it is also very durable and sturdy. A tin or aluminum pergola cover is also quite a beautiful site and very soothing at times. There is something wonderful about the sound of rain falling on a metal rooftop. There is also nothing more enjoyable than sitting in your back yard pergola regardless of the weather condition.

Fiberglass and Plastic Pergola Tops

Fiberglass and plastic pergola roofs are durable materials that are fairly inexpensive to purchase and more permanent in comparison to other types. Both materials are designed to allow complete light exposure but do a great job keeping rain and harmful UV rays from passing through.

Plastic usually comes in lightweight panels of different sizes that can easily be cut down to size if needed. Fiberglass may be a little bit harder to find but it is also a very green alternative. Most fiberglass materials are made by using recycled materials, which helps reduce the amount of waste on our planet.

Fabric Deck Pergola Covers

Fabric deck pergola covers are another more complete way to cover your structure. There are many different types of outdoor fabric covers to choose from. Some offer UV protection, which will help extend the life of your outdoor furniture and cut down on the heat and light that penetrates through your pergola roof.

Many fabrics are colorful or have an interesting design to add even more style to your outdoor structure. Fabric shades and sails are similar and can easily be installed to any structure. Sails are going to be more durable because they are made of materials that are resistant to sun exposure, moisture, and the elements.

Outdoor pergola roof materials can easily be purchased online via the many manufacturers and distributors of such products. Some websites offer comparisons between the different materials they carry. Finding a material that is both durable and beautiful is fairly easy. A clear material like plastic or fiberglass is a great solution for homeowners that do not want to distract from the beauty of their wooden pergolas.

Some materials can easily be changed out if you get tired of the look or wish to change out the color. Others are more difficult to remove once they are installed. The level of permanency is entirely up to you because most materials are very effective for many years of use.

Photo by keithcaley @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/keithcaley/
Photo by keithcaley @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/keithcaley/


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    • profile image


      15 months ago

      I live in Indiana which type of plastic clear roof you recommend?

    • profile image

      Patrick Giordano 

      2 years ago

      Madison we live in South Fla and was wondering which type of store would have the best selection of Pergala cover materials, i.e.,, metal, plastic, etc? Our Lowes strore only has the corrugated vinyl or plastic sheets.


    • profile image


      5 years ago

      M & D Adams, August 10, 2012 at 4:51 pm We stayed at the Lemon Tree for three nithgs in June. Great fun in a traditional room but the visit was made memorable by the food. Mark can invent a new dish for you on the spot. If anyone is going near Handras suggest you hurry as it's the last chance for this food. Mark and Anita are returning to the UK at the end of this season as the children are now school age. We predict that in future his cooking will be a lot more exclusive and expensive!M & D Adams. Stamford UK

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      he was open. The food was great and our four kids loved the place, the small ones played in te croutyard while waiting and the two elder ones said they had their best diner of the vacation. For ones they were right, the food was more then delicious and Marc turned out the be a great chap and fan of John Martin as well! We went back, because we wanted to have the second best diner of our vacation. Thanks a lot Marc! See you next time.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Петросян призывает не допускать пролива и протечек соплива, открытого выделения паров этого же соплива. Для подогрева целователя и системы питания, устранения ледяных хохотаний и пробок разрешается применять только горячий воздух, горячую воду или пар.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      We used to get high on lifestyle yet of late We've built up a level of resistance.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Боковые поддисплейные клавиши выполняют наиболее насущные функции. Это доступ к меню и записной книге. Спорным кажется расположение клавиши активации внутренней связи «Intercom». Эта функция не относится к ежедневно используемым. На джойстик вынесена возможность просмотра списка последних набранных и определившихся номеров, регулировка громкости динамика и перемещение по меню. Круговые клавиши отвечают за открытие/закрытие линии, активацию громкой связи и работу с Flash.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      yous ok gary i shouldn't give it out but this is the site and details ,ring them if you need them urgently ,just say davy fetonsey

      give you there number

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      you ok macaulay if your still in need of them here is the web address

      filling address , there very helpful ,say martells put you on

    • TulsaWoodscapes profile image


      9 years ago

      Great article! We prefer to use polycarbonate panels for our pergola roofs but sometimes have customers who prefer metal.

    • profile image

      Albama Roofing Company 

      9 years ago

      These Pergola roofs are so nice..I would love to have them for my house.

    • shanel profile image


      10 years ago from Seattle

      Great Hub. I love the idea of using clear plastic to keep from detracting from the beauty of the pergola.


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