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How do we design the perfect covered deck? A look at 4 of the most-loved deck roof ideas

Who doesn’t love to spend time outdoors from the comfort of your own home? With more of our time spent at home, having a sense or relief from the indoors is a luxury. By connecting ourselves with the outside, it allows us a moment to refresh, revitalise and breathe from everyday life.

Having an outdoor area; whether it be a backyard, patio or a large covered deck is the perfect way to design an interior-exterior connection within the house. For city dwellers, the dense urban landscape lends itself to a variety of outdoor rooftop areas and balconies. For those with a bit more space, a backyard and patio combination provides an ideal setting for relaxing, entertaining and enjoying the outdoors at home.

Nature plays a big role in the Australian lifestyle and as we enter the cooler months, it’s a great time to make use of that outdoor deck to bring a sense of relief from that cabin fever. To keep you protected from the weather, having a covered deck is the best solution. There is an extensive list of deck cover options available such as a Pergola, Rectractable Awnings, Gazebo Cover and Louvered Systems to name a few. Each provide a range of cost-effective options to suit your budget. With a plethora of deck roof materials and solutions available it is relatively easy to completely replace an existing deck roof or change the feel and function of your outdoor space. 

Photography credits to LivvyLand.

Choosing the right materials is crucial when looking through deck roof ideas. Depending on the climate you live in or the type of lifestyle you live are some factors that play a big role. If you want to keep the price on the cheap side, hiring professionals to design plans and set up the most efficient patio cover can guarantee you a job done correctly rather than covering the cost of re-doing it in case anything goes wrong.

The process of designing, selecting and building or installing can take time so to help, here are four best deck roof ideas to give you inspiration and bring comfort to your outdoor space.

1 Pergola

Photography credits to Pinterest.

The traditional pergola consists of timber posts, beams and rafters supporting a flat roof structure. The natural material makes it the perfect pairing for a timber outdoor deck. Building a pergola can be as easy as a DIY project if you follow the steps carefully, otherwise hiring someone to do it can be just as cost-effective. On average, building a pergola can cost around the $3,000-3,500 mark depending how you do it.

Pros
This deck roof idea is cost-effective, easy to DIY and adds a rustic charm to your home. You can choose to add a polycarbonate roof to the top of the pergola, providing shade and shelter on the rainy days as well as keeping it cool in the warmer season. The rectilinear structure of this covered deck provides a canvas for you to personalize and create your perfect outdoor living area. You can decorate it with hanging lights on the beams, adding additional fabric to make for a more insulated space or add greenery to the posts.

Photography credits to Pinterest.

Cons
As it uses an earthy material, your outdoor pergola will naturally age by changing colour and shade, meaning you will have to do regular maintenance on the structure depending on the climate that you’re in. Although timber has a high durability to it, some timber species are higher than others and some require more care than others – otherwise a metal – such as a steel pergola – will suit you better if you want something that needs a bit less attention.

Completely versatile and open-air, this pergola will make you feel right at home.

Photography credits to Dwell.

To purchase or install a Pergola or materials in Australia, they’re available at: 
Bunnings, Aarons Outdoor, Vogue Pergolas

2 Rectractable Awnings

Photography credits to Pinterest.

Usually retractable awnings are at the lower end of the price scale, depending on the size that you get. Standard sizes of widths up to 1500mm and a depth of 1m can be purchased for $300 or less and can be installed yourself. The bigger you go, the more expensive it will be but any awning that is manually operated will usually cost less than $1000. On the other end of the price scale, a custom-sized motorized awning can cost a few thousand dollars, which would require some professional installation and an electrician to ensure than the motor is functional and efficiently put in place

The most common awning materiality spans across vinyl, acrylic and acrylic-coated synthetic fabrics.

Photography credits to AlunoTec.

Pros
The initial cost to purchase and install the awning is cost-efficient for its purpose and the skill-level required for a DIY installation is relatively low. It creates a comfortable outdoor environment gives you the choice to provide shade, block sunlight or retract the deck cover and control how much sun you receive. This deck cover is also designed for longevity. Compared to a fixed awning, the retractable feature makes it extremely durable, protecting it from harsh weather conditions as well as having less exposure to the it’s aging and colour-fading against sun exposure.

Cons
Motorized retractable awnings can be more expensive the bigger you go, especially if you choose to have the system professionally-installed. Cleaning and maintenance can also be tedious, as all type of awnings are vulnerable to collecting dust, dirt, a bit of waterlog throughout the seasons.

Awnings are an ideal deck roof purchase for controlled shade, weather-protection and relaxing in style.

Photography credits to authenTEAK.

To purchase or install Rectractable Awnings or materials in Australia, they’re available at: 
Designer Blinds And Shutters, Shutters Australia, Shade Factor, Eurola, AlunoTec

3 Gazebo Roof

Photography credits to Sam’s Club.

Some houses have an outdoor backyard large enough for a gazebo setting. More secluded than a pergola, the roof of a gazebo can be in a rectangular, square, circular shape, hexagonal, octagonal or any form that pairs well with the overall gazebo building. The material of its overhead structure should complement the style of your home, whether it be a steel or a beautiful timber roof to match your hardwood tongue and groove gazebo flooring – choose the right material that suits your lifestyle.

A custom-built gazebo roof installed by professionals can range between $1,000 to $3,000 or more depending on the size and material. However, you’re able to build your own or simply install your own cover by buying a full roof kit, a prefabricated structure or materials to do yourself, which will cost you about $600 to $900 or slightly more.

Photography credits to Sheds.

Pros
Gazebo roofs are structurally built to withstand any harsh climate, as it is a more permanent fixture and situated in an outdoor environment at all times. As a covered deck, it is durable and supported by posts to create a more exclusive and sheltered area within your backyard. There’s also a lot more options regarding shape and height as its own freestanding backyard structure. Depending on how you install, build and which size you choose for your gazebo coverage, the price can be kept relatively low within your budget.                                                                                     

Cons
However, custom-built gazebo roof options can be very costly, especially if you choose to get a builder to professionally set it up and make sure that everything is built to withstand the elements. If unprecedented weather conditions become too extreme, gazebo deck roofs repair costs can be quite expensive as well.

Photography credits to Kauffman Lawn Furniture.

To purchase or install a Gazebo Roof or materials in Australia, they’re available at: 
Gazebo Pergola, Gazebos

4 Louvered Roof System

Photography credits to The Art Of Living.

Opening roofs are an extension of the home – it serves as an additional living space for more room to socialise, dine alfresco and relax with just a step outside. Similar in form to a pergola, the louvered roof system – or also known as vergola in Australia – is perfect if you’re looking for a more elegant and modern structure with a high-tech operating system.

This architecturally designed system comes in a variety of design options to suit your style and home requirements usually built in aluminium or steel to withstand the weather and house the operating system. These have to be professionally installed, which lends itself towards the higher end of the price scale and ranges in the thousands, however it is a great investment to any lifestyle.

Photography credits to ShadeFLA.

Pros
Its motorized system allowed you to have complete light control and weather protection. You can easily adjust your settings to allow as much light, shade and airflow through this deck roofing system to make you as comfortable as possible. The structure is also designed to withstand normal levels of rain and wind, but when heavier climate conditions occur, further protection can be added to protect the deck underneath completely. This professionally-installed systems are usually customizable to support your lifestyle, making it an attractive choice when designing your outdoor deck area. Perfect for any residential, commercial or industrial environment, it is extremely versatile, functional with superior durability. 

Cons
It is very costly compared to some of the other deck roof ideas. Especially with its motorized system, a professional is required to make sure that everything is installed properly, everything is working efficiently and that the drainage systems are working to provide you with the best experience as possible. Depending on the size that you get, it will require a large budget but for a great long-term investment for the home.

A louvered roof system opens up the house to an indoor-outdoor flow in a very sophisticated, contemporary aesthetic.

Photography credits to Vergola.

To purchase or install a Louvered Roof System or materials in Australia, they’re available at: 
Vergola, Louvretec, Vergola NSW, Skymax, Opening Roof Specialists

Your outdoor patio, deck or gazebo deserves the best coverage and whether you choose to install or build it yourself or have it professionally done, make sure that it suits your lifestyle the best. As we spend more time at home, having a beautifully designed and styled outdoor area can enhance and inspire our everyday living.

Photography credits to Sarah Sherman Samuel.

Header image source: Serena&Lily, ElMueble

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