6 Best Patio Awning Ideas to Upgrade Your Shade

Updated: Apr. 15, 2024

Stay dry in the rain or cool in the shade with these patio awning ideas.

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6 Best Patio Awning Ideas To Upgrade Your ShadeVIA MERCHANT

Tired of canceling outdoor plans because of the weather? Consider adding a patio awning to your outdoor living space. Whether hot or rainy, an awning ensures your cookout continues uninterrupted. Plus, an awning can add outdoor privacy and prevent the sun from baking the inside of your house. Less heat from the sun means less work for your air conditioner and lower energy bills. Sounds like a win to us!

Need a little inspiration? Check out these six patio awning ideas to get the creative juices flowing.

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Retractable Patio Awning
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Best Retractable Patio Awning

Outsunny Exterior Manual Window Awning

If you’re looking for a little extra shade without adding a fixed structure to your home, try a roll-out patio awning (otherwise known as a retractable awning). They’re usually made of flexible materials such as canvas, cotton, polyester or vinyl that can be rolled up and stored.

This specific roll-out patio awning mounts to a wall and extends over an outdoor living space to provide shade, shelter and privacy. Some roll-out awnings are manually operated with a hand crank, while others use a motor with a switch or remote. The advantage of manual operation? It doesn’t require electricity. Oh, and while you’re at it, check out these front door awning ideas to add instant curb appeal, too.

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Pergola Patio Awning
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Best Pergola Patio Awning

Sunjoy Meadoe Metal Pergola with Canopy

Adding an awning to a pergola provides shade and privacy, unlike a standard pergola. Some pergola awnings are tied to the supports, while others are retractable, usually manually, using carabineers and a wire cable. Adding an awning to your existing pergola, or purchasing a pergola with an awning, will make your patio even more usable.

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Sun Shade Patio Awning
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Best Sun Shade Patio Awning

LOVE STORY Triangle Sun Shade

If you’re looking for an affordable way to stay out of the sun, consider a sun shade awning. They are easy to install and low-cost because of their simplicity.

Made from a mesh-like fabric that allows water to pass through, this thin, breathable awning features metal D-rings that hooks easily to new or existing support beams. This makes them a breeze to install and easy to take down if strong winds are expected. Extend a sun shade awning over your patio, pool, kid’s play area or driveway to make the outdoors more enjoyable.

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Motorized Patio Awning
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Best Motorized Patio Awning

Awntech Destin Motorized Retractable Awning

Transform your space with a motorized patio awning. Many come assembled, so all you do is install it on your wall, soffit or roof (or have a pro do it for you). These retract with the click of a remote control.

These awnings are usually made with mold- and mildew-resistant acrylic fabric, plus strong commercial-grade aluminum or steel frames that can withstand wind. While these awnings are pricey, they make a space more usable, comfortable and luxurious.

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Fixed Patio Awning
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Best Fixed Patio Awning

Palram Feria Patio Cover

If you like the idea of a rigid roof-like awning overhead, take a look at a solid, fixed patio awning. One with a clear polycarbonate roof panel, like the one shown here, provides UV protection while allowing 65% of the light to shine through.

This option is also designed for DIY installation. It’s backed by a 10-year limited warranty and U.S.-based customer support.

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Portable Patio Awning
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Best Portable Patio Awning

ABCCANOPY Patio Pop Up Canopy Tent

A pop-up tent may not be what you picture when you think of a patio awning, but it offers many of the same benefits.

Unlike awnings that need to be mounted to a wall or fixed to a frame, a pop-up tent is easy to move and significantly less expensive. It provides shade and protection from rain or sun whether you’re taking on a family camping trip or tailgating with friends. This portable canopy sets up in seconds and collapses into a manageable roller bag that’s easy to take anywhere. Additionally, you can choose from a variety of colors and sizes to best suit your individual needs.

What to Consider When Buying a Patio Awning

When shopping for a patio awning, consider size, weather conditions, material and personal style. Awnings can be stationary or retractable, so determine which option works best for your situation.

  • Size: The size of your patio will help you determine what side awning you need. Think about how much of the patio you want to be covered. Focus on shading the areas that get the most sun or that you use the most often, such as the area with a table or seating.
  • Weather conditions: Depending on where you live, you should look for patio awnings that withstand UV rays, wind, rain or extreme heat. Weather-resistant materials will ensure the longevity of your awning.
  • Style: Make sure to select an awning that fits in with your home’s style and architectural design. When you find the right one, it can really elevate your outdoor space.
  • Material: Patio awnings can be made from polyester, canvas, metal and more. Consider what will work best in your climate, with your style and the required maintenance or upkeep.

Why You Should Trust Us

I’m a commerce writer for a few different lifestyle sites and the owner of a copywriting studio. I am an avid DIYer and love to share my budget-friendly home improvement hacks with my social media and blog audience. I have written several stories about outdoor products and used that knowledge when curating this list of patio awnings.

How We Found the Best Patio Awnings

When selecting the patio awnings, we began by researching a wide range of available options, considering factors such as size, material, design and price point. We also looked for awnings that catered to specific patios, including portable, fixed and motorized, ensuring a diverse selection that could accommodate various outdoor spaces. Finally, to narrow down our choices, we analyzed customer reviews to understand each patio awning’s real-world performance and durability.


What is the most durable awning?

This will depend on the quality and material of the awning you buy. Most are durable since they are meant to be used outdoors. Stronger materials, such as metal (or awnings with metal frames) tend to be the most durable.

Is a fixed or movable awning better?

Whether to get a fixed or movable/portable awning really comes down to personal preference. Fixed awnings provide permanent shade in a specific area, are more durable and require minimal maintenance. However, they can’t be adjusted or moved easily. Movable awnings are more versatile and can be moved as the sun moves or to protect/shade a specific part of your patio. They do require a little more maintenance though.

How many years should an awning last?

If you purchase a high-quality awning, it should last you anywhere from 10 to 20 years. To increase its lifespan, ensure proper installation, clean it regularly and attend to maintenance requirements when needed.