Relaxing after a long day of work, having friends over on weekends, just casually enjoying your afternoon during light rain– are just some of the uses of a patio with an umbrella.
Patio umbrellas, although amazing visual add-ons and outdoor furniture pieces for your patio, can encounter a problem of falling over or spinning, or both. That tends to happen if you hadn’t secured your patio umbrella enough for the strength of the wind it encounters.
Make sure that when the wind hits, the umbrella is closed to avoid falling which would cause damage to an umbrella, patio, and the worst case of all, someone standing or sitting nearby.
To get ahead of the situation, read further for tips on how to stop the patio umbrella from falling over and spinning.
How To Keep Your Patio Umbrella From Falling Over?
- Pick the right base
The base of the umbrella is the most important feature since it provides support for the whole umbrella. The right base of an umbrella needs to be heavy and properly secured so it can withstand the force applied by the outdoor elements.
Usually, the manufacturer of the base offers the base that complements the model of the umbrella. To get that one is often the best option, with the downside that it usually doesn’t come with the weights.
- Drill base in the patio
Some bases come with already-made holes and screws in the package. The holes that are integrated into the floor of the base are used to secure the base even more by mounting it on a deck or drilling it in the patio with the screws that had come in the package. It provides additional safety and it’s more visually appealing.
Apart from holes in the patio, another downside is that if you want to move your umbrella, you will have to unmount it. If you live in a particularly windy area, that is a small price for the safety of people around it.
- Add weights
The weights will actually keep the whole structure in place. Just as the base, the manufacturer might recommend weights and provide information about the minimum weight needed for your umbrella. If the area where you keep the umbrella is particularly windy, you can always play it safe and opt for a little more weight, just in case.
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For every additional foot make sure that you add at least 10 lbs. The chart shows a minimum weight that should be added to the base. If you have doubts about the quantity of the weights, you can test your umbrella in slightly windy conditions and make your assessment of whether you should add more than the required minimum. One thing is for sure – it can’t hurt to add more.
- Keep your umbrella closed
Most of the umbrella instructions give notice about keeping your umbrella closed when it’s windy. It’s best if you close it during the night to avoid surprises in the morning. Also, make sure to follow those instructions and your weather forecast.
The instructions usually note the wind speed that the patio umbrella is able to bear so if you still haven’t bought one, take a look at the wind statistics of your place and buy the umbrella accordingly.
Make sure that you use the strap to ensure that your umbrella stays closed during the windy weather. If the wind is strong enough and the umbrella is not secured all the way, doesn’t have screws that are tightened enough, or some similar problems, the umbrella might open and fall over anyway.
- Opt for sturdy frame
The stronger the frame, the less leaning and moving the patio umbrella will encounter. The strong frame is usually made out of aluminum or steel.
When looking for a stronger structure, opt for ribs that are strengthened with fiberglass. Usually, the umbrella structure and pole will be made out of aluminum if there is a need for it to be moved around frequently. If not, the steel one is better, and also a heavier option that provides the umbrella with extra stability since the steel weights more than aluminum.
Look for a frame that is painted with a coat to avoid rusting and cleaning issues that can shorten a lifespan and quality of an umbrella.
- Avoid plastic joints
Not only do they last less, but the plastic joints of a patio are also more prone to deformations in less standard weather conditions such as high temperatures, a very rainy area, and strong winds.
The deformation of a joint may lead to the deformation of a whole structure further disrupting the mechanics and gravity center of a patio leading to the structure that can fall more easily.
- Get the table
Having a table on a patio is a good option by itself. It allows you to have dinners, to have a place to put your coffee in the morning or the vase with the flowers, have BBQ and other social gatherings. Apart from that, the tables that have a hole in the middle to put the patio umbrella through it is a good option if you want to increase functionality while incorporating another safety measure.
If the table is heavy and durable it provides additional support for your umbrella during the windy days.
- Get an umbrella with air vents
Air vents are made to ensure that the air can circulate through the umbrella. Make sure that your umbrella has them.
The usual patio umbrella has a single went and sometimes it can have double. If you think that wind might cause you and your umbrella problems in the future, opt for the double went to ensure maximized air circulation which leads to better stability of a whole structure in stormy weather.
How To Keep A Patio Umbrella From Spinning?
Another inconvenience that you may encounter while having a peaceful outdoor time is that your umbrella might start spinning. Here are some tips on how to solve this problem:
- Get the appropriate base
If you are using the base that isn’t the same shape as a pole or has a wider diameter, consider getting another, perhaps a complimentary one that will fit better.
- Tighten the knob
The knob might be on an umbrella stand has the purpose of fixing the pole in the place so that it doesn’t fall over and spin. If this knob isn’t tightened enough, it might cause the umbrella to spin. If you opt for fixing it yourself, make sure that you get the necessary tools that will allow you to strengthen the knob enough, or at least more than you would if you had tightened it freehand.
Since this is the main reason for the umbrellas spinning, be sure to check the state of the knob first. If it still spins after tightening it, try the insert a through-bolt method.
- Insert a through-bolt
The through-bolt might be a good solution if tightening the knob doesn’t work because it is removable, easy to install and it’s a cheap solution.
Firstly, measure the diameter of the pole and buy the screw of the appropriate dimension and appropriate type. Next, you drill a hole in the base of an umbrella and the pole at the same time – that means that you should drill through the base and the pole while they are together if you want the holes to align perfectly, or if you want to do it separately then you need to get the additional measurement. Have another person help you while you are doing it by holding the pole in place while you do the drilling.
After you drill the hole, put the screw through it and close it from the other side by other parts of the screw (depending on the type of screw that you got). That should stop the umbrella from spinning.
- Install an umbrella ring
This simple method will make your life easier. It’s easy to incorporate into daily life and it’s not a big investment. The umbrella ring should be placed in the hole in the table. It’s made out of silicone so it will not damage the table or the umbrella. It’s also transparent and will not violate the patio aesthetics.
The spinning and falling of a patio umbrella shouldn’t be a frequent event in one’s life. The patio space should be a safe place for relaxation, social occasions, and overall a place where you go when you want to enjoy and have a good, quality time.
The inconveniences like spinning and falling over can violate your experience and therefore should be dealt with as soon as possible. If you are having more problems related to the patio furniture or space, consult okpatio.com for more tips and tricks on how to enhance your outdoor time.
Henry Jurk is an experienced architect with over 20 years of expertise in paving. He shares his knowledge and provides solutions through his blog posts at OkPatio.com. If you have any questions about patios, gardens, and outdoor spaces, you can find the correct answers from Henry. You can contact him via email at email@example.com or through the website’s contact page.