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Question DetailsAsked on 7/9/2013

can a 'slat' patio cover be converted to a solid cover?

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1 Answer


Generally not easily - the "slat" or pergola type is not designed to carry any weight other than the slats themselves and maybe a bit of planter or climbing vegetation load - whereas a solid roof means higher wind loading and probably snow loads as well as the weight of the solid cover, so it would have to be built a lot heavier. Also, most pergolas are built level, so it would have to be sloped to shed water.

If you are in an area without any snow, then a light cover of sheet aluminum or acrylic could probably be done with some sway and uplift reinforcement for wind loading, though if you are in a snow-free area you may be in hurricane country, so aluminum and acrylic roof survivability is poor in that environment unless you design it modular (which I have done on a few jobs) so it can be unbolted with just a few bolts and slid off in panels that can be stored in the garage.

Be sure you are not making a situation where you will trap roof runoff and debris against the house or roof edge, as it will cause rot. The best design is a clear 3"+ gap vertical between house roof and pergola roof, with full-coverage splash protection (metal or plastic fascia) on the fascia across the ends of the house rafters, and a 1"+ air gap between pergola and house fascia except for where metal sway bracing connects to the house.

I would talk to a pergola/awning/porch specialty contractor or general contractor about what your existing one can take, and how much it will cost for upgrading it and roofing it. Search the List (in green banner bar) for local contractors and reviews.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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