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Blog Post

A Guide to Pergola Roofing: Polycarbonate Roofs Vs. Insulated Panel Roofs

April 27, 2024

Homeowners today recognise the importance of outdoor living spaces. They want to make the most of their space and often invest in pergolas to achieve this goal.

When doing so, they need to ensure the structure will protect them from the weather.

The pergola's roof plays a large role in ensuring the structure provides this protection. However, the right roofing material must be selected.

Why is the Roofing Material So Important?

Before choosing a roofing material, the property owner must understand why this choice is critical. The right material allows occupants to get the most from the pergola.

If the roof helps keep the structure at a comfortable temperature, they spend more time outdoors.

Furthermore, the right roof will require little maintenance. Nobody wants to spend their time maintaining the pergola’s roof when they could be enjoying the structure.

Our pergola builders in Canberra often recommend polycarbonate roofs or insulated roof panels.

What benefits and drawbacks come with each option?

Polycarbonate Roofs

Polycarbonate is a durable material that handles stress easily. It won’t crack or break under pressure, and the thermoplastic material is lightweight. Installing a polycarbonate roof requires less labor.

Extreme temperatures won’t harm the material, making this the ideal choice for many pergolas in Canberra.

Anyone living in Australia knows how unpredictable the weather can be. Polycarbonate roofs hold up well regardless of what Mother Nature chooses to bring.

The panels are UV and heat-resistant, so the pergola remains cool when temperatures climb. The sun won’t harm the panels, so the roof lasts longer.

Owners enjoy the glass-like appearance of polycarbonate panels because they allow natural light to enter the area while minimising glare.

The owner won’t need to install as much artificial light to illuminate the pergola’s interior.

However, don’t overlook foam-backed options, either. They help insulate the structure to keep it at a comfortable temperature. Consult a pergola roofing specialist to determine the best option for the structure.

One drawback to polycarbonate is the high price tag. Homeowners find it is one of the more expensive roofing options.

Nevertheless, they get a good return on their investment, as the roof has an extended lifespan. They won’t need to replace it as often, saving them money in the long run.

Polycarbonate roofs also require little maintenance. Clean them regularly with warm, soapy water and inspect them for damage and debris.

Other than those two tasks, property owners have little to do to keep the roof looking great while providing the desired protection.

Insulated Panel Roofing

Canberra pergola builders might offer insulated panel roofing as an alternative to polycarbonate. Homeowners love the attractive finish of this material and its construction.

Each panel has a roofing sheet, a polystyrene core that provides the insulation, and the ceiling. The completed roof resembles one seen in the home’s interior rather than a skeleton structure.

Thanks to this insulation, the pergola’s interior stays cooler during the summer months and warmer in the winter. The panels are lightweight, making them easy to install. Simply lift and lock the panels into place.

When they are locked, the roof is seamless, so water intrusion is less of a concern. However, how do insulated roof panels stack up against polycarbonate?

Insulated roof panels are similar to polycarbonate in several ways. They are durable and hold up in extreme weather. When homeowners choose this roofing material, they find they get more use out of the pergola.

As the name suggests, the panels provide heat and sound insulation while requiring little maintenance. Choose from a wide range of colours to complement other structure elements.

The roof panels are long spans, reducing the pergola’s framing requirements. The interior feels more open and uncluttered, making entertaining easy in the pergola. People won’t feel crowded.

In addition, this design allows for high patios and low pitches. Property owners find they have more options when they choose this roofing material.

Insulated roof panels require little maintenance. The homeowner won’t need to plaster or paint the panels. Inspect them for damage routinely and call for repairs immediately if problems arise.

Doing so helps to ensure the structural integrity of the panels while ensuring the pergola is ready for use at any time.

It may be challenging to choose between insulated roof panels and polycarbonate. Each option is aesthetically pleasing; both materials insulate the structure while protecting the occupants.

Ultimately, the homeowner must decide which roof they prefer. Canberra pergola builders can help them make this choice.

Regardless of the homeowner's selection, the roof will provide protection from the elements. The structure gets more use, maximising the return on investment.

Whether a person is building a new pergola or replacing the roof on an existing one, Elevated Concepts can help you compare the options to determine which one fits their lifestyle while remaining within their budget. We are happy to help owners make this selection.

Give us a call or contact us today for your next pergola!