When determining what to put in your landscape, it pays to know how much work you are undertaking when you commit to adding something. Pergolas are no different. While they can add beauty and character to your yard, you might be wondering how difficult it is to maintain them. Our readers had some tips on extending the life of your pergola and how difficult it can be. Keep reading to see what they had to say.

Aaditya Bhatta

Aaditya Bhatta

Bhatta, Editor, and Founder of Plantscraze.

Apply a Polycarbonate Top

While it varies with the type of wood, pergolas require cleansing, treating, and repainting as time passes to maintain their glamour. A pergola can easily be damaged by mildew if it’s ignored, which is why you should clean it as soon as you see any signs.

Applying a polycarbonate top can help a lot in keeping pergolas long-lasting. The polycarbonate canopy of your pergola will block both UVA and UVB rays so that it and the outdoor furniture it supports are protected from sun damage. It is necessary to apply an oil-based stain to the pergola’s legs and the parts sticking out from the frame every three to five years.

Whatever the material of your pergola, you should always wash it down before staining. It is not ideal to use a pressure washer as it can harm the softwood fibers and leave streaks.

It is essential to get rid of any mildew stains from the pergola to extend its life. To accomplish this, mix one cup of bleach with a quart of water and gently scrub the mixture into the stain with an old cloth or a brush.

Regularly Sand and Seal It

It all depends on the kind of wood used. Pergolas have to be maintained, cleaned, and repainted after a while. If you live in a humid climate, it is important to keep an eye for signs of mildew. If left untreated, mildew can cause damage to your pergola, and that’s why you’ll need to apply bleach in combination with water when you spot any indications of mildew.

Wood also needs to be cleaned up. It is common for columns to be smashed or scratched up in time. It is possible to fill in holes or scratches with metal putty or wood. Also, keep an eye out for paint and wood pieces that are peeling away (especially around children). Sanding down columns at intervals will help protect you from any (minor) injury.

Applying a lovely layer of an impervious sealer or a transparent varnish that increases the resistance to weather extremes. Wood that is aging tends to develop an appearance similar to rust deposits that are prevented by applying a sealing agent at regular intervals. This will not only bring back the attractiveness of your deck, but also coating it with a sealant can prevent the possibility of damage such as cracks, warps, or warps as well.

It is interesting to note that the market for sealants is filled with a wide range of choices, so it’s best to consult a professional regarding products that are specifically designed to meet your conditions and needs.

Akshay Chaudhary

Akshay Chaudhary

Akshay Chaudhary is a Co-Founder and Senior Editor at Smartworths.

Bill Samuel

Bill Samuel

Bill Samuel is a full-time residential real estate developer at Blue Ladder Development.

Invest in High-quality Stain Products

I prefer to stain exterior wood since it generally tends to hold up better against the elements than painting. I’d recommend investing in a quality stain product that has proven to hold up longer over time. Be sure to pay attention to the details when you are purchasing your stain and check the specifications of each product to ensure they will provide the best protection against UV damage. Understand that the highest quality stains will only last a few years at best.

If you are set on painting your pergola, then you will have to prime it if the wood has never been painted before. However if the wood has been previously painted, then you will only have to spot prime the areas where bare wood is showing.

This is a crowdsourced article. Contributors' statements do not necessarily reflect the opinion of this website, other people, businesses, or other contributors.


  • Nate Barrett

    As the President of SRI Decks, my greatest satisfaction comes from the immediate sense of fulfillment that our work brings. From the initial design discussions with our customers to the moment we capture the final project in photos, I feel an immense pride in my team for their dedicated efforts. My passion for hands-on work and outdoor projects is matched only by the joy I derive from seeing a delighted customer when we’ve successfully completed a job. Fun Facts: I like hot chocolate in my coffee. I’ve been with SRI for 12 years, prior to ownership. I have a daughter, 3 dogs and a loving girlfriend.

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