Gazebos are a beautiful addition to any garden and can be a majestic and serene place to relax since they provide protection from the sun and the wind.
Gazebo manufacturers put in a lot to make sure that they are durable but exposure to the elements can make them susceptible to damage. If you want your gazebo to last longer, you need to take a few steps to preserve and maintain it.
Here are 10 tips to make your gazebo last longer. While the majority of our advice is for permanent gazebo structures, some of these still apply to popup gazebos with sides.
Mother Nature can sometimes be ruthless and you need to know how to prepare for unforeseen events if you want your gazebo to last longer. There are many things you can do and one of them is to clear the path around your gazebo.
For ideal results, we recommend you leave at least 3-10 feet of the width of the gazebo. Just pull or dig out any unwanted plants including vines, brambles and common weeds such as crab glass which can cause damage to your gazebo. Other benefits here are that it will add extra beauty to your gazebo and protect your family from getting poisoned by harmful plants.
Many gazebo owners complain of the growth of mould and mildew and it can reduce the lifespan of your gazebo. To prevent this, you need to clean it regularly by making a mixture using ½ cup of household bleach, ¼ cup of liquid laundry detergent and 1 gallon of hot water.
After you’ve made the mixture, use a sponge or rag to apply the mixture on the gazebo and then leave it to soak for at least ten minutes. Then wipe down all the surfaces to remove all stains as well as signs of mould and mildew, and when you’re done, rinse the surfaces with water. Just make sure you don’t use chemical cleaners as they tend to damage the gazebo.
One of the first places that tend to get damaged is the roof of the gazebo due to the effects of a strong storm or severe wind. If you spot any damaged areas during the inspection, replace them immediately.
Examples of things that could go wrong with the roof are damaged shingles and gutters as they can lead to further damage if they’re not quickly attended to. Also, make sure the drainpipes are far away from the building as much as possible to prevent possible cases of erosion. The roof of your gazebo is your first line of defence and it’s critical to inspect them regularly.
Like every other structure, your gazebo needs to be taken care of regularly if you want it to last long. If you don’t want it breaking apart which might set you hundreds of dollar back, you need to undertake preventative maintenance from time to time.
The ideal duration for preventative maintenance here should be at least a month so you can check for signs, splits and other possible issues. For instance, check the joints and tighten anyone that might be getting loose. Drive-in nail heads that are making their way out and replace any part that’s coming apart. If you see chipped or broken wood, get it out and fix the area as soon as possible.
If your gazebo comes painted, you will need to repaint it every 3-5 years to keep it in good shape and prevent it from rusting. However, before you start repainting the unit, check for cracks and holes and fill them with painter’s caulk. While you’re at it, cover the areas you don’t want to paint with a rag and also the plants in the area.
There are a wide range of materials you can use to paint such as rollers, sprays and brushes. If you’re unsure about the choice of paint to use, consider using latex.
A common reason why gazebos get damaged is due to wind storms which increase the risk of your unit doing the breakdance with the wind. There are several ways to secure your gazebo such as using gazebo weights, threaded iron and anchoring kits.
You can tell the method that’s ideal for you by examining the kind of ground you will be placing it in. For instance, threaded rods are ideal for patio and other paved areas while concrete footers are suitable for open areas and soils.
Whatever material your gazebo is made of, you need to check the interior and exterior of your gazebo frequently for insects and birds infestation. For example, termites can cause irreparable damage if ignored, so check for insects, birds and wasp nests.
For these, you will need to be careful with how you remove them and the best way is by occasionally spraying insecticides and pesticides. Dealing with birds and insects will help maintain your gazebo’s structural integrity.
Regular re-treatment is one of the tips that cannot be overemphasised when it comes to making your gazebo last longer. Most gazebo owners recommend at least an annual re-treatment to keep your gazebo in good shape. However, before you do this, make sure you’ve removed all mildew, mould, cobwebs, dirt and other accumulated debris.
This tip is especially helpful if you own a wooden gazebo and want to keep it looking new. Periodically wash the entire gazebo with warm water, mild soap or eco-friendly detergent and a soft scrub brush. Scrub the railings, posts and floor to remove dirt that could stain or scratch the gazebo.
Pressure washers are a bad idea for wooden gazebos as the high-powered water stream can remove the pain, creating a need for a new painting and waterproof sealant. That’s not all; the water from a pressure washer can also loosen the wood’s top layer which shortens the gazebo’s lifespan.
Buying a gazebo will cost you money but keeping it in good shape requires an investment of time and effort. The tips above can make your gazebo last longer and save you the cost of buying another unit again.
Jamie is the Editor of Windproof Gazebos. Born into a family of Landscape Architects, he has been designing gardens professionally for 5 years. As time marches forward, and as the world changes, he finds comfort in making his own garden look better and helping others along this journey.