Metal vs Aluminum Pergola, Are They The Same?

aluminum pergola in backyard

If you are searching for an aluminum pergola, you likely have a sunny backyard. Whether trying to entertain guests or just read a book, direct sunlight can be uncomfortable for long periods of time. Enter pergolas, the perfect solution for managing sunlight while enjoying your backyard.

Pergola Design Options

When considering how to create some shade in your backyard you may find yourself considering a few pergola options. The traditional pergola is one option, but with the openings always open, there is not much shade and definitely no hiding from the rain. You may consider a solar sail which is a sheet of sail cloth held by an aluminum or steel frame.

These provide some shade and shield from the rain. You may also consider building a solid roof covered patio or cabana structure which would provide shade and protection from the rain all the time. There is a happy medium though, between the open pergola and the solid roof covered patio, and that is the metal or aluminum pergola. There is no difference between a metal and aluminum pergola.

Aluminum Pergola Popularity

The aluminum pergola is somewhat new to the market, but it’s becoming increasingly popular in the last 5 years. They are manufactured as a unit and come as prefabricated parts which are installed by the local franchisee. All aluminum pergola manufacturers provide you with some basic options, such as color choice of the frame, size of the posts, size of the pergola itself and so on. The real customization comes when you look at what each manufacturer offers.

Aluminum Pergola Manufacturers

One manufacturer is Apollo. Apollo provides a louvered roof system which opens and closes. The beauty of the system is that it can be closed to protect from rain and sunshine, or it can be opened to allow the sun to pour in. You can choose to have recessed lights installed into the structure and a ceiling fan as well. Apollo offers few options, but provides an excellent system and if you’re not looking for too much customization, they might be right for you.

Apollo Aluminum Pergola In Backyard Next To Guest House

One of Apollo’s largest competitors is Struxure. Struxure provides much of the same options as Apollo with some additional options we really like. One is the option to add heaters. These are infrared heaters which are installed on the underside of the pergola structure. Adding heaters may sound like a luxury you don’t need, but if you live in a cold climate, adding these heaters can give you a few months more of use every year. Likewise, another Struxure option we like is the phantom screens. These provide insect screens at each opening. Therefore, if you close the roof and close the automatic screens, you will have a bug free environment.

Struxure Aluminum Pergola


Aluminum pergolas often wind up costing as much or less than their custom built counterparts. Obviously, if you incorporate every option imaginable into your aluminum pergola you can drive the costs higher. But when comparing apples to apples the aluminum pergola provides you with sunshine when you want it, and shields you from the sun and rain at a whim. Needless to say it’s not a bad idea to consider Aluminum pergolas as a part of your backyard transformation.