How to Update Your Aluminum Patio Covers

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This patio would get more use with an aluminum patio cover.
This patio would get more use with an aluminum patio cover. (Image: Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Having an aluminum patio cover is a wise idea. This simple, inexpensive combination of a roof and column allows you to enjoy your patio more fully. It shields you from the sun, allowing you to eat and relax on your patio without squinting or worrying about sunburn and allows you to sit out a sudden summer shower. However, aluminum patio covers can sometimes look too industrial, clashing with the exterior of your house. Luckily, you can update such covers to harmonize with the rest of your home.

Things You'll Need

  • Heavy-duty detergent
  • Bucket
  • Rubber gloves
  • Scrub brush
  • Metal primer for exteriors
  • Paint roller
  • 3-inch nylon brush
  • Paint roller pan
  • Detergent
  • Metal oil paint
  • Stencils
  • Painter's tape
  • Spray oil paint for exteriors

Mix 1/2 cup of heavy-duty detergent with a gallon of water in a bucket. Put on a pair of rubber gloves and dip a scrub brush into the mixture. Scrub down the aluminum patio cover vigorously. Rinse clean with a garden hose. Allow it to dry.

Pour an oil-based primer for exteriors into a paint roller pan. Dip a paint roller in the primer and apply to the patio cover in an even coat. Allow it to dry for two hours. Rinse off the paint roller with soap and water.

Pour an oil-based paint in the color of your choice, ideally one that matches the house color or the house trim. Apply an even coat of this color to the aluminum patio cover. Give it 24 hours to dry and apply a second coat, allowing it to dry for the same amount of time.

Adhere stencils to the ideal places along the patio cover. For example, stencils in the shape of winding ivy would go well on the columns. Likewise, you can attach stencils in the shape of flowers along the roof or ceiling of the cover. Use painter's tape to attach the stencils.

Spray the stencils on the patio cover with an oil-based spray paint for metals and exteriors. Remove the painter's tape before you allow it to dry.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use a stepladder to reach the patio roof.

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References

  • "The Complete Guide to Patios: Plan, Build and Maintain"; Philip Schmidt; 2007
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