If your entertaining space is on a breezy hillside, along the seashore, on a boat deck or dock or other windy location, then a wind-resistant umbrella is your best choice for safety, longevity, care-free entertaining and sun protection. But, what makes one patio umbrella more wind-resistant than another?
The key elements that make an outdoor umbrella wind-resistant are flexibility and strength in both the integrity of the materials and their fabrication.
Wind can be relentless and unforgiving. It can be constant or it can gust. The best wind resistant patio umbrellas have fiberglass canopy ribs and a fiberglass pole core. Fiberglass is an inherently strong material, even when it bends. This is not true of aluminum, wood or most other composite materials. It is this strength and flexibility that enables a fiberglass umbrella to absorb the forces of the wind – they bend, they don’t break — and still hold their shape and support your umbrella canopy at the same time.
The most wind-resistant canopies have wind vents or are designed to present the least amount of wind-resistance possible. Umbrellas can be made with one, two or three layers of wind vents which allow the wind to pass through the canopy without encountering any resistance — resistance which can cause an umbrella to lift up, blow over or break. The moving air is channeled upwards and escapes through the vents as if the umbrella canopy wasn’t there at all. Some umbrellas are designed with a streamlined profile which allows wind to simply pass by without meeting any barriers to its movement. You will notice that this type of umbrella has a flatter profile.
Manufacturers incorporate the wind factor into their fabrication methods. Extra strong stitching, reinforced seams, durable welds and high gauge fittings are all factored in to withstand extreme and variable wind conditions. While wind may be a challenge in your location, know that manufacturers have met your challenge with wind-resistant products that bend, not break.