Pitched or flat pergola? Differences and which to choose

Apr 1, 2024 | Blog, Pergolas

Features of the pitched pergola

A pitched pergola is an architectural structure that has inclinations or slopes, unlike traditional horizontal pergolas. The characteristics of a sloping pergola may vary depending on the specific design and requirements of the project, but the main characteristic of a pitched pergola is the slope of its roof or beams. This inclination can be adjusted according to aesthetic and functional preferences.

The roof inclination adds an interesting design element and can fit in well with various architectural styles, but it also has a useful functionality, which is to help with rainwater drainage, reducing the risk of accumulation and damage caused by standing water.

The pitched pergola can be designed to fit spaces of different shapes and sizes. This adaptability is useful when you want to integrate the pergola into an existing environment, even with a particular architectural style.

Depending on requirements, a pitched pergola can be equipped with additional features such as the provision for LED lighting in the transoms, the installation of sliding glass windows and vertical awnings, such as Gaviota’s Clima Rain.

What is the difference between pitched and flat pergolas

The main difference between pitched and flat pergolas lies in the orientation of their structures. The pitched pergola has a sloping roof or beams, creating an angled profile, while the flat horizontal pergola has a flat or only slightly sloping roof.

In terms of aesthetics, on the other hand, the pitched pergola offers a more dynamic and contemporary appearance due to its sloping roof, while the horizontal pergola has a more traditional and classic look with its flat or slightly sloping roof and is better suited to more minimalist designs.

Another difference concerns the sun protection offered: the sloping roof provides greater sun protection, whereas the flat pergola, on the other hand, offers uniform coverage but might be less effective at providing shade when the sun is low on the horizon.

When to choose the pitched pergola

In situations where the ground has a slope, a pitched pergola can be more suitable to follow the natural inclination of the terrain without requiring significant leveling work.

Moreover, the sloped roof of a pitched pergola can provide greater sun protection, especially when the sun is high in the sky. This makes it a suitable option for creating more effective shaded areas.

There are a number of aesthetic and design reasons for choosing the pitched pergola. This type of pergola definitely adds a modern and contemporary touch to the outdoor environment, and its design flexibility allows for the creation of more varied shapes and profiles, giving it a more distinctive appearance compared to common horizontal pergolas. Just think of the effect offered by the Hera pergola from Gaviota, which, with its side guides and its cassette, is an excellent solution for creating comfortable environments with a contemporary touch.

Which slope to choose for a pergola

The ideal slope for a pergola depends on various factors, including the climate of the area, the function of the pergola, aesthetic preferences, and drainage ease.

In areas with heavy rainfall or snowfall, it may be advisable to opt for a steeper slope to facilitate water or snow drainage and prevent unwanted accumulation. If the pergola will be installed in a location with a mild climate and few precipitation throughout the year, a gentle slope may be sufficient. Alternatively, one can opt for a bioclimatic pergola with an adjustable slatted roof.

In terms of design, a gentle slope might complement a more traditional design, while a steeper slope could be suitable for a more modern style. In any case, the choice of slope should harmonize with the overall design of the structure and the surrounding spaces.

In general, the slope of roof in pitched pergola is in the range of 1% to 5%. However, the specific choice should be based on a careful assessment of the aforementioned factors, without ruling out the possibility of choosing flexible models with customizable inclination, such as the Gemini pergola from Gaviota.