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Patio Accessories

There is more to patios than just furniture. Lots, lots more. If you really want to get the most out of your patio, then invest in some patio accessories.

Keeping Your Furniture
Yes, there is more to your backyard than just the furniture, but if you don't take care of that furniture then you'll just have a backyard of accessories. If you don't have an enclosed patio to protect your patio furniture, then take the easy way out by using patio furniture covers.

A patio furniture cover is usually made of fleece-backed vinyl. The fleece side helps to ensure that your furniture doesn't get any scuffmarks while the vinyl side repels water, snow and wind. You can purchase individual furniture covers for each chair and patio table you have or you can buy one that will cover both. While you're at it, you may want to look into purchasing some other patio covers including ones for your patio umbrella, chaise lounge, barbeque and your patio fireplace. If you have wicker patio furniture, then covers are absolutely essential to maintaining the quality of your furniture.

Running for Patio Cover
Now that your furniture is taken care of, it's time to relax. But is that sun feeling just a bit too hot on your skin? Patio umbrellas can help cool you off by providing you with some shade. Many patio sets come with umbrellas, however you can also buy them separately. Most umbrellas nowadays work with a crank so you can open it to just the right level. Additionally, they usually have a tilt feature so that you can adjust the umbrella to block out the sun from any angle. However, more basic patio umbrellas may not have this feature.

While patio umbrellas are very handy, some people prefer a more permanent state of shade in their backyard. Installing a patio roof can help make sure that very little sun ever finds it way onto your patio. Yet, a patio roof offers more than just protection from UV rays; it can also allow you to enjoy your backyard even when the sun isn't shining. Aluminum patio covers are a popular choice with many homeowners because they are easy to take care of. But they are not the only option available to you.

Patio awnings are another great way to get a lot of shade coverage on your patio. Some awnings are retractable, which means you can regulate just how much or how little shade there is on your patio. Other awnings are more permanent structures but are built with a lattice design, thereby allowing some light to get onto your patio. For a more attractive way of staying in the shade, consider growing some vine plants on your lattice roof. The plants will naturally cool the area while providing a decorative feature to your backyard.

Those Patio Lanterns
As the sun starts to set, you wish you could stay out just a bit longer if only it weren't so dark! This problem is easily fixed – just put in some patio lighting. Looking for full-out, bright lights for your big city home? Then you'll probably want to install some patio lights. These permanent fixtures will light up your backyard with the flip of the switch. If you're not an experienced DIY-er when it comes to electrical projects, then you may want to consider hiring an electrician to put these in for you.

Want ambiance lighting? Patio string lights add a nice soft glow to your patio without blinding the neighbors. These types of lights are so popular, you can get them in almost any design you want. Choose from simple, soft white lights to colored bulbs to pink flamingos, chili peppers, horses, fish, owls, flowered Tiffany bulbs and flower garland lights.

If you want to save on money and help the environment, then why not buy some solar patio lights? These lights charge during the day and automatically turn on when they sense it is getting dark outside. Since they operate on solar power, you don't have to worry about any wires or access to electrical outlets, which makes them entirely portable.

For special occasions, like a backyard barbeque, you may want to put in some patio torches. Torches run on oil or propane and are a common fixture at most backyard luaus. However, their large flames can be a very serious fire hazard, so be sure to keep them away from children, plants, the patio bar and drunken guests.

Warming Up
Just because summer is over, doesn't mean you have to pack your entire backyard patio up and start hibernating in your home. A patio heater can help keep you and your family warm on those chilly spring and fall evenings. Looking something like a streetlight, most outdoor heaters are propane outdoor heaters. With the help of outdoor patio heaters, sitting outside will feel like July even though it is really October. Not surprisingly, they are a common fixture on bar patios in Canada well into December.

Patio fire pits are another way to get the heat going in your backyard. As with most other patio accessories, you have a variety of options when it comes to a patio fire pit. You could turn it into a DIY project and build one yourself or go out and buy one. There are fire pits that are portable while others will stay right where you put them. You can choose between cast iron, copper and steel. Or go with the distinctive chiminea to add a delightful bit of charm to your backyard.

Packing it In
If you have the space for it, there are many other accessories that you can place on your patio or in your backyard to make it more relaxing and inviting. If you like rocking chairs, then you'll love patio swings. Built for one to four people, these swings can be free standing or attached to a sturdy patio roof. To make your swing even more comfortable, then buy some patio cushions. Patio furniture cushions are also a good idea if you have wrought iron patio furniture.

People who live by a busy street and want to get rid of, or at least minimize, the noise of the traffic will benefit greatly from installing patio fountains. Large or small, the peaceful trickling of water can calm your nerves while blocking out unwanted sounds. Whether you buy one or build one, you'll quickly find the addition turns your patio into a serene haven.

With all your patio chair cushions and covers, fireplace accessories, patio lights and patio heaters, you're probably wondering where you'll put all this stuff when you're not using it. Simple! A deck box will store all your patio accessories while still keeping your backyard patio looking lovely and neat.