Hi everyone, I need some advice please. I live in a newly built house and my attempts to come up with an undercover eating area outside, are failing miserably thus far!
The area I need to cover is directly outside the glass back sliding door. The house was built to be wheelchair accessible, so the outside concrete slab is basically level with the kitchen area it connects to inside.
As such, the concrete patio sort of area is kinda impossible to work with...To ensure rain doesn't enter it slopes steeply enough to make dining not possible, both away from the house downwards, but also sloped noticeably to the right..my guess being to drain off into the drain set close to The dividing fence...only that's not in the concrete, just after it...in the grass...The backyard then slopes dramatically upward on all sides behind it right up to the fence lines of neighbours on the three sides, that are not only significantly higher as they are all on stumps, but also because our sloped block was cut into heavily to level out the area the slab was laid on.
The entire backyard had to be dug up only weeks after I moved in, to have several drains added due to a rogue builder (supposedly) not doing it all according to code The first time, so to ensure the house didnt flood from the drains in laundry, kitchen and bathroom floors when it rained..more drainage was added..however they didn't spend much time the second time around, levelling out the yard, and heavy winter rains caused the poor backyard stuck now in a valley, yet with no grass and still suffering drainage issues ;to slide down steeply in some areas, then the grass grew in and further restricted the ability of the drains to be of much use as the rainwater doesn't drain off to them. I've contacted housing many times suggesting a retaining wall could be handy etc, but 1.6 years later..no results there...
Sooooo... my metal gazebo from b. lasted one night here in this wind tunnel,before folding over itself and the metal snapping etc. I purchased a more heavy duty metal gazebo prior to Christmas...it lasted 3 hours on a mild day, before escaping the provided pegs, the dug shallow holes, with gravel ontop and took flight...over the neighbours fence, one leg narrowly missing their window, one skyward the others bent, snapped etc..whilst I was trying to decide if it stood a chance and was worth concreting in.
My skin sizzles after only five to ten minutes in the sun, so giving up wasn't an option, so as a temporary measure, I dug in 3 wooden framing 'posts' and surrounded them by bluestone rocks to prop them up, then attached the dead gazebos cloth to the drain pipes and each post. this allowed the area outside the back door to be covered and was sublime, but obv only lasts a few hours, as soon as the wind picks up, the shade sail begins to rip etc
sooooo considering all the above factors...now I simply don't know which direction to go in...Should I go a free standing type pergola where the trampoline is, solid, all wood, posts concreted in, then cover it with shade cloth/polycarbonate...or Stick to the concrete area, have shade cloth sails attached from the brick house to posts, and do them in the concrete with brackets, or just after dug deep and cemented in?
And what is more wind resilient , the high low twist, a series of triangles or can I do the rectangle I'd prefer if I get the stronger quality sails? Or will I need a metal framed sail cover ie like playground covers? Or is a retractable armed awning 4x3m that is retracted during the wind, Iol so 80% of the time a good easy option or will it not stand a chance?
I'm even considering just sticking up a polycarb greenhouse bolted to the concrete, doors open! I really had wanted to protect my table, have a BBQ and make a kinda outdoor room, to hang out in whilst I watch my child swim/ have friends over....
and how can I make a level sitting area over the concrete without making the area drain even less!
I'm allowed to do up the garden, so long as it's either done properly adhearing to permits etc, or is temporarily..ie can be removed ( I'm not going anywhere without causing damage to the property.
please take into account: ...I'm a broke, lone woman, so I'm happy to, and enjoy (trying) to build things, I will happily invest a zillion hours myself, to save enough cash that a project can actually happen,rather than be unattainable, but thus need more creative/temporary/better than the nothing I have solutions, cheap and simple ideas, compared to what might be your standard advice for this type of project. And That I know nothing about pergolas/Shade sails etc...other than I've been researching....but I'm willing, determined. or is that called stubborn? lol and have managed so far to learn anything necessary in order to conquer all my previous projects...but for the bits that just aren't diy friendly..or are highly skilled, I can bring in my tradie friend! But the poor dude is overworked enough...so lets explore all the options!
Ta so much x
Welcome to Workshop.
Could we please trouble you for some photos of the area taken during daylight hours so we can better see what you are working with? And could you please confirm if you are renting or the homeowner? It sounds like it's the former. It might also be good if you could let us know where you are based as it sounds like you have to deal with some extreme weather?
Thanks for joining in the discussion. I'm sure our ever-helpful members will be happy to assist.