Glass canopies are a common design element added to homes and commercial buildings around the world, whether they’re new or old. Recently, adding a glass canopy to a patio has proven to be a popular way to increase the light and feeling of being outdoors while providing shelter from rain or damaging sunlight.





How Glass Canopies Are Added to a Patio


Glass canopies for patios are usually made from existing timber roof structures with a perspex roof. Generally, the customer wants to change the roof to glass. The amount of work that needs to be done depends entirely on the existing structure.


Another common way that a glass canopy can be installed over a patio is to install an aluminium extrusion, as shown in the image below, to support the glass canopy.




Keep in mind that if there is a large patio area, it’s best to fix a glass canopy directly to a structure rather than to suspend it.


Installation methods for these kinds of installed glass canopies are usually simple. They are primarily subject to the span of the glass between fixing points.



Things to Keep in Mind During Installation


Canopies can be complex structures and are not covered directly under the glazing code. It’s important to ensure in the planning stages that everything is done according to the rules and regulations. A consultation with an engineer to determine the number and size of brackets, fixing methods, and glass types is necessary.


Remember the following during the planning stages and discuss them with your engineer. This way, you can get the kinks out before your glass canopy project gets going too far and a change or fix would be costly.



Ensure there is adequate guttering at any low points so that in a heavy downpour, water is drained properly and it is possible to walk under the edges of the canopy without being soaked. One of the major benefits of a glass canopy is that it keeps users dry underneath. Failing to install adequate guttering defeats that purpose.



Make sure the installation has sufficient overlaps so that there are no gaps in the canopy. Protection from the elements above is a positive effect of a canopy. As the sun moves across the sky or wind blows, sunlight, rain and other objects can fall through.


Roof Pitch

Is the existing roof angled to direct water and debris in a certain direction?


How does the existing pitch affect the newly installed glass canopy?


Is it necessary to angle the glass for the same reason?


Consider these questions before installing your canopy so you can plan for the appropriate supports and fasteners.





Consider the kinds of maintenance and upkeep a new canopy might require.


Is there anything in the design that can minimise required maintenance?


Glass Type

Remember that the type of glass used on the canopy is dependent on the performance required.


Is it meant to allow light or provide protection from the sun?


Depending on the purpose of the canopy, you may need to use different kinds of glass, like tinted or clear glass.


Photo by Darwin Webb Landscape Architects, P.S.Discover patio design inspiration



Any large horizontal surface has a risk of being blown away by wind.


Have you ever seen a trampoline in a windy storm?


Ensure you have adequate downward fixing, especially in a high wind area.