Get A Quick Quote
Simple Do-It-Yourself Patio Kits from Shade Structures Inc.
Alumashade Blog
Phone: 1-888-Alumawood
Fax: 1-888-619-8849
Read Our Blog View Our Photo Gallery View Our Guarantee Watch Our Help Videos

Alumashade Blog

Category 1 Archives

Solar power

You can now add Solar panels to your AlumaShade patio kits.

Alumashade patio covers are a great place to locate your solar panels.  They are up off the ground so they may be less likely to be shaded by surrounding trees and buildings. They are also better protected from being damaged when they are located on your patio cover and you will have more yard space.

You also won’t have to worry about leaks inside your home and costly roof repairs when you have your solar panels installed on top of your Alumashade shade structure.

We will work with any licensed Solar company on a design customized for your project. We do not charge extra for this service.  Just let us know on your Quick Quote Form that you are interested in installing solar panels on your cover and we will begin designing your custom project.


Attaching a Lattice cover to the wall

We received this question today about ledger boards.

“Is it possible to attach rafters to my stucco wall directly and not use the ledger board?”

You may attach the Alumashade rafters directly to the wall of your house as long as the rafter brackets are screwed into solid wood. This wood can be on the wall like a ledger board or may be inside the wall behind the plaster or siding that cover the wall.

Attaching directly to the wall without a ledger board is possible if you have:
1. A two story house. You could attach the Alumashade rafters at the rim joist height where the second floor is. There would be solid wood in this area.
2. Over windows and/or doors in the wall as they will have a large header (solid wood) above them. This is usually not the case for the entire length of the cover though.

If you have just an open wall where there are 2×4 studs at 16″ o.c. it would be very difficult to try to attach the rafter hangers to the studs individually.

The rafters are normally 24″ o.c. on an Alumashade cover. We can put the Alumashade rafters 16″ o.c. for an additional cost (as there would be more rafters) but a framed wall is never exactly and uniformly 16″ o.c. There almost always will be windows & doors that will break up the 16″ o.c. layout pattern of the wall studs, therefore, your Alumashade rafters wouldn’t be uniformly 16″ o.c., it would look really bad trying to do it this way.

There are a few different ways to do ledger boards. Look through our blogs for more information.

Custom Alumashade Covers

There are so many possibilities of design with our Alumashade products. This is an Alumawood shade structure supplied by Amerimax Building Products. This cover was built at a park in San Diego County, CA. The developer wanted a semi-circular design to complement the circular planter.

Our crew loves challenges of covers like this and had a great time designing and constructing this project. As with all freestanding structures the Alumashade posts have steel posts inside of them.  The steel posts set are approximately 24″ into large 30″ cubed concrete footings. This cover has 24 posts, (that’s a couple cement trucks of concrete!)  Here is a video about freestanding covers

Whether your project is custom or standard, we here at are happy to help walk you through process from concept to completion.

Alumashade Mitered Corners

Here we can see both ends of the mitered corner we did on an Alumashade structure at a fire station in Perris, CA.

This job had double 3×8 headers and 3×8 rafters.  We used a custom 3×8 ledger wrap by ripping down a 3×8 header beam and placing it over a 2×8 wood ledger.  We put up the wood ledger, countersunk the lag bolts and then covered it all with our ledger wrap. Notice how we angled the ends of the ledger board to accommodate the 3 rafters coming off the corner.

You can do almost any of the custom applications with Alumashade that you can with wood.

The benefit of using Alumwood or Weatherwood from is no rotting, warping, painting, termite damage and it won’t burn!

Wood Rot

This is an example of rotted wood behind a wood awning that was attached to the house. Many times, when even small amounts of water migrate into the house the rotted wood can’t be seen from the outside. This rotted wood was hidden behind the ledger of a wood patio cover. Alumashade covers will not rot! Aluminum is a great alternative to wood. All our aluminum structures are made for at least 80% recycled aluminum.

What are Alumashade Structures?

Alumashade is a term we use to describe any aluminum shade structure that has a wood grain embossed finish.  These structures are designed to look like a wood structures when they are completed unlike the old “mobile home style” aluminum patio covers which have a smooth aluminum finish.

Our shade structures also carry a manufacturer’s limited lifetime warranty on the paint finish which is one of the biggest reasons our customers purchase Alumashade.  No more painting that wood patio cover every few years to keep it looking good!

Alumashade structures are made of recycled aluminum.  Recycling aluminum is far less expensive and energy-intensive than creating new aluminum. Recycling aluminum only requires about 5% of the energy to make new aluminum.

We use Alumashade as a general term to describe the many embossed aluminum shade products on the market. These products are made by several different manufactures. Although these structures are almost identical in appearance each manufacturer has their own name brand for their particular product.  These brands include: Alumawood, Weatherwood, Elitewood, Classic Lattice, Ultra Lattice & DuraCool.

When receiving a “Quick Quote” request from a customer we take into consideration their design parameters, required loads, location, delivery options and the overall price point of the product.  We then choose the best match between their project and the available products.

Here at we have over 30 years experience in constructing and designing Alumashade structures. We can help guide you through your entire project, from design to completion.

Types of Structures

There are many types of structures available at

Our available structure types include:

  • Lattice
  • Solid
  • Insulated
  • Adjustable
  • AlumaVue
  • Combo
  • Custom
LATTICE             Lattice is not only practical but also beautiful. A lattice patio cover provides shade for your outdoor living space without screening out refreshing breezes.
SOLID                A solid patio roof is your best choice for providing your family and your outdoor furniture with maximum protection against the outdoor elements.
INSULATED                 Best used for 2 story homes where access on top of the roof may be needed for maintenance. Top and bottom of roof look identical. Easy access to cleaning out rain gutters. May be enclosed and conditioned.
ADJUSTABLE           This is our top of the line cover. This cover opens and closes with the touch of a button with the optional motor.
ALUMAVUE                 Offers both benefits of Solid and Lattice roofs. AlumaVue will keep the rain out but will let the sun in. The top polycarbonate panels come in clear, bronze and opaque white.


COMBO                        A combination of any of our cover types. A combo cover offers both benefits of Solid and Lattice roofs in specified areas.
CUSTOM               There are unlimited custom applications with Alumashade material.

The custom option are only limited to your imagination (and our available sizes). We will do an entire blog on examples of custom covers, look for it soon.



Features of Alumashade include:

  • Heavy header beam construction
  • Richly textured woodgrain finish
  • Weather resistant paint finish
  • Color-matching fasteners
  • Variety of popular colors
Get A Quick QuoteLearn More

Which Style Do You Prefer?

Alumawood™ Aluminum Patio Covers: Lattice or Solid