Whats Your old Pergola Hiding

Patio Maintenance

If you like reading or watching a good thriller you expect to be kept guessing through the twists and turns until in the end and it’s all a surprise.

Old pergolas can be a bit like this too with repairs, patches on patches for a quick fix, a fresh lick of paint. You never quite know what your old pergola could be hiding especially if it was already there when you bought your home until you remove the old pergola to see a nasty surprise.

old timber pergola removed and replace by great aussie patios perth

Old timber pergola that has been patched up and repaired over the years

In the Perth area there are a lot of homes that still have old timber pergolas on the back of their homes.  Some of these have stood the test of time, some are just barely hanging on making them a danger to you the home owner, your family and your home.

A lot of these timber pergolas were originally covered with shade cloth only to be replaced with either fiberglass roof sheets or steel roof sheets. Some may have had gutters and down pipes added and then there are those that have been partly or fully enclosed.

old timber pergola falling apart that was replaced by great aussie patios perth

A damaged timber pergola that could be a danger to your family and your home

More recently Great Aussie Patios has been replacing older steel patios that have seen many years of use and abuse and like the wooden pergolas these too can hide issues or damage to the house fascia, guttering and downpipes.

It can be hard to notice problem areas to the untrained eye, however our sales team at Great Aussie Patios takes special care when looking at replacing an old pergola when quoting for a new patio.

We are often called out to provide a quote due to the old patio falling apart or leaking, however the leaking could be hidden damage that until the old pergola is removed has not been noticed.

Wooden Pergolas

One of the most common issues with wooden pergolas is wet rot. With years of soaking up rain like a sponge the timber swells or grows. It allows fungal spores to grow which over time make the timber loose its strength and eventually collapse.

Even those pergolas that have had the shade cloth removed and replaced at some stage with a solid roof sheet still run this risk of wet rot due to many years of exposure to the elements prior to the solid roof being installed.

timber pergola with wet rot replaced with new patio by great aussie patios perth

Notice the wet rot in the structural edge beams causing them to loose their rigidity and sag 

A lot of wooden pergolas were painted but over time the paint wears away exposing the wood, it will soak up the moister and retain it. When this is next to your house fascia or guttering were the patio meets the home it can cause rusting issues to these areas but is hidden away and not always noticeable.

This constant wet wood against the steel of the house fascia and guttering will eventually find a weak spot and attack the area causing rust. This in most cases remains isolated to the one spot however rust can spread quite easily and time is all it needs.

water damage to house behind timber pergola

Notice the dirt and old tree debris sitting behind the timber beam in front of fascia and staining to the eves, this is a sign of hidden damage

rust on gutter just visible behind the timber pergola

There are signs of rust on the house gutter which could mean that the existing house gutter will need to be replaced along this section

Steel Pergolas

If however you have an old steel carport or patio then the most common issue would be rust. Like kryptonite to Superman rust is to steel. Rust will eventually find its way into a steel patio, all it needs is a small exposed area to take hold.

Many years of dust, dirt and grime finding its way between steel beams against the house fascia and guttering lead to moister build up. This moister is retained for some time as it will not dry out or takes longer to dry out.

Once rust has set in it quickly begins to eat away the steel causing the steel to break down. This can have a devastating effect on your house guttering and fascia that will need to be replaced along with the old steel pergola.

holes and rust in fascia

Old steel patio to be replaced, you can see predrilled holes in fascia and rust showing through, fascia could do with a repaint

The effects of rust are even greater as you get closer to the coast as the wind carries salt from the ocean and deposits it on your old steel pergola.

What to Do

If your old pergola is showing signs of wood rot or rust then there is a chance that this could also have an effect on areas where it adjoins the home as mentioned above.

Its these area’s that cannot always be seen as they are hidden by the old structure that could need repair or replacing.

In the situation were you are looking to replace the old pergola our friendly staff would advise of the possible issue’s and would also look to provide a solution were possible.

This may include options for you the owner to do the removal so that you can see if anything may need to be replaced prior to install of the new patio.

Rusted internal down pipe causing damage

This old steel patio was to be replaced with a new Colorbond patio, however our representative noticed a lot of water damage were the internal downpipe was located and the cause was rust, this needed to be replaced

By doing the pull down yourself it may allow you extra time to clean up affected areas like the fascia. In most cases the fascia just needs to be cleaned, sanded back and repainted, likewise this could also be said about the existing house gutter.

weeds and debris build up in old existing house guttering

A new patio was to run along this side of the house, but upon a better inspection after the pull down of the old pergola there was rust in the gutter from all the weeds and debris

Our staff at Great Aussie Patios takes pride in their work from the initial call to the final call and we are always mindful to provide the home owner with the best possible advice when it comes to possible issues when removing the old pergola.

With our many years of experience we have been able to work closely with the home owners providing them with advice when it comes to the removal of the old pergola.

If you would like to meet with one of our highly trained representatives to discuss the removal of the old pergola for a new steel patio please call our office on (08) 9493 7115 for a free onsite quote today or email us and we can contact you.


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