what is a louvered roof

7 Best Louvered Roofs for Your Backyard (Detailed Guide)

In Buyers Guide, Lawn & Garden by Jamie

If you’ve been looking for an elegant change to your backyard or patio area, have you considered a louvered roof? These patio covers are unique, architecturally interesting, and versatile- you can enjoy your patio in any season with a louvered roof!

But what is there to learn about louvered roofs? In this guide, I’ll be teaching you everything you need to know about these outdoor marvels- from how they work to what they can do for you, and even some fantastic prefabricated choices that could work for your own home!

Ready to learn about louvered roofs? Let’s get started now.

What is a Louvered Roof?

If you aren’t sure what a louvered roof is, you’re not alone. These patio covers are unique, elegant, and innovative- they are designed with slats that can be positioned either manually or automatically to your heart’s content! 

The bulk of a louvered roof can be angled up to 180 degrees so that you can maximize the sun’s rays, or adjust the roof to block wind, rain, hail, or snow. A louvered roof can be left flat during inclement weather as well, and the rain, hail, or snow will run off the roof’s moving parts, into gutters, and onto the ground below.

These covers are architectural marvels in a lot of ways- they are half pergola, half rotating shelter cover. Louvered roofs are a fantastic option for those of you looking for an elegant and customizable patio area, especially in a location with a lot of direct sunlight!

How does a Louvered Roof Work?

The mechanics behind a louvered roof are more complicated to build than to operate. That is why I recommend working with a design team and contractor who has built louvered roofs before, or perhaps even specializes in them.

However, premade louvered roofs will also work- no matter what, you will have control over the roof slats, whether it be manually rotating them or pressing a button and having the roof above your head change automatically.

Louvered roofs are designed with the sun in mind. They are built to change with the sun’s usual path, and you have full control over how much sun you wish to see. The horizontal slats work similarly to blinds in your home- you can think of your patio cover as a large window!

A louvered roof has many moving parts, not only including the many slats above your head that are built to control how much sun or shade you are getting on your patio. Some louvered roofs have LED lighting, ceiling fans, built-in outdoor speakers, and mobile app-controlled features.

That is why working with a professional is often a good idea for homeowners considering a louvered roof. These contractors can help you choose the best-sized patio cover for your space, as well as customize the louvered roof to your heart’s content!

But why else might you want a louvered roof, and what’s the primary difference between it and a pergola? Let’s take a look now!

What’s the Difference between a Louvered Roof and a Regular Pergola Roof?

The primary difference between a louvered roof and a regular pergola roof is that a pergola is a completely open structure at all times. There are still slats along the roof of a pergola, but they are immobile and allow rain, snow, sun, and wind to come through.

A louvered roof has adjustable slats so that you don’t have to deal with the sunshine or weather if you don’t want to. The overall look of louvered roofs and pergolas are the same- they will both add an elegant visual element to any patio, though pergolas are often a more natural wooden look.

A pergola roof may be less expensive than a louvered roof, depending on the size, materials used, and if you work with a contractor or purchase a prefabricated pergola. This could be a perk for many homeowners, but a louvered roof offers the most versatility for an outdoor space.

What does a Louvered Roof Provide?

Given the higher price point of a louvered roof, you may be wondering what all it can provide for you as a consumer. Let’s take a look at all the benefits of a louvered roof.

Shade from the Sun (or Not!)

Unlike a pergola, a louvered roof has a completely adjustable roof. This means that you have the option to close off the top of your patio area and have ample cover, including shade from the sun. Louvered roofs have another perk built into this roof system: you don’t always have to be shaded either!

The adjustable slats found in the roofs of these unique patio covers can change at your leisure. You can choose to enjoy a full day of sun, or you can adjust the slats as the sun changes for the perfect amount of shade. 

Plus, some louvered roofs are made of tinted plexiglass or plastic- this means that light will still filter through, but you don’t have to worry about any direct sun or rain falling on you. Louvered roofs cannot pull back completely; the slats will always remain, but you can still open them wide.

Snow Free Winter Area

Keep your deck free of snow so that you can enjoy it all winter long! A louvered roof is ideal for your BBQ area, and great for hot tub areas. Snow typically damages a hot tub cover, so this style of roof allows some cover all winter and sunshine in the summer.

You can still enjoy your outdoor patio or garden without rain, snow, or hail putting a damper on things. A louvered roof is different from a pergola in this way: having an entirely covered roof over your deck means more time outside.

A Louvered Modern Design Increases Property Value

Given the high upfront cost of a louvered roof, it is safe to say that installing one in your backyard will increase your home’s value. A pergola will do this as well, but not nearly as much as a louvered roof, especially if it matches the exterior of your home!

Indoor-outdoor living is all the rage, and a louvered roof is perfect for achieving a modern homeowner’s oasis. You can even get louvered roofs with wall screens and privacy features so that your outdoor area remains serene, private, and special. But more on that later.

You can Control the Temperature!

With a louvered roof, you don’t have to wait for the perfect sunny and 70-degree day in order to enjoy your backyard. Using the adjustable slats, you can perfect your outdoor living area in any weather. Too hot? Close the slats and enjoy a day of shade. Too cold? Angle the slats just so- the wind can pass right over you!

Many homeowners set up propane fire pits or other outdoor heating options beneath their louvered roofs. This can be another perk for homeowners hoping to enjoy their outdoor areas during winter. You dream it, a louvered roof can help you achieve it.

Privacy from Neighbors

Some outdoor spaces simply fall flat due to their utter lack of privacy. This is something that a louvered roof can help with, especially if you have it customized with adjustable walls. If you are concerned about your backyard privacy, choosing a louvered roof could be an excellent solution for this.

Choosing a patio cover with screens or removable walls can help with privacy issues, and many louvered roofs have adjustable wall options. While it will usually cost a bit more, you can have a fully enclosed patio cover- and total privacy too.


7 Best Louvered Roofs for Your Backyard

Are you considering a louvered roof for your backyard or patio area? Let’s take a look at some of the best options on the market today, including ones that you build yourself, or ones directly manufactured by skilled patio cover contractors!

1. SORARA Outdoor Louvered Pergola

SORARA Outdoor Louvered Pergola 10' × 13' Aluminum Black Outdoor Deck Garden Patio Gazebo with Adjustable Roof

See on Amazon

SORARA Outdoor Living’s Pergola is a great choice if you are hoping to build and install your pergola yourself. While it may seem like a large project at first, this pergola is worth it. Grab a friend or the whole family and install this beauty yourself in a few hours! 

Speaking of beauty, this pergola is also a beast. It is made of corrosion-resistant steel, and it’s heavy- the package weighs almost 400 pounds! However, that means you’ll have a structure that lasts a lifetime, especially in heavy winds and rain. Many reviewers mention its stability and reliability.

This particular louvered roof is manual, meaning there is a crank that you rotate in order to achieve your perfect lighting. They recommend leaving your patio cover slats open during times of extreme wind, rain, and snow, just to extend the longevity of your slats.

It is available in a few different sizes to fit your backyard area: there’s a 10′ × 10′ option and a 10’x13’, but that may not be big enough for your outdoor area. Thankfully, it is available in a 10’x20’ here. There are helpful instructions included for building this louvered roof, and you can even purchase separate wall attachments here.

2. Sunnyglade Patio Pergola with Adjustable Louvered Gazebo

Sunnyglade Patio Pergola Canopy Modern Aluminum Pergola with Adjustable Louvered Gazebo for BBQ, Backyard,Party, Lawn,Garden (10ft X13ft)See on Amazon

Sunnyglade has made a similar louvered roof as SORARA- classy and beautiful, and this louvered roof pergola is no exception. This is another project for you to build, but with the help of someone else, you should have this patio cover up in no time!

An important note about this particular model? Many reviewers mention that it is more of a charcoal gray rather than a black pergola. This may be a perk to some homeowners, but for others, it may come as a shock and a disappointment. Just to let you know!

No matter what, this louvered roof is anti-corrosive and built to handle any weather, plus it’s also heavy enough to withstand windy days. This 10×13 cover includes one shaded wall, as well as a manual crank. Consider it for your outdoor project, especially if you are hoping for a low-maintenance option.

3. Apollo Opening Roof

Boasting a basically maintenance-free pergola, Apollo Opening Roof is another company for you to consider for your backyard transformation. If luxury is what you are seeking, Apollo is your best option. 

Their frames are made from marine-grade extruded aluminum, known to have much higher corrosion resistance, choosing the Apollo frame ensures a long-lasting outdoor louvered roof system. What is also great about Apollo Opening Roofs is that they can be integrated into preexisting structures, whether they are made from steel or timber.

This pergola has all the bells and whistles- five standard colors, a rain and wind sensor, app-enabled control, and voice activation. Keep in mind the weather sensors are an upgraded feature and do not come standard.

5 Standard Color Options for Louvers and Frames:

  • White
  • Pewter
  • Sand
  • Bronze
  • Black

A 6th color option is available in “Slate”, but it is available for the frame only, not the louvers.

Even better, if you thought you couldn’t find a louvered roof system to match your backyard decor Apollo Opening Roof now offers custom colors and specialty finishes upon request.

Apollo also offers a 15-year warranty for your pergola’s finishes and a 5-year warranty for all of the motors and electrical systems involved. This is a pergola with peace of mind built in- it may be worth the investment for your home! If you want style and luxury Apollo is the way to go. 

4. Pergola X by Struxure

Looking for a more hands-on company to help with your louvered roof? Take a look at the many options offered by Struxure. They offer 4 top of the line options, including more customizable options for your home or business.

This pergola is smart, of all things. Powered by a mobile app, you can do just about anything with this patio cover. Operate your system with Alexa or Google, as well as a more traditional remote for those of you less tech-savvy consumers. This roof can connect to your smart home too!

It’s not only easy to control- it controls itself in many ways. With incorporated wind and rain sensors, this louvered roof can open or close its slats, depending on the weather. It also has cold weather sensors, which helps prevent your slats from sticking should there be ice, snow, or frost.

Struxure also offers a unique Trax system of moving the louvers as well as the included walls of your patio cover. There are LEDs incorporated, and the company will update your system as updates become available. If you have the budget, this is the best of the best that you can buy.

5. Equinox Louvered Roof

Speaking of customized, Equinox is another company to consider contracting for your louvered roof project. These pergolas are customizable to the max- from size, color, technology, and screens, you can build exactly what you’re looking for with knowledgeable louver experts!

While these louvered roofs are made of impressive aluminum finishes, you can choose from at least five different colors to match your home’s exterior. But that’s not where the customization ends- not even close. You can choose whatever size suits your home best, and dream from there.

Much like Struxure, you can have wind, rain, and snow sensors installed. This roof is also smart and controlled via mobile app. Plus, you can have ceiling fans, privacy screens, lighting, and even heaters specially installed in your pergola. It’s a homeowner’s dream- if you can afford it!

6. Solara Adjustable Patio Covers

Solara is there to help you create the backyard space of your dreams, as they offer both pre-designed structures and custom designs to suit your exact needs. Their louvered roofs may not have quite as many perks as the past few selections, but their structures are beautiful and long-lasting.

These pergolas are made of aluminum, much like the past few choices. This makes them sturdy and easy to clean and maintain. These louvers are activated using a wall switch, and you can adjust certain sections of your patio rather than opening up the entire roof.

A helpful thing to note about Solara is their many warranties, including a lifetime warranty for your structure’s posts and beams. There are additional 10 and 15 year warranties for your other parts, and they are very clear about limitations and exclusions. They want you to take pride in your pergola for life.

7. Arcadia System – Adjustable Patio Covers

Made in the USA, Arcadia makes adjustable patio covers with homeowners in mind. Custom-made to whatever specifications you provide, Arcadia is there to build you the perfect pergola. Whether you want an awkwardly sized cover or one in bright pink, Arcadia can do that for you!

Their heavy duty aluminum construction patio covers are perfect for withstanding weather of any type. Arcadia boasts that these roofs are durable, specifically tested in high winds and large piles of snow. They also offer a few different warranty options so that they have your back should anything fail.

While you can’t tell Alexa to open the roof for you, these remote controlled patio covers are built for years to come. Plus, this patio cover comes with a solar panel, meaning it will be self-sustaining for the life of your louvers!


Louvered Roofs for Your Backyard FAQs

Still, have questions about whether or not a louvered roof is right for you? Let’s take a look at some frequently asked questions now!

How much do Louvered Roofs Typically Cost?

Depending on the type, finishes, and size, a louvered roof can cost anywhere from a few thousand dollars to at least $200 per square foot. Choosing a prefabricated louvered roof that you construct yourself will save you money, but will be labor intensive.

All patio cover contractors have their own pricing guides and installation fees. I encourage you to reach out to any of the contractors on this list for a more specific quote, especially if you are searching for a large or high tech pergola.

Are Louvered Roofs Worth it?

It depends on your backyard goals, in many respects. If you are looking for an investment that will increase the price of your home and you want the flexibility to harness the sun’s rays, a louvered roof may be worth it to you.

However, if you are simply searching for some shade in your backyard, a standard umbrella or canvas patio cover may suffice. However, louvered roofs require little to no maintenance and offer unparalleled climate control. If you enjoy your outdoor space daily, it may be worth the investment!

Manual vs Motorized Louvered Roofs?

Both styles of louvered roof have their perks and drawbacks. A manual roof will take more elbow grease and won’t be capable of closing itself in high wind or rain, but it will be less expensive and you won’t have to worry about paying to replace any specialized motors.

However, a motorized louvered roof can come equipped with more high tech and convenient features, which can give homeowners even more peace of mind. Keep in mind that most warranties don’t cover motors forever, and these can be costly to replace.

Final Thoughts

If you are planning a backyard makeover, you may want to consider installing a louvered roof system over your deck or patio. These technological marvels will elevate your outdoor living space, and you’ll no doubt find yourself enjoying your patio cover season after season!