6 Best Patio Umbrellas of 2024, Tested and Reviewed

Shade your space with these sturdy and stylish umbrellas. We left contenders out in rain and sunshine to see which ones performed the best.

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Updated on July 10, 2024

Photo by: Brigitt Earley

Brigitt Earley

An outdoor space is hardly complete without a patio umbrella. Not only do they provide shelter from the sun’s rays — vital on hot days — but they can also protect your outdoor furniture from premature wear and tear caused by sunlight or dropping leaves and other outdoor debris. Patio umbrellas can also provide privacy from neighboring homes in close quarters, not to mention add style to your space. But there are tons of different styles out there, from standard market options (the ones you insert into a stand) to more sophisticated cantilever styles that arches over your space, providing a little bit more coverage. Which type you choose depends on both your space and your personal preference. Below are our top picks for the best patio umbrellas.

Tested by Brigitt Earley

How We Tested

Our team of editors tested and reviewed top-rated patio umbrellas from nine different brands. To choose which umbrellas to test, our editors scoured numerous online buying guides and bestseller lists from online retailers including Amazon, Wayfair and The Home Depot. The umbrellas we tested came at a variety of different price points — from basic budget-friendly picks readily available on Amazon to luxury options with high-end Sunbrella fabric, teak frames, and unique designs.

To choose the best ones, we assembled each umbrella according to the manufacturer’s instructions. We timed how long this took from start to finish and noted any confusing instructions in the manuals. Next, we left the umbrellas outside in different weather conditions including sun, wind and rain (both light and heavy thunderstorms), taking into account overall durability, ease of operation, portability, and any special features.

Photo by: Brigitt Earley

Brigitt Earley

Finally, we looked at how much shade the umbrellas provided at different times of day. We also spot-cleaned each pick to get a sense of how long they’d stay in tip-top shape. The best patio umbrellas were the most durable, easy to set up and maintain and had a pleasing aesthetic in our backyard testing space.

$199.99 $249.95
Amazon
What We Like
  1. Easy to assemble
  2. Thicker shade
  3. Tilt operates effortlessly
What We Don't Like
  1. Doesn't come with a base
  2. Topper is plastic

Our tests prove that it’s difficult to find a solid patio umbrella — one that’s both durable and attractive — at a budget-friendly price point. But this umbrella, offered at what we’d consider a mid-tier price point, delivered on nearly all fronts. The 9-foot canopy has a three-layer design that makes it look a little bit more elevated than your average market style. We also particularly liked the acrylic performance fabric, which was decidedly thicker than the more budget-friendly umbrellas we evaluated. This not only helps with overall aesthetic, but also makes the umbrella more functional — it more readily shades the space.

The umbrella comes in three pieces: a long pole, a frame with an attached canopy, and a decorative topper. The whole thing comes together in less than 60 seconds — just pop the three parts together and insert it into a stand. On the downside, the decorative topper is made from a flimsy plastic that’s prone to scratches and other damage. We also wish the listing gave you the option to purchase a matching base.

On the upside, the umbrella operates beautifully. The crank is easy to turn, so you’ll have the umbrella up and ready to go (or down for storage) in a flash. The tilt function works well, too. The button isn’t too high, depresses without getting stuck, and can tilt both left and right. Overall, this is a solid umbrella that we confidently recommend.

  1. Style Market
  2. Material Acrylic performance fabric (canopy); alloy steel (frame)
  3. Diameter 9 ft.
  4. Height 8.3 ft.
  5. Weight 12 lbs
  6. Tilt Yes
$50
Amazon
What We Like
  1. Can buy it with the base
  2. Easy to assemble
What We Don't Like
  1. Base isn't as sturdy as we'd like
  2. Fabric is on the thinner side

Considering the price, it’s hard to find much to complain about. Overall, the umbrella is tall and large enough to provide ample shade — and it looks pretty good getting the job done. We like that the umbrella comes in a variety of colors, from a more muted tan to a bold lime. We only wish the fabric was more canvas-like. It’s on the thinner side and it’s got a bit of a sheen to it, which makes it look less luxe than our overall pick. Still, you do get pretty good shade — even on very sunny days.

Assembly was a breeze. Just click the bottom pole and the top frame together and insert it into the base. We loved the fact that this umbrella could be purchased with a coordinating base — it’s both a convenience and a style factor. The base could be sturdier though.

Overall, this umbrella is easy to operate via a simple hand crank. It tilts both left and right, too, though the button is stickier than the one on the EliteShade, which complicates the process ever-so-slightly. All in all, you probably can’t expect this umbrella to last quite as long as our top pick, but it presents an excellent overall value.

  1. Style Market
  2. Material Polyester (canopy); powder-coated steel (frame)
  3. Diameter 10 ft.
  4. Height 8.1 ft.
  5. Weight 19 lbs
  6. Tilt Yes
$399.99
Amazon
What We Like
  1. Great coverage
  2. Very sturdy
  3. High-quality fabric
What We Don't Like
  1. Harder to assemble

Our tester loved everything about this umbrella, calling it a “serious contender” for our top overall spot. In the end, we decided it wasn’t “the one,” only because of how large it is. The base is exceptionally bulky, and the 11-foot canopy is extensive, so it won’t fit all outdoor spaces. If you have the room, though, you’ll be pleased with this pick — especially because it’s not nearly as expensive as many other cantilevered styles out there.

“If you can tuck the base out of the way, this is a very attractive umbrella,” our tester said. The pole has a sleek, curved design and the shade looks luxe. We especially like that the polyester is on the thicker side, which not only looks higher quality, but also delivers better shade. We loved how easy the umbrella was to adjust, too — even despite its heft. You’ll have no trouble blocking the sun from whatever angle you need.

The umbrella isn’t going anywhere, either. The base holds 330 pounds of sand and 44 pounds of water to keep it in place. With some effort, you can still move it around your patio, thanks to a set of two wheels. Just plan for some extra time to set this one up — it was the most complicated of any others we evaluated, requiring two people and about 25 minutes.

  1. Style Cantilever
  2. Material Polyester (canopy); aluminum (frame); plastic (base)
  3. Diameter 11 ft.
  4. Height Not listed
  5. Weight 69.7 lbs
  6. Tilt N/A
$99.99 $84.98
Amazon
What We Like
  1. Built-in lights
  2. Easy to assemble
What We Don't Like
  1. Fabric is on the thinner side
  2. Tilt button is a bit too high up

Another great overall value, it’s almost impossible to believe you can get a feature-packed patio umbrella at this price point, but this option proves it’s possible. The 10-foot umbrella has ample coverage area — we had no trouble shading a spot big enough for a dining table — plus has a tilt feature for even more flexibility. What really sets it apart, though, is the fact that it comes with built-in LED lights. They’re not as bright as dedicated lights. You can’t use them to comfortably read under, but they’re suitable for eating and adding ambiance. They’re also easy to set up—simply unscrew the solar panel at the top and plug in the little cord. When you want the lights on, flip the switch on the pole of the umbrella.

Opening and closing the umbrella is just as easy via a hand crank. To tilt it left or right, just press the button. In our evaluations, our tester — a woman who is 5 feet 6 inches — noted the button was a little higher than she’d like. She had to stand on her toes, which complicated the process. We also think the polyester fabric could be more canvas-like. Instead, it was closer to that of our budget-friendly pick — thinner and a little bit shiny.

  1. Style Market
  2. Material Polyester (canopy); steel (frame)
  3. Diameter 10 ft.
  4. Height 8 ft.
  5. Weight 14.2 lbs
  6. Tilt Yes
$54.99
Amazon
What We Like
  1. Easy to assemble
  2. Lightweight
  3. Attractive design
What We Don't Like
  1. Fabric is on the thinner side

Sunnyglade’s 9-foot umbrella is another example of a great budget-friendly option. The first thing you notice about the umbrella is the attractive blue and white striped design. It looks like something you might see at a hotel pool or at a restaurant on the coast. And even when the fabric got a bit dirty, we were able to easily spot clean with a damp cloth and some hose water. Unfortunately, the fabric is thinner, and sun filters through the white part, so keep that in mind if your goal is serious shade.

Still, there’s plenty to love, like an easy to assemble design. Just pop the two pieces together. The hand crank lifts the umbrella up and open in a flash, too. And we didn’t have any trouble with the tilt button — it easy depressed, so you could tilt the umbrella left or right to block the sun as needed. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with a matching stand nor give you the option to purchase one separately.

  1. Style Market
  2. Material Polyester (canopy); powder-coated aluminum (frame)
  3. Diameter 9 ft.
  4. Height Not listed
  5. Weight 11.35 lbs
  6. Tilt Yes
From $712 (reg. $949)
Frontgate
What We Like
  1. Very high-quality fabric
  2. A lot of options for customization
  3. Easy to assemble
What We Don't Like
  1. Very expensive
  2. Doesn't come with a stand

Comparatively, this patio umbrella is very expensive. But if style is your priority, we’re here to tell you this one is a worthy splurge. For starters, the umbrella is highly customizable, so you can essentially create the perfect option for your space. Choose from seven different frame materials — variously-colored metals and others teak — and 17 fabrics, including solids and stripes. Each one has a fun and attractive scalloped design complete with fringe.

Beyond style, you get what you pay for. The acrylic Sunbrella fabric is the thickest of all the umbrellas we evaluated and looks like a nice, sturdy canvas. It also provides ample shade (even the blue and white striped one we tested) and resists water and dirt well. We did notice a few small dirt patches after a week outside, but it hosed off easily — no scrubbing required.

The umbrella opens and closes with ease. It also has a tilt function that performs as it should. It’s easy to reach and, in tests, the button never got stuck. The biggest downside? For this price, we’d expect the umbrella to come with a stand.

  1. Style Market
  2. Material Acrylic Sunbrella (canopy); aluminum or natural teak (frame)
  3. Diameter 9 ft.
  4. Height 8 ft.
  5. Weight 25 lbs (aluminum); 32 lbs (natural teak)
  6. Tilt Yes (aluminum); No (teak)

What to Consider Before Buying a Patio Umbrella

  • Size: Patio umbrellas come in a range of sizes, often from 5 feet to 11 feet, sometimes even larger. You should always measure your space and consider what your coverage goals are before settling on a size. In general, we recommend styles between 8 and 10 feet for your average dining table that seats somewhere between four and six adults. For just a chair or two and a side table, you may only need a 6- or 7-foot umbrella; on the other hand, you may need something 11 feet or more for a large dining table that seats eight or a lounging area with a sofa.
  • Your Space: For larger spaces, we recommend cantilever styles. Though they’re bulkier than market umbrellas, their offset design keeps the pole and base out of the way, allowing for easier conversation. They also tend to provide great coverage and can be better adjusted to block the sun. For smaller spaces, market styles are generally preferred, as they have a smaller footprint, are readily available, and tend to be more budget friendly.
  • Mechanics: Most patio umbrellas have a hand crank that makes them exceptionally easy to operate. Simply wind the umbrella up or down. Others have a pulley system that secures by placing the attached pin through the pole, but we find these are generally heavier and more difficult to handle. Umbrellas that tilt often do so with a simple push button, but note that some users — particularly more petite individuals — complain these buttons can be too high to easily reach.
  • Setup: Market umbrellas are much easier to set up than their cantilevered counterparts. In our tests, all the market umbrellas we tested took less than 5 minutes to set up — most were complete in about 60 seconds. You just pop the frame and attached canopy onto a longer pole, then insert it into a stand. Cantilevered styles weren’t necessarily difficult to set up, but the process was much more time-consuming (15 to 20 minutes) and was best performed with two people.

FAQs

What’s the best patio umbrella style?

The most common type of patio umbrella is a market umbrella, the kind that sits atop a long pole you insert into a separate stand. Eight out of the 10 models we tested were market umbrellas. Cantilever umbrellas are another popular choice and rounded out the group of umbrellas we tested. These umbrellas, though a bit bulkier, have an arched design that allows you to place them off to the side and still get ample coverage.

What’s the best patio umbrella size?

The best patio umbrella size is one that fits comfortably in your space. Before shopping around, it’s important to measure your space and determine what you’re hoping to cover. In general, patio umbrellas come with canopies ranging from 5 feet to 11 feet, sometimes even larger. We recommend styles between 8 and 10 feet for your average dining table that seats somewhere between four and six adults.

How do I wash a patio umbrella?

Most patio umbrellas should be spot-cleaned as necessary. You can typically do this with your average garden hose. For stubborn spots, you may want to use a little clear dish soap and a sponge or brush. In some cases, the canopy may be machine-washable, but note that it can be complicated to slip the fabric on and off the frame. We never recommend using something as powerful as a power washer, since this could compromise the integrity of the fabric.

Can I leave my patio umbrella outside all year long?

Though patio umbrellas are designed to withstand all kinds of weather, we don’t recommend leaving them outside all year long if you live in a climate that’s subject to extreme temperatures. To extend the overall usable lifespan of your patio umbrella, secure it and pack it up for the winter, storing it in an area (like a garage or shed) that’s shielded from harsh elements.

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