If you are in the market for a heavy duty grade of gazebo you will have no doubt came across many configurations of leg size, legs gauge, joint type and steel or aluminium structure. It is without doubt quite a lot of information and difficult to compare products like for like to ensure your purchase will match your expectations. With this guide we aim to start a conversation on which type of structure is better suited to your requirements: aluminium or steel?

Firstly, it is important that your new heavy duty gazebo is strong enough to withstand windy conditions, it is fully waterproof (otherwise what’s the point?) and it blocks harmful UV rays.

Both aluminium and steel gazebos have their uses, light recreational use would typically suit a steel gazebo where heavier, more often use would suit an aluminium gazebo due the strength and durability advantage. We will discuss the following points to allow you to form your own opinion on what type of gazebo is better suited for you.

1: Strength & Durability

2: Rust resistance            

3: Type of Use

4: Warranty & Aftercare


Strength & Durability

Due to aluminium being significantly less dense than steel we can have a larger volume of aluminium in the structure to create a greater strength profile. The result of this is Poptents aluminium heavy duty gazebos use 2mm thick aluminium throughout all bars. As steel is much heavier than aluminium it means steel construction gazebos need to save weight, which as a result means a steel structure will have thinner construction, usually 1mm or 1.2mm. It also means that an aluminium gazebo is more manageable when transporting across events or moving in and out of storage.

With thicker gauge bars across an aluminium pop up gazebo it means a Poptent gazebo can withstand stronger wind conditions, more frequent use and be more reliable across its life. This applies to everyday use where it is erected and left up, or it is required to be put up and down daily for trade us as an example.


Rust Resistance

There are different types of rust resistance for your pop up gazebo depending on your metal. Steel has a powder coat treatment while aluminium is anodized.

Anodizing is an electro-chemical process that coverts the metal surface to a decorative, durable and corrosion resistant surface. This is achieved by immersing in an acid electrolyte bath and passing a current through the medium.

On the contrary, steel is a secondary process usually through powder coating. It is achieved through heat and an electrostatic charge. As it is a secondary treatment it can be chipped or flake off which allows the rust to take hold.

Type of Use

The strength of gazebo you require will depend on the type and amount of use you will require it for in addition to the conditions you expect it to withstand. With lighter weight steel construction you should expect light domestic use as and when required. We wouldn’t expect steel gazebos to be left standing for long periods or to be left up in windier conditions.

With an aluminium gazebo you can leave it up for many months at a time providing it is well secured and you keep an eye on the forecast for any storms or wind warnings. The Poptents aluminium structures can also withstand going up and down daily where reliable use is required such as at market events or tradesmen who rely on shelter.

Warranty & Aftercare

Steel gazebos typically come with a 12 month warranty. Poptents provide a two year warranty on our aluminium heavy duty gazebo frames. This adds to give an extra piece of mind that your structure is protected for longer. In the unlikely event where you do require any parts/spares Poptents do keep a comprehensive range of all structural parts in stock to get your gazebo back up and running with as few parts as possible.