LESLIE: Sonya in Illinois needs some help with a pergola. What can we do for you?
SONYA: Hi. My husband recently built a pergola on the back of our home and I was wondering if you have any suggestions as to what we could use on two sides to make it a bit more private and to give some protection from the western setting sun and also what would a preferred stain method be.
TOM: What did you build it out of? It’s out of wood?
SONYA: Pressure-treated pine.
TOM: OK. Good. Well, first I would start with the staining of the wood. Behr has a line of premium wood stains and finishes that just came out under a new formulation that’s 100-percent acrylic and they really stand up to the weather quite well. And the application is just so much easier now because it’s an acrylic base. So you might want to take a look at that. There’s a bazillion colors that it comes in. And you want to get that on first.
Now, in terms of blocking some of the sun, Leslie, I think she could probably do something with sailcloth for that, couldn’t she?
LESLIE: Yeah, there’s actually – there’s a company – and I’m completely spacing on the name right now – but they manufacture a tracking system that goes on top of the – I don’t know if you would call them joists but the boards that are on the roof of the pergola.
SONYA: Yep, on the support beams.
LESLIE: It sort of would sit on the top edge of that so you don’t see it. And then it runs on those two tracks, panels, of fabric.
LESLIE: So that when you want it open, there’s a stick; you just slide it all the way back and it’s open. And then when you want to close it for sun or get rid of the sun, give yourself more shade, you just grab that stick and slide it across and it becomes like a smooth, full panel of fabric. That’s a great way to add privacy. I’m sure a quick internet search will point you in the right direction of the company that I'm completely forgetting right now.
LESLIE: But also, if you look into outdoor fabrics – like Sunbrella is a great manufacturer and they can – you know, you can buy Sunbrella buy the yardage or even by premade, exterior draperies and just put curtain rods up on the side panels that you want to create the draperies on for privacy; you know, put a full, long, curtain rod that you can completely then close with your drapes.
LESLIE: And otherwise, you just have them secured to the side and then you can tie them to the support posts so that they’re not blowing around in the wind when they’re not closed.
SONYA: Right. OK. That’s a great idea. Well, thank you so much.
TOM: You’re welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.