Patio Construction

The Best Patio Materials for Hot Climates

If you live in a hot climate, it’s important to choose the right material for your patio. Not only will you want the surface to be durable and easy to maintain, you’ll also want to be sure that it’s not too hot to walk on in the heat of the summer months. So let’s begin with some materials that are definitely NOT the best choices for hot climates:

  • Vinyl – When it comes to desirable materials for patios, vinyl does fit one criterion: it’s definitely low maintenance. On the downside, it’s pricey. And vinyl actually absorbs the heat, which makes it uncomfortable to walk on barefoot in the summer months. So vinyl is not the answer for patios in hot climates.
  • Composite – This imitation wood product has become increasingly popular over the past several years. While it’s true that it’s durable and low maintenance, composite materials can absorb heat in much the same way as vinyl. And it has a tendency to fade in bright sunlight. Although you may like the appearance of composite, it’s not the best choice for hot climates.
    Now that you know which materials NOT to choose, let’s talk briefly about some of the best choices for patios in hot climates:
  • Wood – If you prefer a deck over a traditional patio, natural wood is a good choice. It’s comfortable to walk barefoot on wood even in the hottest summer months. And, without a doubt, a wood deck is beautiful when it’s first installed. The problem with wood is that the like-new appearance is short-lived. Wood very quickly fades in bright sunlight if it’s not adequately treated. And you’ll have to maintain your wooden deck by applying a protective stain at least once a year. Wood is also susceptible to insects like termites. And no matter how diligent you are in taking care of your wood deck, it won’t last nearly as long as other materials.
  • Concrete – You may be surprised to learn that one of the best choices for a patio material in hot climates is concrete. There are several reasons why this is true. Concrete is comfortable to walk on, even at the hottest time of year, because it doesn’t conduct or absorb heat the way some other materials do. Concrete is most definitely durable, often lasting for many, many years before needing to be replaced. And, finally, concrete is low maintenance, needing only an occasional coat of sealant to protect the surface.

For more information about concrete patios, talk to a local paving contractor. You’ll find that concrete comes in a variety of shades and stamped designs, and it’s surprisingly affordable. If you’re looking for the best patio material for a hot climate – remember concrete!