Patio umbrellas are extremely useful patio accessories, providing shade from the sun, protection from the rain, and helping to form a comforting little micro-climate underneath their canopy. Whether they are used in conjunction with a patio dining table or on their own, they create visual interest and signify places of serenity. They must, however, be properly weighted down! Patio umbrellas vary significantly in price, dimensions, and build qualities, and it can be difficult to figure out the proper market umbrella stand weight to use in different circumstances.
Tables provide a second point of support to those umbrellas used in conjunction with a table. This additional support takes some of the emphasis off of the base weight, but these patio umbrellas still need a base weight as well. If the weight is insufficient, the umbrella may take the table down with it — and any dishes or glasses on the table will be shattered!
The goal of this guide is to clarify all of this and to give a better sense of what you will need in order to keep your umbrella pointing in the right direction, and free of damage.
Wind is the Enemy
When it gets windy enough, no matter the weight, a patio umbrella will collapse. Wind power can be difficult to judge, as much depends on individual circumstances. If your umbrella is placed in a generally windy location, such as between two buildings where wind tunnels, you’ll have to be significantly more cautious about opening and closing the umbrella than you would be if your umbrella is placed in a relatively calm, sheltered area.
We suggest you start out being cautious with your umbrella and folding it up whenever it is not in use. Get used to the way it reacts to wind gusts of varying speeds during the time you’re using it. In general, it never hurts to take the umbrella down, and if it’s getting too windy for you to sit outside comfortably, it’s best to fold up the umbrella as well.
Also, if you’re in a windy area, you may want to consider getting a fiberglass rib umbrella, as these are especially wind-resistant.
How Much Weight Do I Need For My Umbrella Base?
The major issue to be concerned with when choosing the right weighted base for your patio or market umbrella is the amount of weight needed. We have created this simple chart to illustrate the requirements for weighted bases.
Patio Umbrella Base Weight Requirements
|Patio Umbrella Size||25lb Weight Base Without Table||25 lb Weight Base With Table||50lb Weight Base Without Table||50 lb Weight Base With Table||Cantilever Umbrella Base or Supplemental Base Weight|
|6' Diameter or Less||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Not Necessary|
|7' Diameter||No||Not Recommended||Yes||Yes||Not Necessary|
|8' Diameter||No||Not Recommended||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|9' Diameter||No||Not Recommended||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|10' Diameter||No||No||Not Recommended||Yes||Yes|
Now that you know the approximate weight you’ll need, take a look at our patio umbrella base weight reviews and pick out the right base for your needs.
If you’re using your patio umbrella with a table, you may want to consider picking up a patio umbrella cone to get that point as secure as possible, as well!
What if I Have an Oversized Patio Umbrella?
Should you have a large patio umbrella or commercial patio umbrella that spans more than 9′ in diameter, we suggest one of two options: using a supplemental weight bag or using a cantilever umbrella base.
Supplemental Weight Bag
You can use a supplemental weight bag in conjunction with a market umbrella base to add additional weight to support your large format umbrella. These units generally sit on top of the umbrella base, and can supply up to 100 lbs of additional weight!
They come in a variety of shapes and sizes and may be a good solution if you already have a base that is undersized for your needs.
You just need to remember that these can be punctured if you’re not careful, and if they are punctured, you’ll have quite a mess to clean up!
Cantilever Umbrella Base
Many of the cantilever umbrella base weights will work with market umbrellas and can supply up to 125lbs of weight for an umbrella. These weights are sometimes more expensive than traditional patio umbrella bases, but they are highly functional and will work with most patio umbrellas. Cantilever umbrella bases come in a wide variety of designs, from four-piece clover-like systems to water-based weights, to weights that double as planters.
To see what options are available for cantilever umbrella weights, click here.
Other Concerns When Picking The Right Patio Umbrella Base Weight
A few other aspects of patio umbrella bases to consider when shopping for an umbrella base are:
Base weight profile/thickness
Some base weights are fairly thick, sizing in at 6″ plus, while others are very thin plate steel. The thicker umbrella bases may supply more weight, but can be unsightly, and can get in the way of feet or furniture. If the base will be on display, the overall aesthetics and profile are always a concern.
If your umbrella isn’t tied to a table, and you plan to move it around to different parts of a patio, then you will want a base with wheels on it. Finding the right wheeled base that will support the weight you need can be difficult, especially if you have a fairly large diameter umbrella.
Some metal patio umbrella bases are designed in such a way that water is channeled away from the metal, to keep rust concerns to a minimum. If your umbrella base does not have this sort of feature, you may need to keep watch on the material to ensure it is not rusting and ruining the patio itself!
If the paint is peeling from the metal, pick up some all-weather Rustoleum paint to keep it looking fresh.
Umbrella Shaft Size
Conclusion: Umbrella Stand Weights
If you follow the guidelines of this page, you should be all set to ensure your patio umbrella won’t fall over in the middle of a backyard party.
Be sure to look at our reviews of patio umbrella base weights now that you have all the information you need to make the right choice.