Hardtop vs Soft-Top Gazebo: What’s the Difference? (Which to Get)

In your yard, gazebos are fantastic for offering shade, shelter from the weather, and a relaxed atmosphere!

We can advise you whether to choose a hardtop or Soft-top gazebo if you intend to purchase one but are unsure which to choose. The greatest gazebo will look wonderful on your patio or in your yard while being strong and protected. Your place may benefit from an exquisite outdoor gazebo thanks to the variety of types and sizes offered.

Your home’s value will increase and the whole atmosphere of the outdoors will be improved by adding a new gazebo to the backyard. Both kinds of gazebos have benefits and drawbacks. Your preference will determine the option you select.

Hardtop Vs Soft Top Gazebo: What’re The Differences?

The main difference between a hardtop and a soft-top gazebo is in their state. Hardtops Gazebos provide better safety, stability, and insulation against rain/stars (or other elements), they can be customized to suit your needs with added attachments like screens or shades for privacy purposes; while Soft Top Gazebos allow you more options when comes down portability as well because there isn’t an entire layer hiding what’s inside, which means less weight!

Let’s discuss these two types of material further to understand how they differ from each other deeply so as not to make any mistakes when building yours at home later down this road together.

Soft-Top Gazebo

Soft-Top Gazebo
Credit: walmart.ca

The majority of soft-top gazebos are composed of fabric. They come in many different styles and hues. Although this kind of gazebo is less expensive, it is not as sturdy as a hard-top gazebo.

  1. Soft fabric makes up the majority of soft-top gazebos.
  2. They provide good sun protection, making them perfect for outdoor use.
  3. This kind of gazebo is collapsible, portable, and light.
  4. Because you can carry it anywhere, this kind is perfect for travel.
  5. Additionally, a soft-top gazebo adds beauty and drama to a garden’s entrance.





Sunjoy 11×11 ft. Soft Top Gazebo

Sunjoy 11×11 ft. Soft Top Gazebo

Portable & Height Adjustable: This pop up canopy is sturdy, meanwhile, lightweight and portable.

Sunjoy Pendleton 10.5 x 13 ft. 2-Tier Steel Gazebo

Tan and brown weather-resistant fabric and screen. Rust-resistant powder-coated brown steel frame


1. Stylish

If you’re searching for a design that will suit your desire, there are many different colors and patterns of soft-top gazebos from which to choose. Due to their ability to mix in well with gardens and yards, these gazebos are ideal for a variety of events.

In the same way, in most cases, People also want to know How to Decorate a Pop-Up Gazebo, So, in this short Guide, I’ll teach you.

2. Simple to assemble and move

Canopies on certain soft-top gazebos may be taken down in case of rain or inclement weather. They can be folded since they are constructed of a supple, lightweight material. They are portable and are good for travel.

Read More: Gazebo vs Canopy

3. Less Costly

In general, soft-top gazebos cost less than hard-top gazebos. This is a result of the lower cost of their resources.

4. Easily Maintained

These gazebos are incredibly simple to keep up with. They don’t need paint because they aren’t constructed of sturdy materials like metal. They may be cleaned by washing the canopy’s material.


1. Possibility Of Damage

As soft-top gazebos are primarily made of fabric, rain or moisture might ultimately cause harm, even to water-resistant models.

Additionally, they are frequently not sturdy enough to withstand harm caused by heavy winds.

2. Cannot Block The Heat

On a hot day, a soft-top gazebo can offer shade, but it cannot block the sun. A soft-top gazebo’s material is less heat-resistant than a hard-top gazebo’s material.

Soft-top gazebos aren’t the solution if you’re seeking for an outdoor structure that can offer shade while shielding you from the sun.

3. Not Robust Or Resistant

These are the soft-top gazebo’s primary disadvantages. They aren’t as strong or durable as the other varieties, although being less expensive. They are not travel-friendly and avoid taking them to snowy areas.

Hardtop Gazebo

Hardtop Gazebos
Credit: kdvr.com

Aluminum or metal is frequently used to make hard-top gazebos. Due to their durability, they are the finest option for severe rain protection. They can withstand moisture damage as well.

  1. They are more costly than soft-top gazebos, though.
  2. The hard-top gazebo is one of the most desirable sheds that homeowners wish to possess nowadays.
  3. Typically, they are made of metal or aluminum.





Sunjoy 11×11 ft. Soft Top Gazebo

Sunjoy Chapman Hardtop Gazebo

Light Up Your Outdoor Patio: Ceiling hook is provided for suspending lighting (not included) to illuminate your evening gatherings.

Backyard Discovery Saxony Wooden Grill Gazebo

Fits Most Grills: Large footprint fits a range of grills up to 70″ wide.


1. Durable

Durability is one of the main benefits of utilizing a hard-top gazebo. These gazebos can endure heavy winds since they are built of metal or aluminum.

In this case, read my guide on How to Hang lights on Metal Gazebo? or learn about How to Anchor a Gazebo.

2. Not Affected By Weather

Owning a hard-top gazebo means you won’t have to worry about strong winds, torrential rain, or even snow. These weather conditions won’t harm their materials in any way. They can withstand moisture damage as well.

3. Stunning Appearance

Similar to the soft-top gazebo, this kind is available in a variety of hues and patterns to match the look you’re going for. To get the desired aesthetic, you can paint them.


1. Expensive

Soft-top gazebos cost less than hard-top gazebos. This is so that they can be more expensive than cloth soft-top gazebos because of the material needed to make them. If money is tight, hard-top gazebos are not the best option.

2. Not Suitable for Travel

Hard-top gazebos are often stationary. They are erected in a specific position since, unlike the soft-top kind, they are not transportable and collapsible. To make sure they can survive strong winds, some homeowners even place them on cement.

What about the differences and similarities they share? Let us have a look at them as well!

Soft-Top vs Hardtop Gazebo: Which one is Better for Your Needs?

HardTop Gazebo SoftTop Gazebo
More costly than gazebos with soft tops Less expensive than hard-top gazebos
More substantial and challenging to install Less heavy and simpler to install
Are more resilient and lasting Not as strong or long-lasting as gazebos with hard tops
It may be challenging to locate replacement components. Finding replacement components is simpler
Increase the level of sun, wind, and rain protection. Lessen the level of sun, wind, and rain protection.

1. Sun Protection

Hardtop gazebos are not only built to withstand rain, but they also provide excellent sun protection. The strong roof keeps the building’s interior cool and pleasant by reflecting heat and obstructing the entry of sunlight and ultraviolet radiation.

However, soft top Gazebos cannot be compared to one another. Although the material used for this form of roof has some ability to partially prevent sunlight from reaching the inside, they do not have the same level of heat-repellency as those used for hardtops.

2. Stability and Strength

Depending on the construction material & sturdiness, a hardtop gazebo can securely support 600 to 2,400 lbs of snow at a time while keeping you safe below.

Soft-top gazebos lack strength. They are so weak and unstable that it is advised to get rid of them before the beginning of the snowy season. It cannot sustain the weight of the snow; thus, it will fall soon.

3. Quality

Gazebos with hardtops have longer lifespans. Hardtop gazebos are built with a robust and sturdy design, which boosts their endurance by ensuring exceptional stability. They won’t wobble and tumble in high winds and will stay put in your outdoor space.

Typically, the roofs of soft-top gazebos are constructed from lighter materials. They are therefore not resilient enough to withstand wind or storms. In a strong wind, there is a considerable chance that your gazebo may be destroyed.

4. Maintenance

When talking about maintenance, we must emphasize that a hardtop gazebo needs virtually minimal care. This roof was built using robust, solid, and long-lasting materials, and it also has a baked enamel coating to prevent wear and tear from happening quickly or easily.

Soft-top gazebos are likewise low maintenance, but they will decay more quickly than hard-top gazebos. Soft-top gazebos are prone to rips and deteriorate with time in the sun.

5- Waterproof Features

One type of gazebo that offers excellent waterproof protection is the hardtop gazebo. These structures are made with solid construction and often have a baked enamel coating that prevents water from entering the framework. This makes them ideal for rainy or snowy weather, as they won’t leak or expose you to the elements.

Another option is a soft top gazebo, which can also provide some protection from the rain. However, these structures may not be as effective at keeping water out over time, as the fabric can suffer from wear and tear and may eventually allow water or snow to enter the gazebo.

Hardtop Vs Soft Top Gazebo: What're The Differences?

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1). Which gazebo type is better, a hardtop or a soft top?

Your requirements and tastes will determine how. A hardtop gazebo is indeed a wonderful option if you want a gazebo that is more resilient and provides greater weather protection.
A soft top gazebo might be a better choice if you’re searching for something less costly and simpler to erect.

2). Are hardtop gazebos a good investment?

Hardtop gazebos give additional protection against the wind, and rain, therefore they are unquestionably worth the money. In comparison to soft top gazebos, they are also more robust and survive longer.

3). How durable are soft-top Gazebos?

The typical lifespan of a soft-top gazebo is between two and three years. They aren’t as long-lasting as hardtop gazebos, but they are simpler to erect and have more design and color possibilities.

4). Do hard-top gazebos work well?

Because they give additional shelter from the sunlight, wind, and rain, hard-top gazebos are appropriate. In comparison to soft top gazebos, they are also more robust and survive longer.


While talking about Hardtop vs Soft-top Gazebo, both have advantages and disadvantages. Both are fashionable and provide good sun protection. They may also be used for any occasion because they provide a quick location for small gatherings.

Before selecting a gazebo, there are certain things to think about. Consider your requirements, the environment, and your financial situation. You will make the final choice.

Hardtop gazebos offer several benefits, including durability, security, and protection. If you wanted to add a structure to your yard but weren’t on a tight budget, a hardtop gazebo might be your best bet.

Although purchasing a soft top gazebo is preferable if you are a tenant since you can move the gazebo with you.

Reference Source: 

Hard Top or Soft Top Gazebo


Hard vs soft top gazebo


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