A cantilever parasol is essentially a giant umbrella, usually placed over seating areas in the garden to provide shade and protection from the rain. They are incredibly popular and can be found in many gardens throughout the UK.
A big advantage that cantilever parasols have over more traditional garden umbrellas is that they’re freestanding, which means they don’t get in the way.
With a regular garden umbrella, you’d need to have a hole in the middle of a table where they can be placed; thankfully you don’t have this worry with a cantilever parasol.
We’ve rated some of the best cantilever parasols currently available in the UK, going over their key features as well as looking at their pros and cons. After working through the list, you should have a good idea of which parasol is right for you.
Last update on 2020-04-01 / Affiliate links / Images / Pricing from Amazon Product Advertising API
Let’s first look at our best pick, the Christow Square Lever Parasol…
A stylish and high-quality parasol
The Christow Square Lever Parasol combines great looks with a very practical design.
The pole is made from aluminium and has a crank handle, which makes it very easy to open and close the canopy. The canopy itself is made from M2 polyester, which means you get excellent protection from the sun.
You’re able to tilt the canopy 360 degrees, so you can get protection from the sun no matter where it is in the sky. The diameter of the canopy is 2.5M, providing plenty of protection where it’s used.
You can get this parasol in a choice of three colours – cream, grey and taupe. You can also choose from either a square or round design, depending on your preference.
It’s worth noting that you don’t get the base included for the price, as is often the case with cantilever parasols. Other than this though, it’s a superb quality product and would make an excellent choice for most gardens.
- Comes in a range of colours to match the style of your garden
- The frame and canopy are made from high-quality materials
- The foot pedal makes it very easy to rotate the canopy as you need
- The canopy can be tilted up to 45 degrees to provide protection from low lying sun in the evenings
- The base doesn’t come included and will need to be bought separately
A sturdy and reliable parasol at a great price
The Greenbay 3M Banana Parasol is our value pick and is perfect if you’re looking to get some shade in your garden without breaking the bank.
The canopy is 3M in diameter, providing a good amount of coverage and it’s made from M2 polyester fabric, so you don’t have to worry about the sun when you’re sat under it.
The crank on the side of the pole makes it very easy to lower and raise the canopy as well as changing the angle of the umbrella, so you create shade exactly where you need it.
Just like the Christow parasol, you will need to buy the base separately, so you should take this into account when thinking about your budget. Although this is quite a sturdily made parasol, it’s still not a good idea to leave it outside on very windy days.
You can choose from five different colours for the canopy – wine, black, cream, green or coffee. You can also purchase a cover it, which is never a bad idea since polyester canopy covers can easily develop mildew on them when stored in the winter without one.
- Very affordable yet still made to a high quality
- Comes in five different colours, so you can easily pick one that matches the style of your garden
- Very easy to set up and adjust the angle of the umbrella
- Provides good protection from the sun thanks to the M2 polyester canopy
- Not quite as sturdy as some other more expensive parasols
- The base will need to be purchased separately
A great alternative to parasols that require a base
If you are looking for a wall-mounted parasol then this offering from Norfolk Leisure is certainly worth considering.
The canopy itself is made from 220g polyester and can be easily opened or closed using the crank handle. At 2m, it’s on the smaller side but still provides enough cover for smaller outdoor seating/dining areas.
The fact that it’s wall-mounted has its pros and cons…
It does of course mean that you’ll need to have the area you want to cover near to a wall. It also means that once it’s attached to the wall, you won’t be able to take it off to store unless you want to unscrew it. However, this isn’t necessarily an issue providing you get a cover for it.
The upsides are that it’s very convenient to put up and down, with nothing to move and no heavy base required. The fact that it doesn’t require means you can save money too since most of the time they need to be bought separately.
- There’s no need to buy a base for it, which are often quite costly
- Extremely easy to open and close once it’s attached to the wall
- The high-quality polyester material for the canopy provides good protection from sun and rain
- The fact that it needs to be wall-mounted means it won’t be suitable for every garden
- You won’t be able to store it during winter unless you remove it from the wall completely
An affordable parasol that gets the job done
This parasol has a 3M diameter, so it’s suitable for providing cover for decent-sized outdoor seating/dining areas. The 8 ribs that run across the canopy cover support it very well and the cover itself is made from high-quality terylene fabrics, providing excellent shelter from sun and rain.
It’s very easy to put this canopy up and down by using the crank handle on the side of the pole. The pole is made from powder-coated iron.
As with many freestanding cantilever parasols, you will need to buy a base for this separately. If you don’t want to spend the money on a base though, you can also use sandbags or weight plates to keep it stable.
It comes in four different colours – red wine, black, cream and green.
It’s worth mentioning that some reviewers weren’t happy with the quality of this parasol and reported that it snapped after a few uses. A few reviewers also mentioned that the customer service wasn’t great. This is certainly worth bearing in mind if you’re considering this parasol.
- Comes in a range of attractive colours
- Made from M2 terylene fabrics, meaning you get excellent protection from the sun as well as the rain
- The 3M diameter of the canopy cover means you get a good amount of shade from this parasol
- The build quality isn’t the best compared to some of the other parasols on this list
- Some reviewers were unhappy with the customer service they received
An easy-to-use parasol with plenty of colour options
The Home Detail Cantilever Hanging Garden Banana Parasol is the last parasol we’re going to look at and it has quite a bit going for it.
The canopy comes in one of four colours – black, beige, tan or red. You can also get it with a canopy size of either 3m or 3.5m, depending on the amount of coverage you need.
You can very easily fold this away to store as you need, but to set it up you will need to have something to weight it down. You can either buy a proper base, which attaches to the star-shaped feet; or you can simply use weights or sandbags.
It’s very easy to set up, with the only assembly required being to attach the pieces of the base together and then attach the umbrella to the pole. Putting it up and down is very simple too by using the handle on the side.
Overall, this would make a good choice of parasol for most gardens, providing you have space and don’t mind spending the extra money on a base (if you don’t have anything to weigh it down with).
- The canopy cover provides excellent protection from UV rays as well as the rain
- You can choose from four different colours to fit in with the style of your garden
- It’s very easy to put up and down and can also be titled to provide protection from low lying sun
- Some reviewers found the build quality to be less than satisfactory
- If you want to purchase a proper base, then it will bump the price up quite a bit
How Does A Cantilever Parasol Work?
Cantilever parasols are quite simple in their construction. They normally consist of a frame, a base and the parasol cover. The weighted base helps to keep the parasol stable, with the cover providing protection from the elements. Not all cantilever parasols come with a base however, with some being wall mounted that you screw directly into decking or a wall.
The ribs across the canopy cover help to provide stability and to put them up and down, it’s usually just a case of using a crank handle on the pole.
What Are the Benefits of Owning a Cantilever Parasol?
If you’re considering purchasing a cantilever parasol, then you might be weighing up the pros and cons to see if it’s worth the investment.
Below are some of the main benefits that a cantilever parasol provides –
- You can use it to create shade anywhere you want in your garden
- A good parasol can help to add a touch of style and class to a garden
- Will eliminate the risk of sunburn when you’re sitting under it
- Creates a comfortable atmosphere for guests
- Will help your drinks to stay cool during hot weather
What Materials Are Cantilever Parasols Made From?
The materials used for both the frame and cover are important. Generally, aluminium is the best material for the frame, due to being sturdy and weatherproof.
When it comes parasol covers, they’re usually made from polyester. This is mostly due to it being weatherproof and hard-wearing. You can also get acrylic covers though, which have benefits such as being stain-resistance and mould-resistant as well as the colour lasting longer. Acrylic covers tend to cost more than polyester.
How To Clean A Garden Parasol
Over time, parasols will get dirty, so you’ll certainly want to clean yours to keep it looking at its best.
It’s never recommended that you try to machine wash a parasol cover and in fact you should never try to remove the cover from the frame to begin with. Instead you should wash it by hand with warm, soapy water and a sponge or cloth.
To get started you should fill a bucket with warm water and add in a little washing up liquid. Then dip your sponge or cloth in the water and carefully go over the entire cover.
After you’ve finished washing it, you’ll need to leave it standing for a good while in the sun, so it has time to dry completely. You should never put a parasol cover away in the garage when it’s still wet, as this will cause it to develop mould.
Cleaning a parasol isn’t particularly difficult, you just need to make sure you take your time and if you notice any mildew then it’s a good idea to add a bit of white vinegar to the water to help remove it.
The best time to clean a parasol would be just before you put it away for winter.
It is possible to get a cantilever parasol cleaned professionally but this usually isn’t necessary.