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Outdoor News

Pergolas: the Foundation of Your Outdoor Room

April 23rd, 2015

When designing your outdoor living area, it is just as important to define spaces outside as it is inside your home. A pergola can be a great way to define either an outdoor living or dining space, as well as add that extra “wow” to your home. Pergolas are the foundation for your outdoor greatroom and can be that one piece that pulls everything together.

Tuscany Pergola

Many people confuse a pergola with a gazebo or arbor. While they all share similar qualities and can function in many of the same ways, there is a difference. Gazebos are often round or octagonal shaped with a turret for the top. They are generally free standing and have a solid roof.

An arbor is most like a pergola in that it provides shade and can be used for walkways. Arbors also often have open lattice where flowers and plants can grow during the warmer months.

A pergola can be used attached to a home or as a freestanding structure and has open sides and a semi-covered or shaded roof. Pergolas allow light sun and breeze to pass through, and are great for sitting areas to relax outdoors. Adding a fire pit, fireplace, grill, or outdoor kitchen to a pergola is great for every season, and can extend the use and functionality of your outdoor living space. The Outdoor Greatroom Company offers both wood pergolas and fiberglass pergolas to help get your vision started.

Look through our photo gallery to get inspiration for your own outdoor living space!

Spring Maintenance for your Outdoor Room

April 16th, 2015

It’s that time of year again when we come out of winter hibernation and get back to enjoying the great outdoors. To get your outdoor room ready for the season ahead, spring maintenance is a must. Whether your outdoor room has a gas fire pit table, pergola, outdoor furniture, or an outdoor kitchen island, be prepared for spring and summer entertaining with this list of helpful tips!

Pergola with gas fire pit and furniture

Gas Fire Pit Table Maintenance:

  • Clean all loose debris from glass beads and burner
  • Clean all port holes in the burner, making sure no obstructions, i.e. twigs or cobwebs
  • Check all fittings and make sure re-tightened
  • Check all gas lines for any obstructions, i.e. spider cobwebs
  • Make sure any rubber gas lines have not cracked 0r been chewed by animals
  • Check and replace batteries if needed
  • Make sure valve turns freely
  • Remove any loose debris from base of gas fire pit table
  • Confirm gas tank has fuel or if it uses natural gas, the main line is turned on

Outdoor Furniture Maintenance:

  • Brush off any loose dirt from frame & outdoor furniture cushions
  • Prepare a cleaning solution of 1/4 cup mild soap per gallon of warm water (for spot cleaning of cushions, put into spray bottle)
  • Use a sponge or a soft bristle brush to clean frame & outdoor furniture cushions
  • Allow cleaning solution to soak into fabric
  • Rinse thoroughly & let furniture air dry

Outdoor Kitchen Island Maintenance:

  • Clean all loose debris from in and around outdoor kitchen island
  • If there is a fire pit burner built-in, follow Gas Fire Pit Maintenance directions above
  • If refrigerator or other accessories were removed for winter, clean and place back into island
  • If grill is installed, clean as usual and make sure it is working properly
  • Check all fittings and make sure re-tightened
  • Make sure any gas or electrical lines have not been damaged
  • Clean with water and mild soap cleaning solution

Pergola Maintenance:

  • Clear all loose debris from pergola and surrounding area
  • Clean with water (use low pressure power washer if necessary)
  • Wood pergolas may need to be re-stained or resealed every 1-3 years depending on climate

Keeping your outdoor room clean with routine, preventative maintenance will help keep your outdoor room beautiful and last for years to come!

How To Video: Installing a Gas Fire Burner

April 9th, 2015

Setting up a UL listed Crystal Fire Burner from The Outdoor GreatRoom Company is easy and can be done by anyone with the proper tools. Watch Paul explain the process is this short video.

Update: New Colonial Collection Fire Pit Tables

April 2nd, 2015

The customer favorite expands once more!

The Outdoor GreatRoom Company™ is pleased to announce the newly updated Colonial Collection Gas Fire Pit Tables, featuring the brand new Artisan Supercast top and the Absolute Black Granite top.

artisan chat gas fire pit table

The Artisan Colonial top is an acid washed Supercast concrete finish available on three different base heights: chat, dining, and pub. The fiberglass bases are in a Dora Brown finish. Other tops available on a Dora Brown base are: Marbleized Noche Supercast, Mocha Supercast, and British Brown Granite. Mix and match 4 top finishes with 3 base heights.

The Black Grand Colonial is made of durable Absolute Black granite and available as a chat height table on a black fiberglass base.

black grand colonial

Each fire pit table is UL listed for safety and made of durable, yet beautiful materials. This collection is perfect for people who enjoy living their life outdoors and want functional, yet attractive products to do so. The popularity of the dining and pub heights has grown rapidly as consumers are looking to upgrade their outdoor living spaces for more versatile entertaining.

Colonial Collection features include:

  • 48” Tops: British Brown Granite, Mocha Supercast, Artisan Supercast, Absolute Black Granite or Marbleized Noche Supercast
  • Fiberglass Bases: Chat (26” tall), Dining (30” tall), Pub (43” tall)
  • Comes with matching Supercast or granite burner cover
  • Optional Vinyl cover
  • Optional Round Glass Wind Guard
  • Stores 20 lb. LP tank in base
  • UL listed 20” Round Stainless Steel Crystal Fire™ Burner

 

ABOUT THE OUTDOOR GREATROOM COMPANY

The Outdoor GreatRoom Company™ (OGC) manufactures unique, upscale products with design appeal for indoor and outdoor living spaces. Products include gas fire pits and gas fire pit tables, pergolas, outdoor kitchen islands, outdoor gas fireplaces, indoor electric fireplaces, grills, outdoor patio furniture and accessories.

 

 

Invest Your Tax Refund

March 26th, 2015

Sonoma16_41

It’s that time of year again when our accountants are busy and our tax refunds are being given back. While some people choose to save this money or use towards everyday expenses, we like to use it by investing in our homes and making improvements. Home improvements are an investment when done wisely. Like the multi-car garage, the outdoor room is not a passing fad. It’s a relaxing and enjoyable home investment, an upgrade that can be added at a fraction of the cost of indoor construction, in a fraction of the time. By knowing the right steps to take, it’s possible to turn an outdoor space that’s been a dream and turn it into a reality. Beyond outdoor furniture or a fire pit, pergolas, a deck, landscaping, and an outdoor kitchen are all great investments in your home. Not only are you doing something that you can enjoy, but also the next homeowner. 

Invest your refund with The Outdoor GreatRoom Company and get inspired for your own outdoor room here. 

 

 

New Product: Pine Ridge Collection

March 20th, 2015

Pine Ridge_flame_print_white

The Outdoor GreatRoom Company™ is pleased to announce the newly designed Pine Ridge Collection. These fire pit tables were designed to bring rustic elegance to the outdoors as both a fire pit and as a table. The Pine Ridge gas fire pit tables are available in two sizes, Linear with a 12×42” burner or Square with a 24×24” burner. Each table uses a stainless steel, UL listed Crystal Fire™ burner for safety and made of durable, outdoor rated materials.

The faux barnwood supercast top coordinated with an easy to care for stucco base is accented with real wood cedar corners and rivet detailing. Whether you are entertaining a small or large group, the Pine Ridge Fire Pit Table will be the center of attention!

Pine Ridge features include:

  • Barnwood supercast top with matching burner cover
  • Easy to maintain stucco base with stained cedar wood cornersStainless Steel Burner- UL Listed
  • Burners produce up to 100,000 BTU’s
  • Stores 20 lb. LP Tank in base

ABOUT THE OUTDOOR GREATROOM COMPANY
The Outdoor GreatRoom Company™ (OGC) manufactures unique, upscale products with design appeal for indoor and outdoor living spaces. Products include gas fire pits and gas fire pit tables, pergolas, outdoor kitchen islands, outdoor gas fireplaces, indoor electric fireplaces, grills, outdoor patio furniture and accessories. Visit www.outdoorrooms.com for more information.

Follow The Outdoor GreatRoom Company for updates and design inspirations at www.twitter.com/OutdoorRooms and www.facebook.com/OutdoorGreatrooms

10 Steps: Planning for Spring

March 19th, 2015

Spring is here! Get prepared for outdoor living with these 10 steps to successfully plan your outdoor room for spring.

Tuscany Pergola

1. Determine the purpose of the room.
Step one in the design process is to create a list of needs and wants, then prioritize. How will it be used most? Maybe as an outdoor kitchen, a cozy nook for two, an al fresco dining room, a gathering place for friends and family, a quiet place to read and write, an entertainment center or outdoor theatre, gardening, swimming, lawn games, or jungle gyms.
Tip – Make use of free online resources that help gather and organize ideas like Pinterest and Houzz!

2. See it as a room.
Don’t set limits while envisioning a room without walls – consider any option and think big. Some people have difficulty seeing how a room without walls can be decorated, but as soon as they picture a pergola or outdoor structure, it’s easier to define the space. This may include simple pillars for stringing lights or hanging ivy on full-size structures to create privacy walls.

Boardwalk_NoPeople

3. Create a Landscape Plan
Make efficient use of space and time by working with a professional designer or landscape architect who will analyze the site, provide solutions and develop a scaled plan that includes all of the desired elements. Besides offering valuable building and layout ideas, a professional will be able to provide a rough estimate on project costs. If you’re looking to DIY the landscaping, find inspiration from Pinterest or Houzz!

4. Prepare a Timeline and Stick to the Budget.
Be sure that a savings plan and budget are in place to cover the cost for new items, renovations, and professional services. Determine which parts of the project can be done in phases to meet budgeting needs. With a structured plan, it is much easier to work in phases and not end up with a  mismatched or unfinished looking final result. Begin with the essentials and then move forward with intent towards completion of the project as a whole. Take Inventory. There may be salvageable items for use which are currently available in a garage or storage space. What needs to be replaced or refurbished? Consider each component for the outdoor space in this inventory: outdoor structures (pergolas, shades, gazebos, patios/decks), grills (gas, electric, charcoal, pellet), outdoor kitchens and outdoor entertainment areas (outdoor televisions, lawn games, sinks, refrigerators, side buers, kegerators, spas, etc), lighting and heating, campfires/fire pits (prefab surrounds, built in, custom finishing options), fireplaces (gas, wood, gel fueled), landscaping (plants, water features, pathways), hardscaping (pavers, pizza ovens), etc.

6. Do Your Homework. 
As a rule, cities have adapted from the Uniform building Code, which was written to enhance public safety and protect property owners from unsafe construction. Local codes take precedence, so it’s important to check with planning and zoning boards. For some landscape projects and outdoor rooms, a city permit may be needed. Also consider any foundation work such as laying pavement, staining, landscaping, gas lines, or installation that may need to be done by contract workers. Be sure you know the lay of the land – some items that require installation may need a flat area. Also consider the climate, the direction of the sun, shading, noise and privacy factors.

Custom Outdoor Kitchen and Matching Fire Pit

7. Save Time and Money. 
Find local talent to help with set up, assembly and manual labor – especially the heavy lifting. Contact local dealers, retail locations, and ask around to get recommendations for experienced, reliable worker. It may take time up front, but will save you time and effort in the long run. Another idea to consider is DIY options (Do it yourself). Everyone wants to save a buck, and while working on various phases, there may be elements homeowners wants to manage by themselves. Buying a pre-finished Fire Pit or Pergola Kit can help you save time and money vs. building your own. This means more money to spend on plants, furnishings and accessories.  Example: finishing of custom surfaces on pre-fab unfinished islands or fire pit surrounds.

8. Entertainment Outdoors.
Outdoor kitchens are the heart of the home indoor and they are becoming an equally essential element outside of the home. Grilling islands now offer everything from storage space to refrigeration, sinks, even outdoor TV’s. Remember to check restrictions or codes related to use of open flames or any requirements for natural gas lines.

SquareSierra_02

9. Light up the Night, Turn on the Heat and Pull up a Chair.
People are naturally attracted to flame. Think of fire either as an anchor or centerpiece for the room. Setting a fire pit in the middle of the space creates a cozy focal point, while a fireplace just outside the perimeter brings natural warmth to the whole room and allows for maximum square  footage for decorating. Fire pits, fireplaces, solar lights, or hanging lights add ambience, warmth, and an outdoorsy glow to the whole yard. Outdoor furniture is generally a high priority. By committing to purchase products with high quality and design, they will withstand the outdoor  elements far longer than similar looking, less expensive options.

10. Pay Attention to Design and Detail.
Strategically placed plants and accessories add the finishing touches to an outdoor room. Now it’s all about aesthetics: hanging plants, outdoor rugs, art, lawn games, potted plants, candles, etc. Pull in colors and textures from the home architecture to create a seamless transition from indoors to out. Like the multi-car garage, the outdoor room is not a passing fad. It’s a relaxing and enjoyable home investment, an upgrade that can be added at a fraction of the cost of indoor construction, in a fraction of the time. By knowing the right steps to take, it’s possible to turn an outdoor space that’s been a dream and turn it into a reality.

Top 10 Reasons To Buy a Gas Fire Pit vs. a Wood Burning Fire Pit

March 12th, 2015

Start your outdoor season early this spring with a gas fire pit table from OGC

1.       Gas fire pits can be burning at full capacity in less than 5 seconds and be turned off whenever you want– have a flame instantly with no hassle or wait time to extinguish.

2.       Safe to use in city limits and next to houses where wood burning fire pits may not be allowed.

3.       Variety of looks, designs and burner sizes available with OGC gas fire pit tables.

Outdoor Greatroom Company
Naples fire pit table on a wooden deck

4.       No sparks or hot embers in the wind with gas fire pits means no mess!

5.       Safe to use with your patio furniture, next to your pool, or on a wooden deck where a wood burning fire pit couldn’t go.

Sierra Fire Pit
Sierra Fire Pit Table next to a pool

6.       Chat, dining or pub height available.

Colonial Collection Height Comparison
Colonial Fire Pit Tables- Chat, Dining, or Pub Height

7.       2 for 1– Gas fire pit and a table– Cover the burner when not using and use as a table

BlackMontego_GlassCover
Montego Fire Pit table with Glass Burner Cover

8.       Provides both heat and ambience with an adjustable flame– control the temperature and flame height (OGC fire pits are 60K or 90K BTUs).

9.       Change the look with OGC glass guards and colored glass gems

10.     UL listed for safety– very important!

 

Spring into the Outdoors!

March 5th, 2015

It’s that time of year again when we come out of winter hibernation and get back to enjoying the great outdoors. To get your outdoor room ready for the season ahead, spring maintenance is a must. Whether your outdoor room has a gas fire pit table, pergola, outdoor furniture, or an outdoor kitchen island, be prepared for spring and summer entertaining with this list of helpful tips!

Tuscany Pergola

Gas Fire Pit Table Maintenance:

  • Clean all loose debris from glass beads and burner
  • Clean all port holes in the burner, making sure no obstructions, i.e. twigs or cobwebs
  • Check all fittings and make sure re-tightened
  • Check all gas lines for any obstructions, i.e. spider cobwebs
  • Make sure any rubber gas lines have not cracked 0r been chewed by animals
  • Check and replace batteries if needed
  • Make sure valve turns freely
  • Remove any loose debris from base of gas fire pit table
  • Confirm gas tank has fuel or if it uses natural gas, the main line is turned on

Outdoor Furniture Maintenance:

  • Brush off any loose dirt from frame & outdoor furniture cushions
  • Prepare a cleaning solution of 1/4 cup mild soap per gallon of warm water (for spot cleaning of cushions, put into spray bottle)
  • Use a sponge or a soft bristle brush to clean frame & outdoor furniture cushions
  • Allow cleaning solution to soak into fabric
  • Rinse thoroughly & let furniture air dry

Outdoor Kitchen Island Maintenance:

  • Clean all loose debris from in and around outdoor kitchen island
  • If there is a fire pit burner built-in, follow Gas Fire Pit Maintenance directions above
  • If refrigerator or other accessories were removed for winter, clean and place back into island
  • If grill is installed, clean as usual and make sure it is working properly
  • Check all fittings and make sure re-tightened
  • Make sure any gas or electrical lines have not been damaged
  • Clean with water and mild soap cleaning solution

Pergola Maintenance:

  • Clear all loose debris from pergola and surrounding area
  • Clean with water (use low pressure power washer if necessary)
  • Wood pergolas may need to be re-stained or resealed every 1-3 years depending on climate

Keeping your outdoor room clean with routine, preventative maintenance will help keep your outdoor room beautiful and last for years to come!

Electric Grills: Perfect for Apartments and Condos

February 26th, 2015

If you just purchased a condo, or maybe just signed a lease for a new apartment – what can you do if you love to grill but you don’t have a large outdoor space or can’t have a fire? Because multi-family properties have different fire codes than single family homes, you need to make sure what you can and cannot use for outdoor cooking! Many apartment buildings and condos do not allow gas or charcoal grills on balconies for safety reasons, but electric grills are often allowed. The technology in electronic grills has advanced to the point where you can do the same things with an electric grill that you can with a gas grill which typically can cost hundreds (often thousands) more.

LG20ie2

The Legacy 2 Electric Cook Number™ Grill can sear, roast and even comes with the patented Cook Number System™, taking the guess work out of grilling. It is compact in size, perfect for smaller balconies, and can also be used traveling with an RV, camping, tailgating, and more! The real point is you can still have all the amenities found in a large back yard without actually having the extra outdoor space!

electric grill