Aluminum is a popular choice for patios all over the country thanks to being lightweight, easy to work with, and cost-effective.
If your porch also features aluminum walls or roofs and you want to hang plants, lights, or any other outdoor decoration, then you came to the right place!
This article contains a detailed guide on how to hang things on aluminum patios. Luckily, there are several ways you can get the job done, and not all of them involve drilling!
How to Hang Things on Aluminum Patio
Hanging items on your patio can effectively transform the look of your house. Whether it’s a birthday banner, Halloween lanterns, or Christmas decorations, you’re bound to come across a time when you’ll want to hang stuff on your patio.
Similar to a concrete wall, if your patio is made out of aluminum you can’t just hammer some nails into it and call it a day. When it comes to an aluminum patio, the most common methods to hang things on it involve drilling the metal and installing a hook.
This is, of course, if you don’t mind putting a permanent hole in your patio.
That said, there’s a correct way to drill into an aluminum patio. You want to make sure you follow the steps below to avoid compromising the integrity of the aluminum or causing unnecessary dents.
Step 1: Mark the Spot
The first step is to mark the spot where the hole(s) will go in your aluminum patio.
This is a crucial step because it ensures that the hole will be used to put up the decoration you want, and not just become wasted permanent damage. Remember, planning is key when working with a drill.
So, determine where you’ll be hanging your decorations to figure out where the hook(s) should go on the aluminum patio. Use a marker to save the location of spot(s) by drawing a dot or a line onto the aluminum.
Step 2: Choose a Drill Bit
Once you have your mark(s) ready, don’t immediately fire up your drill! Instead, you need to first choose an appropriate drill bit.
The size of the drill bit you should use depends on the diameter of the screw that came with the hook.
You can use a drill bit of the same diameter or slightly bigger. But never use a drill bit with a diameter more than twice that of the hook screw.
When you decide on a drill bit, insert it into the chuck of the drill.
Step 3: Protect and Line Up
Next, you need to put on protective gear to avoid unnecessary accidents. When working with a drill and an aluminum patio, wearing safety glasses and gloves is a must.
Once you’re all suited up, it’s time to line up the drill. Position its tip firmly on the center of the mark you previously drew on the aluminum.
Step 4: Start and Push
It’s finally time to fire up your drill!
Begin by applying pressure gently to the back of the drill’s motor. Make sure you’re using the other hand -not the one holding the drill- to maximize the steadiness of the operation.
Slowly add more pressure and push the trigger on the drill. This will cause the drill to go through into the aluminum.
While the drill is moving through the aluminum, take off your hand from the back of the drill to release the pressure. The drill bit that you inserted will then guide the drill to keep breaking through the aluminum’s surface.
Step 5: Pull and Check
Once you feel and see that the drill bit has completely passed through the aluminum, pull it out carefully and kill the power tool.
Now, look at the hole you just created and check if it’s free of debris or if it’s not deep enough.
Step 6: Install the Hook
After that, grab the hook screw and insert it into the hole. Of course, you should have the hook part facing the outside (you).
Tightly fasten the hook screw to the aluminum patio. Then, add the washer to prevent the hook screw from coming loose.
Step 7: Test and Hang
Finally, use reasonable force and tug on the hook you just installed to test its security.
If it feels a bit wobbly, you should tighten the screw and the washer.
If it feels sturdy, you can go ahead and hang whatever decoration you want!
How to Hang Plants on Aluminum Patio
If you’re looking to hang plants on your aluminum patio, the following are some easy methods. Most of these can be used for more than even plants as well!
1. Use Plant Hangers
First of all, if you don’t mind drilling into your aluminum patio, then plant hangers are the best thing you can use to hang plants. They’re stylish, practical, versatile, and easy to install.
Plant hangers are available in many styles and sizes to fit the appearance and functionality you’re searching for. Also, they can be made out of multiple materials, which affects their key features as follows:
- Metal plant hangers come in a range of options including iron, aluminum, and brass. Generally, they’re the most durable type that can support the heaviest weight limits.
- Plastic plant hangers are usually either UV-resistant PVC or polyethylene. They’re a budget-friendly option that’s more flexible to work with and offers a more casual look.
- Fabric plant hangers exist in a wide variety of materials to choose from, including linen, hemp, cotton, bamboo, and jute. They’re the most decorative type with lots of patterns and colors to match any taste.
2. Install Alumahangers or Alumahooks
If you don’t want to drill a hole into your aluminum patio, then among the popular options you can go for are Alumahangers or Alumahooks. These are super easy to install and will take you less than a minute!
Alumahangers are made out of powder-coated 1/4-inch steel. They come in multiple colors and sizes to match your patio.
Installation of the hangers is simple, as you just need to slide them onto an adjacent beam. The hook will hang down to hold the plants, while the beam will bear the weight.
From there, you can simply hang your plants with a weight limit of up to 40 pounds. This mechanism also allows you to change the pots whenever you feel like it.
Alumahooks are based pretty much on the same concept but in hook form. Similarly, all you need to do is slide the long portion of the tool into your aluminum patio, leaving the hook section sticking out and ready for use.
Alumahooks are more affordable, but they have a weight limit of up to 5 pounds. They’re made out of durable plastic and you can paint them without issues to blend in seamlessly with your patio.
In addition to plants and flowers, you can use Alumahangers and Alumahooks to put up banners, lights, lanterns, wind chimes, and a lot more.
3. Apply Adhesive Hooks
Another gadget you can opt for if you don’t want to drill into your aluminum patio is an adhesive hook.
Adhesive hooks are a hassle-free way to help you hang plants from the walls or ceiling of your patio without putting permanent holes in its structure.
They’re also a breeze to install because all you need to do is mark the spot where you want to hang your plant, peel off the protective backing, and stick the hook onto the patio directly. The adhesive will work to keep the hook securely in place, so you can go ahead and hand whatever you want!
While the process can all be done in less than a minute, you need to keep in mind the weight limit of adhesive hooks. It typically depends on the brand and the size of the hook, but it’s never going to be as high as plant hangers that depend on drill holes
Usually, the most you can come across is around 5 to 10 pounds, so this may not be the best option for you if you’re working with heavier plants.
4. Try Magnetic Hooks
Aluminum patios can also work well with magnetic hooks if you want to keep their structure free of holes. This type of hook typically consists of a high-strength magnetic plate with a hook fixed to it.
As you may have guessed by now, applying magnetic hooks is a piece of cake. All you need to do is attach the magnetic plate to a spot on your patio and then hang the plant from the hook portion.
While pure aluminum isn’t a highly magnetic metal, alloy aluminum is. So you should check the composition of your patio first before using this gadget.
That said, even if the magnetic plate doesn’t stick to your aluminum patio directly, you can attach it to a metal fixture or an air vent. If there are nails installed on the patio, you can use them as well.
5. Fit Suction Cup Hangers
Last but not least, you can go with suction cup hangers to put plants on your aluminum patio. This is also a drilling-free tool, so it’s ideal for folks looking for something non permanent.
You can use suction cup hangers on ceilings and walls. They’re straightforward to use where you just fix the suction cup portion onto the surface of the patio.
You’ll be left with the hook part so you can use it to hang plants as you prefer. Keep in mind, however, that the maximum weight limit of suction cup hooks doesn’t usually go over 5 pounds.
As such, you can only hang relatively lightweight plants, or else you’ll be risking pulling off the suction cups over time.
How to Hang Lights on Aluminum Patio
Hanging lights on your aluminum lights is pretty much the same as hanging plants. The only difference is that lights are usually more lightweight than plant pots, so you don’t really need to worry about the weight limit of the fixtures.
This means you can use any of the solutions explained above to hang lights on your aluminum patio.
Whether you choose traditional hangers, Alumahangers, Alumahooks, magnetic hooks, adhesive hooks, or suction cup hooks — they’ll all work just fine!
Can You Screw Into an Aluminum Patio Cover?
Yes! Just follow the steps explained in the first section to screw into your patio cover.
Take care if drilling into the patio cover, as too much weight can start to pull the hardware through the aluminum. Toggle bolts provide girth on the backside of the cover, and can be handy in helping to prevent slippage.
Additionally, many of the other non-destructive means –such as adhesive hooks– can be used to hang things from your aluminum patio cover. Just keep in mind any weight limitations, as you don’t want objects to come crashing down while you’re lounging below.
As you can tell by now, there are many solutions if you’re wondering how to hang things on aluminum patios.
From drilling holes to applying adhesive hooks, the choice ultimately depends on what you’re hanging and if you want it to be permanent. The weight of the objects may direct you towards a solution.
Husband and father of three (actually, four if you include the pool). I’m an avid DIY-er and weekend warrior that enjoys taking up new projects around the house to help us maximize leisure right at home. I enjoy researching and sharing various tips, tricks and knowledge to help others make their home an oasis.