Why is my Patio Umbrella Leaning? 5 Quick Solutions

There are three main reasons that cause a patio umbrella to lean. The diameter of the base can be too big for the umbrella pole causing it to wiggle around. The second reason can be that there is a huge gap between the patio table and the umbrella pole allowing the pole to lean on one side. The last reason can be the base is not heavy enough to support the size of your patio umbrella. 

There are several ways you can prevent the umbrella from leaning. But the main solution is reducing the gap between the umbrella pole and the table or the base. Make sure the pole does not have any space for it to wiggle around. Many homeowners use devices like wedges to fill up this gap. 

A lean patio umbrella produces an annoying sound when the pole rubs against the table. People sit on the patio to relax but this annoying sound can destroy your comfort. A lean patio umbrella can also destroy the finish on your patio table. 

Solutions to a Leaning Patio Umbrella 

  1. Use a cone wedge 

This is a rubber device that is shaped like a cone. It is placed in between the umbrella pole and the table hence filling the gap that existed before. Once the gap is filled, the umbrella will not lean. The umbrella pole will stand straight and still. You can also place the cone wedge on the base diameter. This will fill up the space between the base and the pole. 

  1. Replace table rings 

A patio table always has a plastic ring around the hole where the umbrella pole passes through. This plastic ring can wear and tear because it spends most of its time under the sun. A worn-out table ring creates a space between the table and the umbrella pole. Always check and inspect the table ring. Replace the old one if necessary. It is easy to replace a table ring. 

  1. Choose the correct base 
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The rule of thumb states that the bigger the umbrella canopy the heavier the base. So if your umbrella and the base do not match, the umbrella will lean on one side. The best way to know the appropriate base for your umbrella is by multiplying the diameter of the umbrella canopy by ten. For example, if your umbrella canopy is six feet then the appropriate base should be 60 pounds. 

  1. Secure the base in  the ground 

A base that is underground is more secure than a free-standing base. It is not a must for the base to be underground but you can use bolts and nuts to secure it on the patio floor. An underground base adds aesthetic value to the patio. But be careful with the open hole on your patio floor. A permanent base does not allow you to move around with your patio umbrella. 

  1. Use umbrella stands 

Umbrella stands are more stable than umbrella bases. An umbrella stand can hold the umbrella straight up without the help of the table. An umbrella stand can hold up to 30cm of the umbrella pole while the base only holds 15cm of the pole. Another advantage of umbrella stands is that most of them are portable and come in different shapes and designs. 

Types of Patio Umbrellas 

  1. Table patio umbrella 

This is the most common type of patio umbrella. It comes with a table that has a hole in the middle where the umbrella pole passes through. The table helps the base to keep the umbrella stable and keep it standing straight. The canopy of the umbrella is larger than the table. Most of these tables are round but you can choose any other shape that you want. 

  1. Tilting umbrella 
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This umbrella is the same as a table umbrella. It also comes with a table but it has an extra pivoting joint. This pivoting joint is about three-quarters the umbrella pole. It allows you to change the angle of the umbrella canopy. This feature gives you a chance to be under the shade even when the sun rays are coming from the sides. It will protect you from the sun the whole day. 

  1. Double-top patio umbrella 

This is a patio umbrella that has two canopy tops. It has a small canopy suspended over a large main canopy. It is a special design that resembles ancient Chinese roofs. It is a good umbrella if you want elegance on your patio. Sometimes you will find the two canopies having different colors or shapes.

  1. Big square patio umbrella 

This is a huge square umbrella that can cover almost ten adults. It is the best patio umbrella if you have a huge family or you always have many guests. This type of umbrella has a heavy base and an umbrella pole on the side. You can take your hammock or outdoor bed and sleep under this type of patio umbrella. 

  1. Cantilever umbrella 

This is a patio umbrella that resembles the large square umbrella except this one is larger. It also has a pole and the base on the side not right in the middle. It can provide shade for twenty adults or thirty children under 13 years. It can also cover three to six tables. It is the best patio umbrella for outdoor ceremonies like weddings and graduation parties. 

  1. Solar patio umbrella 
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This is the modern type of patio umbrella. It has a canopy fabric that acts like a solar panel and has some LED lights along the umbrella ribs. The canopy traps sunlight then converts it into electric energy that is stored in a battery found in the base. Switch on the LED lights when evening comes and continue enjoying your patio space. However, this umbrella is very expensive.


Your patio umbrella will lean because of three things. If there is a gap between the table and the umbrella pole. Or if the base diameter is too huge for the umbrella pole. Or the base is too light for your huge umbrella canopy. Use a cone wedge to fill up the space on the table hole or the base diameter. You can also buy a much heavier base and your patio umbrella will never lean.