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How To Build A Pergola On A Patio

Build A Patio Pergola Attached To The House To Extend Your Living Space To The Yard A Diy Pergola Creates A Room Outside For Entertaining And Gathering

See how we built our patio pergola to help define the perfect gathering space for our family. We partnered with the Home Depot to turn our long side patio into a oasis on a budget.

A pergola attached to the house was the perfect solution to create an outdoor dining and kitchen area. Today’s post shares the DIY pergola build.

This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

We wanted to share our patio pergola project in September. We bought the wood, made the plans, then the rains came! Oh my goodness, it rained and it rained and it rained! I don’t ever remember that much rain in September.

The first month of fall is usually so nice. Not too hot, but still almost like summer. I think because I really wanted to build a big project outside, this year it decided to rain instead.

We managed to sneak in an evening of building and installed all the posts before it was too dark, but then when we had another day to build, it was raining again.

I am pretty sure our neighbors thought we were crazy. All we had were three half-painted posts coming out of our patio for weeks.

Thankfully, the first day of October, the rain stopped. It was cold, but I would much rather build in the cold than the heat so we got to work.

With the help of my father-in-law, we were able to get almost the entire 20? x 11? patio pergola built in 6 hours of work. Then another day of finishing up and painting and the DIY pergola is done!

How To Build A Pergola On An Existing Deck That Will Stay Strong And Beautiful For Years

A pergola is a great addition to an existing deck, but you’ll need to keep a few things in mind so that your pergola stays safe and sturdy.

When I first put in my deck, I couldn’t help but feel like it was missing something. I wasn’t sure what it was at first, but one sunny Saturday morning, as I was trying to enjoy the outdoors but getting sunburned, it occurred to me: I needed a covering. I decided that the best way to manage this would be to build a pergola over my deck. Turns out, it was actually easier than I thought it would be.

If you’re wondering how to build a pergola on an existing deck, we’ve got some tips. It’s a fairly straightforward process, but your focus should be on stability and security, and you can get that with the right materials. As deck hardware has become more advanced, it’s getting much easier to build on top of existing structures without having to reframe everything. Stronger post bases and more versatile wood ties allow you to essentially clamp two structures together and turn them into one. Here are our picks for the hardware you should be focusing on.

How to Build a Pergola on an Existing Deck: Choose Great Hardware

Tips for Making Your Deck Pergola Safe and Sturdy

Diy Pergola Cover Ideas: 7 Ways To Protect Your Patio From Sun And Rain

Wanda Simone

In the summer, I love to grill and entertain outdoors. But since I live in an area that often gets lots of sun and afternoon rainstorms, my outdoor cookouts are either really hot or getting rained out. To fix that issue, I went on a hunt for ways I could cover the patio around my outdoor kitchen and came up with these DIY pergola cover ideas – some that just provide lots of shade, and some that are waterproof.

Back in the spring, I did a deck and patio makeover that included sprucing up my outdoor kitchen area.

Now that it’s looking good, I’ve been doing a lot more grilling out there.

And while I love my new updated cooking space, there’s one thing missing. And that’s a cover for the pergola that goes over my outdoor kitchen area.

While the pergola provides some shade, it isn’t very helpful during the day when the sun is directly overhead And it doesn’t provide any protection at all when it’s raining.

Not that I expect to be standing out there all day in the rain. But here in South Carolina, we tend to get a lot of 15 minute rain storms in the afternoon. Which always seem to occur right after I have put the food on the grill.

So I would love to be able to stay out there and not get soaked.

Which is why I’ve been searching for DIY pergola cover ideas to provide some extra shade and rain protection for my little grilling area patio.

Essential Diy Pergola Finishing Touches Installing The Bottle Opener

The final step to the perfect pergola, and one often overlooked by the novice, is to install a durable, good-looking bottle opener on one of the posts, preferably at a height and location that doesn’t require leaving one’s chair to use. After that, it’s just a matter of moving the patio furniture and grill under the freshly-screwed joists , and kicking back in your home-made shade with a fat, juicy burger and an ice-cold beer.

+ Surprisingly Cheap And Easy Diy Pergola Ideas With Full Tutorial

Build a Patio Pergola attached to the House

It’s always a great idea to build a patio in your backyard. This paved area which is particularly built in a backyard is meant to provide extra enjoyment in your house.

Yeap, having a patio will make your outdoor living space looks and feels more exhilarating to enjoy. You can do lots of things joyfully on this spot like reading some books, having a chitchat, or just enjoy the summer breeze.

For sure, a patio also enhances the overall look of every house, creating a new focal point for the exterior layout. Therefore, having a beautiful patio is a must to get an attractive look for your outdoor space.

Adding a cover to a patio is always a good choice to make it look more attractive. It will give the patio a huge change to influence its design.

Furthermore, a patio cover also makes your time feel more enjoyable since it provides some great benefits. You will not have to worry about the direct sunlight, unwanted ‘dropping’ or some drizzle when you spend some good times on your patio.

There are lots of cover options that you can choose to shade a patio. From shade to pergola are available to choose to suit your needs.

Of course, a pergola is still the most favorite cover chosen by many homeowners to style up their patio. It is so understandable since this kind of cover doesn’t only cover the patio very well, but also bring its style to a whole new level.

Measure Your Soffits To Determine The Diy Pergola Column Centers

If pergola designs include building close to the house, first measure the projection of your eaves. Keep the center of the posts nearest the house at least 7 in. farther from the house than this measurement to accurately position the column centers near but not too close to the house. Drive remote stakes an equal distance from the house, attaching a string to help mark and align the outer post locations.

To keep the posts in alignment, stake your post locations using remote stakes with a string. With the stakes driven beyond the work area, you’ll be able to undo the string while you dig and then reattach it later to check for alignment. To check for left-to-right placement parallel to the house, just measure the distance from one of the remote stakes and write this measurement on a notepad. To make sure the layout is square, adjust the diagonal measurements of the postholes so they’re equal.

Pergola Ideas That Will Add Style And Shade To Your Backyard

You don’t need to travel far for a relaxing outdoor retreat.

Creating an outdoor space that’s cool and comfortable can be a bit of a challenge—especially if there aren’t any trees to block out the hot summer sun. Thankfully, it’s easy to install a pergola that provides shade and style. We found free plans for building your own pergola, as well as fun decorating ideas for existing patio and porch covers. Just be sure to look into whether or not you’ll need a permit for your project before you get started, and consider hiring a professional for tough builds.

No wonder the National Association of Landscape Professionals listed pergolas as one of 2019’s top trends. Usually made of wood or composite material, as in this California space designed by Emily Henderson, the structures not only lend sophisticated style to an al fresco sanctuary, but they’re also available with additional features including roll-down windows, space heaters, and lighting and sound systems.

Edison bulbs and potted plants look beautiful hanging from this pergola made of cedar wood, which is “naturally resistant to rot, decay, and insect attacks.”

Planning Out A Pergola With Linx Simplified Pergola System

Lay out the parts for the top • 4 wood posts and 4 TriFits, laid out in a square shape. Place flattened TriFit boxes between Linx parts and the ground to protect all surfaces. Measure parallel posts to ensure equal lengths. Trim with saw as necessary.

Create 2 ‘C’ Shape Ends: Selecting 2 parallel posts, slide the TriFits on both ends of each post. Do not use screw fasteners yet.

Create large ‘U’ Shape: Insert remaining 2 loose posts into each side of the ‘C’ end. Do not use screw fasteners yet.

Attach the C-shaped end to the complete square. Raise posts off ground and slide LINX TriFits onto post. Do not use screw fasteners yet.

Choosing The Right Location And Pergola Plans & Designs

Because this DIY pergola project is made to stand independent of the house, you can either locate it right near your house as we did or let it stand alone in the garden. You can also consider using wood chips or gravel as a floor or even pour a concrete slab underneath. By keeping it unattached , you don’t have to deal with moving existing gutters or matching eaves. You also don’t have to mess with frost footings . However, if you have clay soil, it’s best to dig to frost depth for your footings to prevent frost heave.

Our existing patio was built over a sand and compacted gravel base, so we removed only the stones necessary to dig the 12-in. diameter holes to secure the posts. You’ll most likely have a different situation. Build a pergola over an existing patio saves you a lot of time, money and work.

If you’ll be adding a patio later, be sure to pour all the footings at the finished patio height as part of your pergola designs. Keep in mind any slope you’ll include in the patio. Most patios slope about 1/8 in. per foot to drain.

Diy Pergola Plans: How To Build A Pergola For Your Home

A pergola is a structure usually consisting of parallel colonnades supporting an open roof of girders and cross rafters. In layman’s terms, it is a cool place like a patio for relaxation. If you are looking for DIY pergola plans, you are in the right place.

In this article, we have put together a compilation of some of the best videos and tutorials that will teach you how to build a pergola for your home. As hard as it may seem, building a pergola is actually very easy with the right tools, materials and guide handy.

What Type Of Wood Should You Use For A Diy Wood Pergola

We used green treated lumber for our pergola. It is pressure treated with a chemical that allows it to withstand the weather.

One thing to keep in mind when using pressure treated wood. You will have to wait to paint or stain it for 6 months to a year. The wood needs to dry out before it takes any finish.

You can also use cedar, though in our experience it doesn’t always last as long as green treated lumber. It can be painted or stained right away, however, so if you are impatient to have a finished product, this might be the wood for you.

How To Build A Pergola On A Concrete Patio In Two Days

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Building a pergola is a quick way to add a touch of class to your outdoor space, and it’s certainly something a homeowner can tackle by him or herself, and can even finish in a couple of days if sufficiently motivated. Additionally, for those who aren’t very experienced in building things with wood, this is a good starter project to develop skills that will readily transfer to other projects.

I’ll note right away that I was able to build this pergola in two days; however, I’ve done this sort of thing a few times now, and I have a lot of power tools that make the job easier. If your skills aren’t high and/or you have a limited tool set, it will take longer. Don’t despair though – this still makes a great fair-weather weekend project that can be built over a couple weeks.

In the steps that follow, I link to videos I made for the build. The links go directly to the timestamp in the video pertaining to that particular step, so don’t think I’m just spamming the same video over and over ? You can also watch the in-depth videos in this playlist. My intent for this Instructable, with the videos to complement, is to be the most comprehensive tutorial online for building a pergola.

Also, check these links if you are looking for premade pergola plans or a custom pergola for your own yard.

How To Build Your Pergola The Simple Steps To Success

DIY build a 10’x20’ Pergola Over Patio (7min) Less than ...

Over the years, we ended up creating quite a few more pergolas for friends, neighbors and family. Below, we share the simple secrets and tips we have learned over the years to create a beautiful structure that lasts. All of course, with keeping an eye on the budget!

Here is a look below at our biggest keys to success, step by step:

#1 Choosing The Right Lumber

Building a strong, attractive pergola all starts with choosing the right lumber. One thing we have learned is that 4? x 4? posts are simply not strong enough to hold up over time. Nor is wood that is 1? inch thick or less for the top of the structure.

We use only 6? x 6? treated posts, and 2x treated lumber for building our pergolas. Although there are thinner and less costly options, the thickness of 2x lumber gives the piece massive long-term strength and durability.

As for what type of wood to use, we have found treated lumber to be the most economical and durable choice. By far! Cedar is an option, but the cost of cedar is astronomical. And in many cases, cedar will still warp and twist.

Treated lumber has come a long way in the past few years. It’s also extremely versatile. It can be left to weather to a natural grey patina, or painted or stained to match existing colors. And it builds one beautiful, strong and affordable pergola!

What Does It Cost To Build Your Own Pergola

Step 5: Mark The Posts For Cutting And Trim To Length

The length of the posts is determined based on the offsets measured in the previous step. Begin by marking each post “A” through “D”, and then measure from the bottom of the post the offset length you previously recorded for each. Use a square to transfer this line across the width of the post.

Next, start with the longest measured offset – let’s say 10″ for instance. The posts are 8 feet long, so the “leftover” length is = 7′-2″. Measure the “leftover” 7′-2″ from the offset marks you previously made on each post, and mark these at the top ends. Use a square to transfer this mark all around the posts so that you have a cut line wrapping around the post.

Using a circular saw, cut along this line on each post, then flip the posts to cut the opposite face from the first cut. Use a reciprocating saw to finish the cut, assuming that your circular saw doesn’t cut all the way through with the first two passes.

Step 6: Mark Top Tenons Cut Tenons And Chamfer Edges

The tops of the posts need to be cut into a tenon to hold the secondary beams. To do so, measure down from the newly-cut top of the posts to the depth of the secondary beams, in this case 7-1/4″ for the 2×8 boards. Make a mark and square it across the width of the post with a speed square. Transfer this mark all around the post.

Next, measure in from one face to the thickness of the secondary beam, 1-1/2″ for these. Mark this for the full depth of the beam, which I did with a combination square, but which you can easily do by making two marks and connecting them with a straight edge. Do this for both opposing faces of the post to establish the cut lines for the tenon.

Using the circular saw, set it to cut the depth of the secondary beam , and make a cross-cut to establish the shoulder of the tenon. Roll the post and make the same cut on the opposite face.

Reset the circular saw to its maximum cut depth and roll the post 90 degrees to begin cutting the cheeks of the tenon. You want to stop when the saw blade meets the shoulder cut that you previously established. Don’t over-run the shoulder cut, or your joint will look quite bad. Make the other cheek cut on the same side of the post, then roll it to cut the cheeks on the opposite face. Finally, finish the cut with the reciprocating saw.

Step 4: Measure The Post Offsets Due To Patio Slope

If your patio is anything like mine, it slopes away from your house for drainage. This presents the obvious problem that the posts can’t be all the same length, otherwise the top of the pergola won’t be level. To mitigate this, the post offsets must be measured from a reference point and all measured and cut accordingly.

The sill of my patio door proved to be a convenient reference point. In order to measure off these, I put together a couple scraps of wood to extend the reference line out to the same line as the post bases. Then I clamped this extension to the door sill to hold it in place and tied one end of a string line to it. On the opposite end of the line of post bases, I drove in a wooden stake and tied the string line to it. You’ll want to make sure that the string line is very tight and is also level. This string line is now at the exact same elevation as the door sill.

When you’re satisfied with the string line, measure the distance between the string and the bottom of the post base, and record this number. Do the same with the next post base in line, then repeat these steps for the other side of the pergola. You should have four measurements written down that correlate to each corner of the pergola. It will be convenient to name these “A” through “D” to keep things straight or some other naming scheme that suits your taste.

In my case, since I had to contend with the second story overhang, I also measured this height with respect to the door sill.

How To Build A Patio Pergola Attached To The House


  • It took us 1 1/2 gallons to paint 2 coats on the patio pergola.
  • Installing the Posts

    We knew we were going to adding a pergola to our patio before we had the concrete poured. To give our pergola footings a strong grip, the concrete guys dug out where the posts were going to be so the concrete was deeper in those areas.

    Then when we installed the post bases, the bolts used to hold them wouldn’t be longer than the cement was deep for a nice strong hold. This step is not necessary, but if you can, it doesn’t hurt.

    To install the post bases, we drilled a 1/2? hole in the concrete with a 6? masonry bit. The hole was about 4 1/2? deep.

    Then we placed the base over the top and using a hammer, tapped in the wedge anchor. And we tightened it down with a wrench. Now we were ready for posts.

    I thought it would be easier to paint all the boards for the pergola before we built it, then I could just add the final coat once it was built.

    Well, because of the rain, I only managed to get a few boards painted. So you will notice some boards are white, but most are not. No worries, we remedied that when the sun finally decided to shine again.

    We attached the 4×4 posts to the post base. Then cut 2×4 boards to flank either side of the posts. These are for a bit more stabilization and to support the weight of the 2×8 beams to make installing them easier.

    Attaching the Header to the House

    Now, getting the siding back on may prove to be a challenge too. I’ll be sure to share that too.

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    Building A Wood Pergola 5 Simple Steps To Success

    #1 Select The Right Lumber

    Creating a sturdy, long-lasting pergola all begins by selecting the right lumber for the project. To create a wood pergola that will stand up to the rigors of outdoor life, that means staying far away from wood that is too thin, or won’t hold up over time.

    Thick, rough-sawn cedar is a beautiful look, but can certainly be expensive. Treated lumber is an excellent, durable, and cost effective option to cedar for creating a strong and beautiful pergola.

    Treated lumber is by far the most economical choice of all. Although prices have soared over the last year, it is still the best option when it comes to creating your outdoor masterpiece. Although cedar is rot resistant, it can still have warping and failure issues if too thin, or if not treated or stained. And the price of cedar? Well, astronomical is probably the best description of all!

    Treated lumber has come a long way from the wavy, warped board available years back. Not only can it be left natural for those who want the a weathered look, it can also be stained or painted to match any decor. Rough-sawn untreated pine is an option, but it must be stained or painted.

    The rough texture of rough-sawn wood will hold up better that planed wood. If using untreated wood, the posts should always be mounted above ground.

    #2 Use Sturdy Posts

    Like any structure, a pergola is only as strong as its framework. And for a pergola, that means investing in thick, strong posts and frame boards.

    Diy Pergola With Lattice Border From Ryobi Nation

    This one is actually a pergola with the built-in swing, but its design is totally inspiring to try. It has the lattice borders on its sides which will enhance the comfort when you enjoy some easy times on your patio.

    It also has such a small floating table to provide great convenience in storing some outdoor stuff around.

    A Couple Of Tips When Attaching The Pergola Beam:

    Tip #1: Use a to set the screws part of the way in while the beam is on the ground. That way, it is easier to screw into the post when you lift the beam up to attach it.

    Tip #2: If you are screwing the beam in by yourself, insert a screw on one post on the measured pencil line to hold the beam board up while you are attaching the beam to the other post.

    To attach the pergola beams: Line up the measuring lines you made earlier. Put a on top of your beam and screw the beam into the post. Make sure it is level and then continue attaching it to the post.

    Repeat for the other side. You should have a beam on the front and the back of your pergola post when you are done.

    Once the beams are screwed in, use with an impact drill to add more security to the beam and screw them into the post.

    Step 7: Plumb The Posts And Attach To Post Bases

    How to build a pergola on a patio

    Now to start making the pergola take shape!

    We’re going to start by raising and plumbing the posts. At one of the corners, place a post in the post base, but laying down on the ground. Pound in a wooden stake about 6 feet away from the post base next to the laid-down post, and another one 90 degrees around the post so that you can brace from both sides. Take two of the spare 2x4s, and attach each at each of these stakes with a single nail for now, and lay them down also.

    Stand the post up and grab one of the braces you previously laid down, and bring the brace around into contact with the post. Using the 4-foot level, plumb the face of the post aligned with the brace. Once satisfied with the plumb-ness of the post, use a nail to tack the brace in place.

    Grab the other brace, and repeat the steps above to plumb the post from the other direction. Double check that the post is still plumb in both directions, then go ahead and drive another couple nails into the brace at either end.

    Now, take your drill with a drill bit slightly smaller than the HeadLOK screw, and pre-drill holes to match those in the post base. Drive in the HeadLOK screws into these holes. For these particular post bases, there are four holes total, with two on each side. At this point, your post should be secure top and bottom and shouldn’t move when casually jostled.

    What Size Should You Build Your Diy Wood Pergola

    That depends. The size you choose for your pergola depends on what you are planning on using it for. We built our pergola with posts that were 73 1/2? apart from inside to inside of each post. This size was large enough to fit the wooden swings in between. Too much larger than that and you risk the beam not having enough support to span the distance between the two posts, causing it to warp.

    Weathered Pergola With Rocky Base By Anna White

    Having an earthy-themed pergola is always a good choice to make it blend well with the outdoor space surroundings. It’s designed in unfinished style with the rocky base which beautifully flows with this backyard’s look.

    The pergola is huge enough to shade a 7-Piece patio dining set supported by the trees around.

    Part 1 Of 3:preparing And Measuring Your Space

  • 1Research zoning laws in your area. States and towns have zoning laws that restrict certain kinds of construction. Call your local building commission or zoning department to make sure that you can build a pergola on your property. You can also find zoning ordinances on your local town’s website.XResearch source
  • In some cases you’ll have to get a permit before you can start building.
  • If you’re in an urban area, you’ll have to consider the “setbacks” set by the cities.XExpert Source
  • Planning A Deck Pergola And Furniture Together

    Choosing furniture and planning the details of pergola decks is less complicated when you know from day one that you will center your space around a pergola. Decks are often unshielded from the sun, but when selecting outdoor furniture for decks with pergolas you can craft spaces intended for prolonged use. Here are a few furniture themes that work well with pergola decks:

    ?    With shelter from the elements and optional lighting, a pergola deck is the ultimate location for your outdoor dining space. Make it the go-to location for large gatherings by situating a large dining set for eight people or more directly underneath the center of the pergola. Measure out your space and double-check that there is enough room to comfortably walk between the posts and the dining set while carrying platters and plates of food.

    ?    An effective design choice is to erect an open-air pergola complete with lighting and a sound system for parties. For this arrangement, position a few bar tables inside the pergola for guests to set their drinks or snacks while mingling, and add a few benches or sofas along the border of the pergola when anyone wants to spend a few minutes off of their feet.

    ?    With a connected pergola you can easily furnish an outdoor living room intended for nighttime movie screenings or game night with the kiddos. Deep seating sets with a variety of seating options and an extra coffee table for activities should all comfortably fit under the span of your pergola.

    Diy Pergola With Fabric Shade From Anna White

    Adding the fabric to a pergola design is surely a great idea to provide a much better shade for your patio. Here, the simple pergola is completed with the rolled up fabric on its roof panel.

    It will make you feel more comfortable when you have some chat times on your patio while enjoying the fresh summer breeze.

    How To Build A Patio Style Pergola Or Sundeck

    The perfect way to inexpensively extend your outdoor living area is to build a pergola or sundeck and cover it with Coolaroo outdoor fabric. Your new living area will provide welcome relief from the hot sun. Once you have built your structure, you can follow our guide to install your shade fabric.

    The following project is based on a standard 4.5 m x 3.6 m Pergola/Sundeck with one side fixed to an existing structure.


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