Building a Pergola: How to Install One Yourself
If you’re interested in installing a pergola, you need to know. Pergolas are usually composed of timber or steel, and they are often constructed with posts and a sloping roof. They can be installed on an existing structure or built from scratch. Because pergolas are large structures, it’s good to hire a contractor or visit a hardware store to purchase the materials you need.
Aluminum pergolas are a great way to give visitors a place to rest and take in the views, and they’re also ideal for hiding unsightly items like electrical equipment. They’re a relatively simple project that almost anyone can accomplish. They’re also a project that you can continue to expand as your needs change—everything you need to know about building a pergola and installing one in your yard.
What you’ll need:
A sturdy piece of wood is buried about 4 feet deep in the ground. This will be needed to support the structure itself. At least two posts will also be required to make two sides of your pergola. If you know that your pergola will be in a shady spot, consider adding wooden lattice over the top of your posts, thereby separating them from the ground and giving them shade. A hammer and nails and a strong scaffold or ladder are all things you’ll probably want so that you can help secure everything once you get something up on top of the canopy support structure. (This is true even when constructing a simple pergola made with PVC.) For the lower portion of your pergola, you may wish to secure it using wooden boards rather than using nails and screws. While not necessary for every installation, brackets are often used for connecting this portion and for helping keep plants from falling through it.
How to build a pergola:
Once you get everything ready for installation, digging a 4-foot deep trench around your perimeter is an essential first step in building any project out of wood or metal. Holes are then drilled into the ground so that the posts can be driven into it. You can use a speed drill and sledgehammer for this step, but if you’re doing it yourself at home, a drill bit with enough power to penetrate the ground is likely your best bet. Next, build some support beams out of lumber. Secure these beams by nailing them together in a framework, and then secure them to your pergola support poles with appropriate lashings.