How To Build A Pergola

A pergola is a great way to enjoy your backyard and give your outdoor space some added design. If you need a custom pergola in Vista, CA visit this page here. We service San Diego County and surrounding areas. If you’re handy enough and have the time, you might just build one yourself. Here’s a step-by-step guide.

2x4's common wood for pergola

Select wood devoid of bows or crowns for easier installation.

What You’ll Need:

4×4 – 10 foot pressure treated posts (4)

2×4’s – 10 foot (at least 8, more if sufficient shade is required)



4″ Lag screws and washers (4)

3″ inch exterior screws

Exterior paint




Backyard wood pergola

Basic wood pergola.


  1. Measure your posts first. They will be 8 feet apart on center. Dig a 12 inch square hole a minimum of 18 inches deep. Center and level post on both verticals. Pour cement and water and hold until hard enough to let go.
  2. Decide what kind of cut ends or corbels you want for the cross beams. When the cement has dried and the posts are sturdy, you are ready to fasten the beams. You’ll want to install 2 parallel beams so you can set the next pieces  on top of those. Use another pair of hands to help you hold each beam up and into place. There should be about a foot of hangover on each side. Use a level and fasten with a lag screw and washer into the 4×4. 
  3. Now evenly measure and space out the next row of wood pieces for the roof. The more wood you use, the more shade your pergola will provide. Install the hurricane brackets first, with the facing metal on the inside. Fasten wood with screws.
  4. If all has went well, you should be out of the building phase, and into finishing. Paint your pergola with a primer first and 2 coats of paint for maximum protection from the elements. Allow proper drying to occur between each coat.