Structurally, building a pergola is pretty much suspending beams and rafters atop some posts. Installing beams are especially important because these define the boundaries of the pergola and are sort of the “foundation” of the its canopy. The rafters are eventually set on top of them so it’s important that the beams be installed correctly and securely.
The video below shows how Peter our expert builder installs the pergola beams while building an attached pergola. If you want step-by-step instructions, you can visit our earlier blog posts on installing beams and bottom chords. You may notice that the instructions are a bit different from what Peter does in the video.
We did mention that he’s an expert builder and therefore possesses skills that allow him to do things differently — we recommend that a home builder install posts before you add your beams, but as you can see here Peter has equipment to brace the beams prior to the addition of the posts.
Learn how to install box gutters. Or find out how to add in barges and ridges.