How to Design and Build a Pergola on a Deck

Your deck is one of your favorite places to spend time outdoors, but lately you’ve felt it’s missing something. Introducing the shade and style of a gorgeous Amish pergola! Designing and building a pergola on your existing deck is one of the most effective ways to bring new life to your outdoor living space. We’re here to help — read our blog and learn how to design and build a pergola on a deck just like the pros!

Pergolas provide partial sun coverage and a distinct upscale look to any deck or outdoor entertaining space — and they have become the in-demand accessory for outdoor spaces across America. At The Backyard Showcase, we handcraft and ship the highest quality pergola kits nationwide. Discover just how easy it is to build a pergola over a deck, and start shopping today!

6 Steps to Design and Prepare a Pergola over a Deck

pergola over a deck

“Measure twice, cut once,” is what people say. That wisdom holds true when you build a pergola over a deck. We recommend knowing exactly how and where you plan to build your new pergola before you order. Let’s walk you through how to design and prepare a pergola over a deck!

1. Decide How You’ll Use the Pergola

Knowing what type of area you want your pergola to accentuate helps you make a ton of choices about the pergola you choose and its size. While there’s no right or wrong way to bring this outdoor style to your deck, these are some of the most popular ways to use a pergola:

  • Seating area coverage
  • Over top of your grill station
  • Covering a hot tub
  • Framing or covering your dining area

2. Choose Attached or Free Standing

The next big decision to make is whether your pergola will be attached to your house or free standing — and both options are great. A free standing model allows you complete freedom to build the pergola in any number of places around your deck. On the other hand, an attached pergola creates the feeling of being an extension of your house. Both options can make for a great pergola over a deck.

3. Pick the Right Pergola Size

Once you know how you’ll use your pergola and the type you’re building, you’ll want to finalize your pergola’s size. First, you’ll need to measure the area where you’ll build. Our pergolas are sold in standard 2-foot increments and some of the most common sizes we sell are: 8’ X 12’ and 10’ X 12’. However, we can always craft a completely custom pergola for you.

4. Select Your Pergola Material

Your picture-perfect pergola should be coming into focus now — and this is probably the most important design choice in the pergola design process. The material you choose has the biggest influence on the price, lifespan, and maybe even style of your new pergola. The most commonly used materials are vinyl, pressure-treated wood, and cedar. Vinyl pergolas are the most expensive up front but have the longest lifespan, while pressure-treated lumber options are the least expensive, but don’t last quite as long.

One of the other common ways that homeowners choose the material is by matching their deck material to that of the pergola. That means if you have a luxury vinyl or composite deck, you’ll want to pair it with a vinyl pergola — while a wood deck is a great match for a wood pergola.

Still deciding? Read our in-depth blog about the best pergola material!

5. Pick the Color

The last thing you need to decide before you order is the color or stain of your new pergola. This choice will likely make a big visual impact on your outdoor entertaining space. Our vinyl pergolas commonly come in a clean white shade, but our wooden pergolas have a wider range of colors, as they can be either painted or stained.

Our wood stain colors include:

  • Clear
  • Walnut
  • Cinder
  • Rustic Cedar
  • Cedar Mahogany

wooden pergola stain colors

Once you have your dream pergola planned out, you can place your order and it will come pre-stained or painted to your specifications. Start shopping our Amish pergolas for sale right now!

6. Start Building the Pergola

After your Backyard Showcase kit arrives, you’re ready to start building a pergola over your deck. For most homeowners, the entire process takes between 4 to 5 hours and requires basic power tools that most people have. We include easy-to-follow instructions along with ALL of our pergola kits.

If you have any questions about how to build a pergola on a deck or want to know exactly what power tools you need, we recommend you reach out to one of our project managers. Contact us with any questions you may have!


The Amish Quality Difference

Pergolas are quickly becoming the in-demand outdoor living structure, and as a result, you can find pergolas for sale at more places than ever. However, not all pergolas are built to the same quality as a handcrafted Amish pergola.

The pergolas you buy at a big box store won’t have the same quality look, the same long lifespan, or any of the custom options. While the initial price will be a bit cheaper, you’ll be left disappointed by the look and the performance of the piece.

Learn more about what a quality pergola should really cost.

Start Designing Your Deck Pergola at The Backyard Showcase

When you’re ready to build a pergola on your deck, The Backyard Showcase is the team to trust. Whether you want to buy your pergola online, have a conversation with one of our experienced exterior designers, or stop by our backyard showroom, we’d love to help.

Start the conversation today to get prices and to learn how easy it is to build a pergola on a deck!

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