Can I construct a terrace roof myself?

7 minutes
Terrassenüberdachung selber bauen STROHBOID

Building a terrace canopy yourself requires a little craftsmanship. A craft project with the intention of creating a visual focal point or constructing a sunscreen and privacy screen can turn out to be more extensive than expected. Although a DIY terrace canopy offers advantages – such as lower costs – there may also be disadvantages, such as issues in terms of stability and durability.

Constructing your own terrace roofing - these are things you should consider

Building the terrace canopy yourself can save costs, as you save on the hourly cost of an expert craftsman. How much you can save by doing it yourself depends, more than anything else, on the material used: A wooden construction is more expensive than plastic – posts made of oak wood are more expensive than Douglas fir and spruce wood. Wood also requires additional care and treatment with wood protection. The highest costs are incurred for steel or aluminum, but they stand out due to their longevity, with high-quality wood that has been well treated and handled not being much inferior in terms of durability.

With a well-equipped toolbox, you usually need little additional tools for the construction of terrace roofing. All materials can be found in the hardware store. Drafting a sketch is usually the first step: Should the terrace canopy be attached to the house? This is the most common method and it provides the terrace roofing with a higher degree of stability while a free-standing pergola requires a suitable substructure and post support.

There is an option to construct the terrace canopy with prefab kits and construction instructions from the online shop. Materials and dimensions have already been calculated, so construction can start immediately. However, kits leave little room for individualization. If you want to construct the terrace canopy without a kit, you will need a mortar mixer, spades, a drill, spirit level and ruler, a saw, hammer, wheelbarrow, clamps, cutter knives and, last but not least, appropriate protective clothing.

However, if you don't have basic crafting skills, you should refrain from attempting any kind of DIY construction, especially if it's just a privacy screen: In this case, a sun canopy or awning is easier to mount.

Terrace roofing from the expert

Compared to DIY constructions, terrace roofing from the expert has several advantages: The craftsman is in charge of planning and execution, takes care of the material and submits permits if necessary. In addition, this approach ensures proper statics and the terrace roofing's longevity. If case of problems arising during construction, the craftsman will be liable. That being said, hiring a craftsman comes at a higher cost and the quality of construction depends on the contractor's reliability and competence.


Terrace roofing installed by an expert the professional convinces with its natural design, ecological production and high stability. The Austrian manufacturer STROHBOID has many years of experience in the construction of gazebos and terrace roofing. Their products come with 25 years warranty on the installed wooden parts and 10 years on the membrane.

DIY terrace roofing - done yourself

In the case of DIY terrace roofing, the first step should be to check the location with regards to the strength of the floor. Once the perfect location for the terrace roof is found, you need to take measurements. Accuracy is important, otherwise there will be delays in the construction process. The roof structure consists of supporting pillars and purlins (crossbeams), which you screw together.

Purlins serve as a support for the rafters, which represent the supporting structure of the roof covering. Depending on the material, the spacing of the rafters should be between 60 cm (wooden roof) and 85 cm (glass roof). To ensure that the terrace canopy allows light to pass through, it is best to use double web panels made of polycarbonate, corrugated PVC or acrylic for the covering. With the addition of a rain gutter and downpipe, you will be able to divert water.

However, the production of such a terrace canopy comes with a number disadvantages: It takes time, is strenuous and, without appropriate knowledge of statics, quality assurance won't be possible. Construction and installation done by an expert such as STROHBOID eliminates those disadvantages.

DIY Terrassenüberdachung-selber-bauen

New terrace roofing - building permits required?

Whether terrace roofing requires a building permit depends primarily on its location: Attached to the house, the terrace canopy is seen as renovation and in this case requires a building permit by the building authority.

It is strongly advised to adhere to the building materials, minimum distances and fire protection regulations stipulated by the authority. These must be adhered to in any case. In addition, additional regulations for garden sheds or carports may exist on municipal level. The appropriate information should be obtained before construction. In some federal states, the building permit may become void if the terrace canopy is mobile or can be removed at any time.

Benefits of a STROHBOID terrace roof

Relying on an expert for the construction of a terrace canopy saves time and nerves. In addition, this ensure that it can defy even the most adverse weather conditions. For special weather conditions (strong storms, lots of snow) STROHBOID offers specially built constructions. Instead of building a terrace canopy yourself, it is best to rely on experts to advise and support you with planning and construction. 


Share now

Fritz Walter

DIPL.-ING. Fritz Walter

Gründer, CTO