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Wood Posts In the Ground Will Rot!

One of the questions we get asked quite frequently when we build our pergolas and patios covers is: do we put the wood posts in the ground? Answer: Absolutely not, they will without a doubt rot!

Other companies will tell you that putting posts in the ground makes for a more stable structure but without question, in the long run the posts will rot and then you will have a BIG problem. It is certainly easier to put them in the ground because then you do not have to put in the support bracing, additional hardware or costly anchor bases and time to make the structure stable. However, posts in the ground is not the answer, posts should be placed on concrete piers or footings and then the posts attached to these footings with anchor plates so that the posts will not be in touch with water.

We get plenty of calls from customers who have leaning pergolas and the number one cause it rotting posts. Let's look at the example below. If you note in the picture, this is a pergola for a community garden, the posts were placed in the ground. Notice the lean! Plenty of families picnic under this pergola. Notice the scaffolding we built to support the pergola.

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Leaning pergola due to rotten posts in ground

Ok, in the picture below note that the rotten posts have been removed and the pergola now rests entirely on the scaffolding we built. Notice on the bottom of the picture you will see a concrete square. This is the footing we poured that was some 3 feet deep and 18 inches wide. The new posts will be secured and rest on these piers.

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Pergola with no posts supported by scaffolding


Here is a picture of the finished pergola, safe and secure with new posts secured to concrete piers which will provide safe enjoyment for the years to come. If you look closely at the bottom of the posts you will see the piers

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Pergola with new posts resting on piers