Most of us spend a good part of our time outdoors on our patio. But if you don’t have an outdoor covered patio, then you miss out on using your space when the sun is hot, or when the occasional summer shower comes your way. It’s tough to entertain, have a cup of tea or lemonade, or sit enjoying the beauty of your yard if you don’t have a roof over your head. No matter what you use your patio for, chances are good some patio cover ideas here are exactly what you are looking for.

collage showing various patios with covers built over them

Whether you are looking for cheap, temporary options,  a full attached cover, or a freestanding option to cover a floating deck, we have tutorials for you that literally anyone can make.

Which Patio Cover Ideas are Right for You?

When trying to decide which patio cover ideas are right for you, there are a couple of things to consider ahead of time. Here are some questions you can ask before you start building a patio cover: 

Do you need protection from the sun, the rain, or both?

If your goal is to create a shady retreat from the scorching sun, options like pergolas with adjustable louvers, stylish shade sails, or retractable awnings might be ideal. On the other hand, if you’re looking to shield your patio from rain showers, solid roofing or waterproof fabrics could be the way to go. Think about your local climate and the conditions you normally experience.

Do you want something temporary to pop up during a party, or something permanent?

If you’re looking for a versatile solution that you’ll only use occasionally, a pop-up canopy or portable gazebo might get the job done. For something more permanent, pergolas, solid roof structures, or even stylish pavilions might be the answer. 

What is your budget? 

For most DIY projects, the best place to start is your budget! Patio covers come in a range of materials and styles – An attached covered patio idea made from wood will cost more than a fabric canopy. It would be difficult to build a pergola on a tight budget, but easy to put up some DIY patio privacy screens that can still give you a nice spot to enjoy the fresh air. 

Once you can answer the above questions, you’ll be ready to take your pick from all the great ideas below! So with that, let’s get into all the wonderful DIY patio cover ideas!

Attached Covered Patio Ideas

Attached covered patios usually have a pergola-type structure that attaches to the house. This type of cover lets you extend your interior living space in a way that adds significant value to your home. It’s also the most involved type of covered patio. However, these first few tutorials take you through the project step by step with tons of photos. You can build one that just provides shade, or that also has a waterproof patio roof as well.

Open-Air Slatted Pergola

Our first attached cover patio idea comes to us from ‘Houseful of Handmade‘. This was made with pressure-treated lumber they painted white, and posts with concrete footings, so it will last. Lots of step by step photos and clear directions. And, a few tips on things they would do differently!

slatted diy patio cover idea

Natural Wood Attached Pergola

If you can get your hands on some nice timber, there’s no need to paint it! A natural wooden patio is a great addition, especially if you’re home is white, or painted a dark color. This video tutorial from Ron Hazelton has all the details you need. 

natural wood attached pergola patio cover idea

Simple DIY Attached Patio Cover

Looking for a basic attached patio cover to dress up a drab space? This tutorial from Home Depot is a great place to start. As you’ll see, it can be decorated, and you could even grow vines up the side for a striking look. Plus, the tutorial shows you how to find the materials you need at Home Depot – too easy!

patio walkway cover decorated for Christmas

Attached DIY Patio Cover with Privacy Screen

If you need a little bit more than just a patio roof, then this wood patio cover with a privacy wall might be the perfect fit. From ‘Sprucing Up Mamahood‘, find complete step by step directions for how to make this pretty pergola. This tutorial comes with tons of tips on building patio cover ideas that will last and doing it right the first time. Their number one tip? Always use cedar or another type of weather-resistant lumber. Always.

pergola patio cover complete with privacy screen, string lights, and furnishings

Attached Patio Cover with a Clear Roof

‘Rain and Pine’ made a similar pergola patio cover that is attached to the house, but theirs is covered with clear corrugated plastic sheets. Sadly, this site is no longer live. If you love this look, simply follow one of the above tutorials, then finish off by adding the clear plastic roof. We love this because not only does this make this patio cover idea rainproof, but it also allows light to enter the interior of the home. You don’t want to build a structure that blocks so much light the indoor area seems dark.

DIY clear roof patio cover idea

Cheap Patio Cover Ideas

Don’t have a lot of money to work with? That doesn’t mean you can’t have a patio! These budget DIY patio cover ideas won’t break the bank, but they’ll still let you spend more time outdoors while offering some protection from the elements. 

DIY Lean-To Patio Cover

Jump on over to ‘The Created Home‘ to find out how they made this super cheap patio cover idea that cost less than $200 to make! And, you could cut that cost in half if you choose not to use the corrugated plastic panels for rain. This appears to be an attached patio cover, but it’s more of a lean-to style. Super easy for even a beginner woodworker to make!

attached lean-to patio cover for outdoor dining area

DIY Patio Cover From Carport Cover

Another cheap patio cover idea comes to us from ‘Simple Made Pretty‘. Needing to cover their concrete patio, but not having a budget to have a contractor come in, they thought outside the box. They used a carport cover to DIY an outdoor covered patio!

outdoor patio cover for dining area using a cheap carport cover

Cheap and Colorful Patio Cover Ideas

From ‘Mi Casa‘, you can literally hang fabric canopies to provide shade. Find tablecloths, shower curtains, or even colored or patterned sheets at the big box stores. I love this colorful patio!

hanging fabric covering a dining patio

Bamboo Reed Patio Cover Ideas

If you already have an uncovered patio, you can add some extra shade and protection to it with a simple patio cover. This budget-friendly option uses a simple bamboo sheet to throw over the roof. You could use the same thing as a patio floor idea if you don’t want to stare at a boring concrete base! Details here from Hunker.

bamboo reed patio cover for shade

Outdoor Covered Patio Ideas

While wooden slats and an uncovered roof give you a nice, sunny, breezy patio, it’s not a practical option in every climate. Whether you need a lighter cover to offer some shade, or a more heavy-duty solution to keep the rain out, these patio cover ideas should help. And, most of the time, building a patio cover isn’t necessary – check these out! 

Retractable DIY Awning For Patio

Make you own retractable covered patio idea with this canopy DIY from ‘HGTV‘. This won’t protect you from rain, (Ok, maybe a light shower…) but it will keep those harsh summer sun rays off. And, you can retract the whole thing for evening parties where you want to see the night sky!

diy retractable patio cover

DIY Patio Cover for Free-Standing Patio

Blesser’ House‘ created this gorgeous freestanding patio cover idea right next to their pool. But you could build this literally anywhere! We love the covered patio roof and the outdoor curtains to adjust shade as needed. It’s a very resort style, making one feel as if they were on vacation every day!

free standing covered patio for pool cabana

Sun Shade Patio Covering Idea

Part of Me‘ used a shade sail, some posts, and some gorgeous string lights to create a patio covering idea that is pretty cheap too. And, she got some really cute planters out of the deal as well!

diy shade sail patio cover

Backyard Covered Patio

This one is super impressive. ‘Catz in the Kitchen‘ not only created this stunning Craftsman style outdoor covered patio, but they also turned the connected slab underneath into a deck. This tutorial has tons of photos to take you through the whole project. And lots of good direction. But this project is no joke, friends. However, when you are done, this could add thousands to the value of your home.

diy covered patio complete with deck and clear roof

Complete your Covered Patio with Mosquito Netting

If you live in a “buggy” area, there’s a good chance the mosquitos are keeping you from enjoying yourself outside. As well as burning citronella candles and planting lemongrass, you can use these DIY pergola and patio ideas with mosquito netting to help keep the pests away.

Cheap DIY Patio Cover With Mosquito Nets

Thrift Diving‘ made this outdoor covered patio from wood beams and awning fabric, and then added mosquito netting! It’s pretty, practical, and magical when you see it lit up at night. Plus, you get to enjoy the outdoors without the bug bites… right? (Don’t forget to check out our post on DIY Mosquito Traps!)

diy pergola with mosquito netting

Easy DIY Patio Mosquito Curtains

Here’s another similar option – this one from Mosquito Nets USA has a great, detailed tutorial with info on everything you’ll need. There are lots of different types of mosquito netting to choose from, so make sure you check out your options (and maybe get your hands on some free samples) before making a final decision! 

patio cover with mosquito net curtains

DIY Outdoor Patio Curtains for Mosquito Protection

You can also find outdoor patio curtains at places like IKEA. These are cheap and give you so much protection against bugs. If you already have a porch or want to add bug protection to your DIY patio cover, this is a great option. This complete tutorial from Bless’er House comes in at less than $100!

white mosquito netting surrounding covered porch

Liven Up Your Outdoor Spaces With These DIY Patio Cover Ideas

These patio cover ideas should get you outdoors any day you want to be there, no matter what the weather! Also check out our posts on DIY Patio Flooring Ideas, and DIY Pergolas!

11 Patio Cover Ideas Anyone Can DIY!


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