Your DIY Shade Sail Installation Questions, Answered

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September 16th, 2020 · Published to Shade Sails by Steve Lewis

So you’re looking to install a shade sail. Believe it or not, installing a shade sail is a lot easier than you might imagine. You don’t even need to have any experience with tools to complete the task. Best of all, DIY shade sail installation can literally save you hundreds of dollars.

If you’re up to the challenge, then you will want to read this article. Today, we address the most asked questions about DIY shade sail installation.

Are shade sails easy to install?

Let’s start with the burning question everyone wants to know – are shade sails easy to install? They can be. It really depends on two things; the design of the shade sail and the availability of your fixing points. If you have a simple square, rectangle, or triangle shade sail, and have strong supports points for fixings (i.e., a fence, roof, pergola, side of a building etc.), your shade sail will be easy to install.

On the other hand, if you have multiple sails, complex design and need to install posts for fixing, then the installation process will be much more complicated and may best be left to professionals.

How do you attach a shade sail to a house?

A house is almost always used to fix at least one side of a residential shade sail in place. In this case, you will need to fix two fixing points to the rafter or facia of a house and either two fixings or one fixing parallel to this depending on whether you have a square, rectangle or triangle sail. Make sure they are fixed to something robust such as a patio, tree, fence, etc. If there is nothing to fix to, posts will be required.

The fixings should be positioned at the length of the sail + 10% for tensioning. So, if you have a 5mt sail, it one fixing will be at zero and the other at 550cm. Then, it’s as simple as attaching a chain to each of the fixing points, a turnbuckle to each of the shade sail points, and then, connecting the chains to the turnbuckles.

How much does it cost to install a sail shade?

The cost to install a shade sail will vary depending on whether you have existing structures to use as fixing points or if posts are required. If you have a fence, roof, pergola, side of a building etc. that you can use, then you only need to pay for the attachments (i.e. turnbuckles, D Shackle, S Hook, eye screw, chain, etc.). Turnbuckles are around $15, D Shackle $6, S Hook $1, eye screw/bolt $7, chain $20, so you should be able to get everything you need for $100-200.

If you do have to install posts, then you will be paying considerably more. You’ll need the attachments mentioned above, as well as 125mm treated timber posts and cement. Posts are around $50 each, cement (20Mpa) $8 etc.

How deep do shade sail posts need to be?

When we talk about the depth of a shade sail, we are referning to the under-ground depth to dig for footings. The footing is most important as it determines the strength of the post.

For a 3-metre shade sail, a 400mm square, 800mm deep footing is recommended. For a 5-metre or larger shade sail, a 400mm square, 1200 deep footings is recommended.

Use these measurements as a reference only. Follow the instructions provided by the shade sail manufacture for your installation.


Taking on a DIY shade sail installation will save you hundreds in service fees and is much easier than you may imagine. As such, we get asked about shade sail installations often. The most common questions include whether shade sails are easy to install, how they are attached to a house, how much they cost to install, and how deep the posts have to be.

These pressing questions are answered in this blog post.

If you are looking to save money, then contact Global Shade to enquire about our DIY Shade Sails. We provide everything you need for an easy-breezy DIY shade sail installation and will provide all the instructions required.

Call us today on 1800 724 407 or click here to find out more.

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