Pop-up canopies are simple and inexpensive, and they can be used at just about any type of fair, festival, carnival, concert, trade show, or similar event. However, if you are going to use a pop-up canopy at an outdoor event, it is important that it be kept weighted to prevent problems with the wind. A wind-blown canopy can function much like a kite, and you could be held liable if your canopy is permitted to blow around the premises. The good news is that you can build your own set of canopy weights that are effective and inexpensive. Below is how you can construct a simple set of canopy weights in just a few hours:

What you will need

  • 4-inch PVC pipe - length of 8 feet
  • 4-inch PVC end caps - quantity of 2
  • PVC cement
  • Construction sand - three 50-pound bags
  • 1-inch eye bolts - quantity of 4
  • Drawer pulls with screws - quantity of 4
  • Electric drill with 1/8-inch and 1/16-inch bit
  • Hacksaw
  • Measuring tape
  • 100-grit sheet of sandpaper

Step-by-step procedure

1. Cut the pipe to length - With a hacksaw, cut an 8-foot length of 4-inch PVC pipe into four 2-foot lengths. Use a sheet of 100-grit sandpaper to remove the plastic burs from the edges of the pipe sections.

2. Build the canopy weights - Take one section of pipe and use PVC cement to attach an end cap to one end of the pipe. Next, fill the pipe with clean construction sand and cement the other end cap to the opposite end of the pipe. Drill a hole in the end of one pipe cap using a 1/8-inch bit and screw a one-inch eye bolt into the hole. Be careful not to screw too far and risk cracking the plastic. Finally, attach a drawer pull approximately halfway from each end of the pipe; you will need to use a 1/16-inch bit to drill holes for mounting the drawer pull.

Once you complete one canopy weight, repeat these steps for the remaining three weights.

3. Attach the canopy weights - After constructing the canopy weights, it is time to hang them. Attach a length of 1/4-inch nylon rope to one of the eye bolts on one weight, then route the rope up one leg of the canopy, across the middle and down the opposite leg. Tie the free end of the rope to another weight after pulling up the slack. Repeat this step on the opposite legs with the remaining two weights.

If your canopy does get blown away, you can buy an EZ up replacement canopy and make sure to use weights to prevent any problems in the future.