patio cover materials and methods
I've just moved in to my first house and am lining up all the little projects that need to be done. There are a few I hadn't anticipated! One is the ugly patio cover. It is fifty by twelve feet simple post and rafter. The rafters were, it seems, properly attached to the house and are angled so that water runs down and doesn't pool. Flashing was applied from the roof to the rafters, so there's no water leaking there. But the cover is simple unpainted plywood on one half and old two by two's with four inch gaps on the other. The plywood side is very sloppily covered with roofing tiles and neither the roof or the patio cover has a gutter. So, the first time it rained last week, I got asphalt roofing tile material all over the ground and cement. The plywood is ugly, but I do need some kind of cover.
I've seen the polycarbonate sheets that are supposed to block UV. I think they would be just right. I've got some carpentry skills, but I have no idea how to get the stuff up there CORRECTLY. It doesn't look sturdy enough to crawl around on and I know it has to be caulked and screwed down. I also am sure I need to put the matching plastic flashing from the roof to the patio cover. The only way I can figure to do that is to crawl up on the patio cover.
Won't it break? If I lay a piece of plywood across it, will that protect it sufficiently?
As long as I'm up there, I'd like to put in a gutter system of some kind. Ideally, the water would go down one of the posts and end up in a rain barrel. I know how to do this on a normal structure, but I'm not sure how to attach a gutter to a roof of polycarbonate.
I've been all over online looking for good instructions. The big box store guys were happy to sell me the stuff but didn't know how to put it up there, so I didn't buy it. Are there better products out there? Ideas? I need to protect the area from rain, and I'd like to let the sunlight in as well.
Post a picture of what you have now.
pictures of current patio cover
It took a while to get these. My camera battery was out of juice. :) I'm working on the walls and stuff so things are a bit of a mess.
The roof slants very very slightly. I think (hope!) it's enough to let the water run off.
Home Depot carries the Suntuf polycarbonate sheets I'm looking at. They are 26 inches wide and ten feet long. I think one sheet would cover one area rafter to rafter, so I might be able to reach across the sheet to power screw the sheets in as I go. I'd have to bridge the section between the roof and the house. They make a product that is supposed to do that, but it gets lousy reviews so I'm not sure it's the way to go. And I would HAVE to climb up on the polycarbonate to do that.
I can't figure out the best way to put a gutter system in, either.
Any ideas would be helpful.
I'm disinclined to pull the whole structure down at this time. The house inspector pronounced the pillars and rafters 'sound' so I'm looking for a slightly more aesthetic covering. The patio cement is severely pitted, obviously from rain, so a roof is going to be necessary by the time the rains start, this winter.
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