My wife and I are planning on replacing our current porch. The current porch has a concrete base which has sunk in along the front end and pulled everything else out of line.
Once we have something solid to put it on between myself and a couple of friends have the experience to be comfortable framing everything and putting a roof on. However, I've never done a project requiring decisions for depth of footings and beam strengths so I thought I'd seek a little guidance.
The dimensions will be 24' by 9'6" with one of the 24' sides being up against the house. I would like to build it as freestanding with only the roof and floor tied into the house. The reason is it's an older home and I don't want to make it hold up any more weight. The original porch is also entirely supported by its concrete base.
That's the background. Here are my actual questions if you've read this far.
I'm planning on a pier and beam foundation for the deck with the posts for the roof supported by the beam. Because of service lines coming into the house I might only be able to put three piers on each side with a 12' span between piers.
My questions revolve around choosing what size and type of pier would support a porch of this size and what size beam could make the span assuming 6 piers and a 12' span. For the beam I was planning on using 3 2x8s with the outer two being PT.
Another idea I had was instead of piers using 4x6 posts resting on concrete footings but somebody said such short posts might have cracking problems.
Any help or suggestions would be appreciated. It's at least a month out but I want to have it all planned out before we get started.