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joetab24 03-09-2010 04:27 PM

Enclosing Porch
I've mentioned in some previous threads a desire to do more with a pergola built by the previous owner of my home. It appears my best course of action is to tear the structure down.

How about enclosing my covered front porch? Here are some pics:

Some neighbors have enclosed their porches with screens. Others have fully enclosed this space and have it heated.

Here is what I'd like to do:

I've never done a job like this, but I think it is doable. What would be my first step? Framing, I assume. Would I use 2 X 4s? Any help is appreciated! Thanks for taking the time to look!

Just Bill 03-10-2010 05:47 AM

Now that sounds like a workable plan. A bit more expensive than pressure treated lumber, build the frames out of cedar. Less expansion/contraction, takes paint or stain well.

joetab24 03-10-2010 04:29 PM

if I were going to enclose this for all 4 seasons, I found a video that I thought broke the job down into manageable steps


I also found these plans:

popular mechanic enclosed porch plans

joetab24 03-10-2010 04:55 PM

I really do not draw well.....are there any programs that I can use to help me illustrate what I want to do with this space?

joetab24 03-10-2010 08:40 PM

alright......this is a work in progress.

i am going to use this space to plan my project. this will help me think through each of the steps. any tips/advice are appreciated greatly.

from watching the video/reading the plans I linked to it appears that I am going to need to do the following:

1. on the front of the porch (facing street) secure knee wall sole plate to concrete. in the video above, the builder attached two 2X4s, the bottom one was pressure treated and used expanding anchors to secure them to the concrete. the 2 Xs were placed on top of a piece of foam insulation.

2. next he installed a top plate 3 feet from the ground and secured studs.

Next Actions/ Questions

1. I have to remove the vinyl cover (see pics) and expose the existing top plate.
2. I need to determine how many windows I am going to add and the spacing needed for the windows. I am thinking 4 or 5. I will list the measurements tomorrow. I am pretty sure the width of the front opening is 15' 8. Will double check.
3. Am I basically going to frame the windows following the image below?

joetab24 03-12-2010 03:45 PM

maybe I won't put this off until next year

joetab24 04-01-2010 10:26 PM

have spent much of the past week thinking about adding a deck to my back patio, which until recently had a rotted pergola on it.

before i start the deck, which i still haven't gotten the wife's ok on, i want to revisit screening in the front porch.

because the bugs in our area (SE PA) get pretty nasty by July, I think I get the most bang for my buck by enclosing this area.

i've familiarized myself with the screen tight product that depot sells and I like what I see.

as far as framing goes, this seems pretty basic. Although for me, it will be a fairly big job since I've only ever framed one wall along my basement stairs.

Found this video on screening a porch

What should I use for framing? The wood in this video looks a 1 X 4?

any advice/tips on framing to screen in a porch are appreciated greatly. Thanks!

joetab24 04-02-2010 07:57 AM

i also found this how to......

here is what i am thinking of doing, front view

rjniles 04-02-2010 01:01 PM

IMO you have a beautiful, inviting front entrance area. I think enclosing it without a very serious thought on the style of the architecture will make it look like a wart on a toad's butt. I personally would not change it but if you do, I would consult an architect.

joetab24 04-02-2010 01:10 PM

i hear ya about the architecture, but a lot of the porches on my block are screened in (if you look at the above pic you kinda see that). and the screen tight system appears to me to preserve the "essence" of the porch. in other words, it's not like i am throwing a bunch of vinyl siding up and encasing the space. i guess it's worth it to me to try this. the wood and screening shouldn't cost that much and, in the end, if it's "wart like" i'll dismantle it. thanks for your honest feedback :)

joetab24 04-08-2010 05:24 PM

vinyl soffit cover
as mentioned in a prev thread, planning on framing and screening my front porch.

to do the framing, do i have to remove this vinyl completely?

if i do have to remove all of this, is there a way to do it that won't damage the material? in case i have to put it back for some reason.

thanks for your help:)

joetab24 04-10-2010 10:26 PM

a few people have told me that it would be ok to add the top plate to the existing material as long as I am nailing into something solid. what do you think?

also, should I add weep holes (?) in the bottom plate? someone mentioned that, regarding any water that may get in.

kwikfishron 04-11-2010 09:38 AM

199 Attachment(s)
You don’t want to nail a plate to vinyl soffit. If it’s in your way, get rid of it. The soffit should be loosely nailed with roofing nails and can usually be removed without tools by just snapping the nail flange over the nail head , you‘ll see what I mean once your looking at it. Start were the last piece of the run is (probably a cut piece) once you get that one out the rest will be easy. Don’t worry if you have to destroy the first piece after that salvaging the rest should be no problem.

There should defiantly be a way for water to escape a screened porch I don’t know about weep holes though. I’d hold the whole thing up 1 ” having your plate connected to a series of blocks along the bottom with big enough openings so you can hose out without getting plugged up.

joetab24 04-23-2010 11:33 AM

about to start this project.

if you take a look at the columns, they have a stucco finish. is it ok to put a 2X4 right onto the column?
I am going to use a powder actuated gun, which i know will secure the wood. But am I going to have a hard time getting it plumb?
The other surface that I am questioning is to the left of my front door. The concrete is somewhat uneven. Will this create a problem?

joetab24 04-23-2010 09:32 PM

as a follow up, just doing a dry run this evening to see how things lay out, when I placed the 2X4 against the column there was some contact with the stucco column on the bottom and top of the stud, but a gap that varied in size; it was as large as 3/4" in some section. should i just put some molding over this opening?

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