The porch is a part of the house that we do not pay much attention to, but in fact it is the first room that our guests see. Therefore, it should be designed in an interesting and functional way. For lovers of tradition, there is no home without a porch. It has been decorating noble estates and peasant huts for so long. A porch overgrown with wild grapes or proudly supported by columns, rural or urban, is both beautiful and rewarding. The porch decorates, highlights and closes the entrance to the house. Therefore, it is important to know about one of the most popular materials for its creation – decking..
Advantages and disadvantages
Decking is great for creating a traditional look. Easy to fit and perfect for any project or garden. Especially if you want to add levels or steps, which is important for the porch.
Decking is suitable for small areas, creating a cozy outdoor seating area, an unusual walkway, or a place for potted plants.
Let’s talk about the most important advantages.
- Longevity. The number one advantage is durability, which is especially important for private homes. A decking board can withstand the harshest weather conditions for decades without any additional treatment or protection. Its non-slip surface makes it ideal for outdoor stairs in winter weather.
- Durability. Composite decking (decking) does not need to be painted or processed. You will find that standard pressure treated wood flooring requires annual or biennial maintenance. Regular wood weathered, tarnished, cracked and split over time.
- Colour. Decking boards come in a variety of colors and textures. You can create a colorful outdoor living space by combining different composite colored boards in one terrace project. Consider combining light deck planks with darker edges to create a dramatic look..
There are also significant disadvantages.
- Price. Price is the most recognized disadvantage of composite products. Composite products cost 50 to 100 percent more than standard lumber.
- Impregnated wood cannot be avoided. Decking boards are often made from pressure treated wood. Pressure treated timber is durable and can withstand wet and icy weather. However, it is processed with chemicals that are known to be toxic. It is also important to note that softwood and hardwood flooring should be treated with oil or varnish to prevent weathering, wear, mold..
- The colors of the decking boards are constant. Composite decking is painted in a consistent color to avoid or reduce maintenance costs. This means that the color or shade cannot be changed. And standard wood flooring can be recoloured, painted or renovated..
- Repair. For environmental and durability reasons, composite flooring (a mixture of two materials, usually wood pulp and a recycled material such as plastic bottles or plastic bags) has emerged on the market. Composite decking proponents advertise this as a much needed development as it helps limit the need to cut trees for new decking. However, they have been found to contain harmful chemicals and cannot be repaired. Despite claims from decorating companies, some composite decking still attracts mold. However, newer modern versions have a shell that prevents mold and stains..
If you are planning to build a wooden deck, you may have noticed that the choice of material for decking is much more difficult than ever before.. Just a few years ago, the only option was wood, which could be two or three species.. Dozens of different flooring materials are available today.
Choosing the right type of decking for your design is a very important decision.. Some people prefer the look of real wood, such as cedar, mahogany, or exotic hardwoods, over artificial materials. Other people are fans of low-maintenance materials that offer a wide variety of colors and textures..
Decking materials research is the key to making the right decision for you and your lifestyle. Decking is made from natural wood, processed lumber, composite lumber and aluminum. Let’s talk about them in more detail.
Popular wood finishes are mahogany and red cedar. Both conifers are prized for their rich color, natural beauty and lack of chemicals or preservatives.. Both woods contain tannins and oils that make them naturally resistant to decay and voracious insects.. When considering any of these flooring options, keep in mind that the level of weather and insect resistance is directly related to the amount of core in the boards. The heartwood grows closer to the center of the tree, is relatively hard and very resistant to rot.
Composite decking is made from a mixture of recycled plastic and wood dust that is converted into long, dense planks. Composite decks are popular because they are virtually maintenance free. Both types are extremely weather resistant, easy to clean, and neither will crack, warp, or rot. They do not require sanding or staining, are available in a variety of colors, and each has a wood grain that looks like natural wood from a distance.
Chances are, you’ve never seen an aluminum plank or even knew it existed, but in a sense, aluminum is an almost ideal flooring material: it doesn’t rot, rust, deform, crack, crack, or twist, extremely resistant to weather conditions, mildew and slip.
Its powder coating lasts almost forever, never flakes or bubbles.
Aluminum doesn’t catch fire, is hated by drilling beetles, and is 100% recyclable. Compared to wood, composite and plastic, aluminum flooring is 3-4 times lighter, but 2-3 times stronger. It can be cut with the same saws and blades that are used to cut wood. Most aluminum decking comes in a variety of colors and wood finishes.
How to do it yourself?
By building a porch, you will add a pleasant look to your home, as well as turn it into a cozy place that your guests first encounter on the street when they come to you. Maybe you can add porch swings and rocking chairs to while away the hours while watching the world. However, there are many practical issues to consider.. Before you start building, you should evaluate the look, style, structure and materials of your home.. Make sure everything matches.
If you’re planning on making your own porch, you’re probably wondering what tools you need to prepare. The good news is that if you are a skilled guy or girl, chances are you already have many of the tools you need to create your porch.. Most of the tools are inexpensive – worth buying even if you only use them for this project.
- Marking and measuring tools such as tape measure, building rulers.
- Drill, shovel, knives and scissors.
- A circular saw.
- Fixing tools for steps.
- Shaping and smoothing tools.
- Self-tapping screws for porch mounting.
Decking your porch will be a significant part of the cost. Wood or composite are common porch flooring materials, but in some cases you may see concrete, stone, or brick semi-circular floors on low porches. The cost of flooring can vary greatly depending on the material.
Along with wooden ones, metal stairs are used in construction for the porch frame. They are versatile and suitable for a residential building. In the manufacture of stairs on a metal frame, ferrous metals are used, as well as steel and aluminum..
Due to their elasticity, metal structures are very less susceptible to damage during ground movement. However, they require more effort from you when building..
To some, metal may seem uncomfortable, but for this there is a metal frame sheathing with wood. The advantage of this process is that it is easy to handle. For example, you can make different types of steps – they just need to be sheathed in different ways. Also, a metal-framed roof is not difficult to build, and it is designed for a vaulted ceiling. Add screens, doors, walls and windows as you like. This porch can be easily adjusted to different heights by adding stairs and extending the support posts.
Porch decoration is the process of decorating the inside and outside of it.. Installing grooved cedar planks is popular but can be costly, especially on large porches. Some builders build fences instead of handrails and use sheathing to match the house..
Openable windows can make your porch more versatile in cold weather. Any finishing can be installed inside and outside the porch.
With regard to finishing materials (flooring, railings, cladding), many people today prefer to spend huge sums on composites, PVC and other materials that do not require much maintenance.. Others prefer to save money and use inexpensive, processed cedar wood flooring. Wood surfaces often need to be pressure washed and sealed once a year. If you prefer a natural look and don’t mind regular grooming, this might be your choice..
When choosing a tree for a porch, one cannot but take into account only the place and design, since any wood available for order is influenced by the climate in which you live.. Select a contractor with experience with forests in your area.
Wood is a natural product, but a sealant must be used to preserve its color and shine..
You may be tempted to use “imitation wood” such as plastic resin or wood-plastic composites. These synthetic and composite materials are virtually insensitive to bugs and rot. However, even modern materials require maintenance in order to maintain their woody appearance. If not covered with paint or opaque stain, wood imitation will always appear fake..
After you finish building your new porch, you need to sand the railings and floorboards, choose paint or stain to tie your look together and give it a polished look.. The right finish will help your porch stay fresh for years to come.. If you choose vinyl, plastic or composite flooring materials, you can opt out of dyeing the materials..
For finishing street stairs, terraces and porches with a terrace board, see the video.