Author Topic: Are we crazy for wanting to change the footprint of our porch?  (Read 568 times)

meerkat

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The walls of our porch are in sad shape and need to be redone at some point, it will probably be our next major house project. I'm trying to figure out if it might be possible to change the footprint of our screened in area (roof will remain the same). There's a few complicating factors - all the incoming electrical/internet/cable wires, a random half wall with a light (the wiring for that must be under ground), the poured concrete inside the porch and the small patch outside the porch are two discrete things and removing the wall between then will probably need patching. When it rains, it comes at least a foot into the porch if there's any breeze at all (usually there is) so the water pools inside the wooden wall right now, but I doubt that's fixable without changing the roof itself which is probably going to get expensive quick. If it matters, the window goes into the garage. Electrical stuff will definitely, definitely be hired out.

In an ideal world with an unlimited budget, I'd expand the screened in area toward the air conditioning unit and make it wide enough to accommodate a hot tub, and the wiring that's currently going to the corner would reroute to nearer the air conditioning unit. Even if we end up not doing that, a larger screened outdoor area would be nice. I know enough money can solve any problem, but would this be a very expensive/complicated project to take on?

Bah, I have measurements but they're at home and I am not. I'll add them to this post later.

All thoughts, conjectures, and crazy ideas welcome since we're very much at the wishful thinking pre-planning stage.

meerkat

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Re: Are we crazy for wanting to change the footprint of our porch?
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2019, 12:53:50 PM »
Additional picture, since all three were too big to fit on one post together.

calimom

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Re: Are we crazy for wanting to change the footprint of our porch?
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2019, 08:35:53 PM »
What a sweet house! I'm guessing the screened porch acts as an outdoor room a lot of the time? It sounds as though you can DIY a lot of the expense and  cash flow the rest? Is it possible there could be dry rot problems close to the house when the rest of the porch is taken down? Sorry for all the questions, just trying to get an overall picture of the project. And it sounds as though the expansion to include a hot tub is not quite in the cards. I can relate.

meerkat

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Re: Are we crazy for wanting to change the footprint of our porch?
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2019, 06:57:04 AM »
I'm guessing the screened porch acts as an outdoor room a lot of the time? Weather allowing, yes.

It sounds as though you can DIY a lot of the expense and cash flow the rest? That's what I'm hoping, depends on what we end up planning to do.

Is it possible there could be dry rot problems close to the house when the rest of the porch is taken down? The house is cinder block so I'm hoping not? I don't know much about building/construction things though.

Sorry for all the questions, just trying to get an overall picture of the project. And it sounds as though the expansion to include a hot tub is not quite in the cards. I can relate.
No problem! Right now we can either fit a hot tub on our porch, or we can have anything else on the porch and be able to access our back yard.

Fishindude

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Re: Are we crazy for wanting to change the footprint of our porch?
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2019, 07:58:27 AM »
From the looks of the roof lines that porch was not part of the original construction and added later.   If you continue going outward at the same pitch you will not have enough height to go very far.   Anything significant is going to take a drastic rebuild, new roof lines, etc.    If you are in an area that doesn't get snow and ice, you might be able to go with a flat rubber roof and expand the footprint of enclosed porch without much problem.

If you are serious about doing something get a professional builder involved, have them look at the the project and give you some ideas and rough budgets.   Be willing to pay them for their time and effort in the event you don't do the project and use them.

oldmannickels

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Re: Are we crazy for wanting to change the footprint of our porch?
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2019, 08:05:50 AM »
My cheap ideas. Get rid of the wooden walls and just have the support posts and then rest all screen.

I'm guessing the rain mostly comes into the big window? For that I would plan some sort of cool shade sail setup that connects to the roof and maybe do a paver outdoor patio area there.

No ideas on how to extend the roof or put in a hot tub.

meerkat

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Re: Are we crazy for wanting to change the footprint of our porch?
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2019, 08:12:06 AM »
From the looks of the roof lines that porch was not part of the original construction and added later.   If you continue going outward at the same pitch you will not have enough height to go very far.   Anything significant is going to take a drastic rebuild, new roof lines, etc.    If you are in an area that doesn't get snow and ice, you might be able to go with a flat rubber roof and expand the footprint of enclosed porch without much problem.

The roof doesn't necessarily have to be built out over the roof extension. I was thinking maybe we could do something like a bird cage screen. I know messing with the roof at all will get pricey quickly. Also we have a fan on the existing porch which helps a lot with keeping it comfortable, but keeping the ceiling/roof more open on an extension would probably help with air flow.


If you are serious about doing something get a professional builder involved, have them look at the the project and give you some ideas and rough budgets.   Be willing to pay them for their time and effort in the event you don't do the project and use them.

Yeah part of why I posted the question here is to kind of figure out how much of a pipe dream this is, or if we get really excited about taking on a major project that would be GC-worthy (and worth the money since it won't improve our house's value enough at this point to be considered an "investment" or anything).

My cheap ideas. Get rid of the wooden walls and just have the support posts and then rest all screen.

I'm guessing the rain mostly comes into the big window? For that I would plan some sort of cool shade sail setup that connects to the roof and maybe do a paver outdoor patio area there.

No ideas on how to extend the roof or put in a hot tub.

Yep, the wooden wall needs to go. I was thinking of doing all screen and maybe also a PVC railing on the lower section (partly for aesthetics but mainly to prevent our small child and dog from making their own doors). 

Yes, the rain mainly comes in that way. The way you're describing it, would the shade go on the outside? I guess it'd have to so the water drips would stay off the porch, like a reverse shower curtain.

LifeHappens

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Re: Are we crazy for wanting to change the footprint of our porch?
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2019, 08:26:55 AM »
Looking at your photos, it appears the screen room is a diagonal between the "L" of the house. I think it would be possible to extend the screen area by squaring it up, so to speak. You could replace the walls with a combination of screen and either aluminum kick plates or this product called Florida Glass, which is basically screen with a plastic coating. Either of those would contain the dog and kid.

The one aspect you probably can't DIY on something like that is the concrete footer for the expanded screen area. Assuming you want to build to code, it has to be something like 1'x1'x1' (not sure exactly). Also, the screens have to be properly anchored with heavy duty I-bolts sunk into the concrete and attached to the aluminum frame with wire cable.

Getting a pro to do the whole thing may not be as expensive as you fear. We just had an 8'x20' screened lanai with a solid aluminum roof done for $5400 including permits.