Need advice on front porch


Old 11-20-17, 09:34 AM
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Need advice on front porch

I posted this in another thread, but I can't seem to find it, so I'm starting a fresh one...

I'm having a new driveway and sidewalk poured next week. The sidewalk will connect my front porch to the driveway (porch has roof overhead). Issue is the driveway is only 2" below the surface of the porch, so in order to have a significant step-up to the porch, I need to slope the sidewalk down about 2" to 3" over 6 feet to result in a 4" to 5" step. I don't like the idea of sloping downward this much towards my porch, just to step back up. Some questions I have:

-What is the minimum step rise I should go with? Is 4" too shallow/tripping hazard?

- Would it look funny if the driveway and porch were at the same level (no step)? There would still be a step-up from the porch into the house of 8". However, the sidewalk would be about 6" above grade on the downhill side and also a couple inches higher than the siding on the house (although the porch is as well).

- Another option I am considering is having 3" of concrete poured over top of the existing concrete to build the porch up so I don't have to slope the sidewalk. However, this would involve cuttings posts, removing siding and trim, re-applying trim, and I'd have to worry about the new concrete developing cracks (wouldn't I?)

- I am also considering not sloping at all, resulting in a 2" step, then encapsulating the porch with wood decking on sleepers. However, I'm not sure how I feel about a wooden front porch on a Victorian style home. Porch is relatively small--8 feet wide by 6 feet deep.

Any feedback, suggestions, etc would be greatly appreciated. I need to decide what I'm going to do asap.

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Old 11-20-17, 10:34 AM
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The main thing is for all the risers to be the same height! IMO 4" would be the minimum you'd want to use. Depending on your code, 7.75" or 8" is the max. I wouldn't think there would be any issues with a 3" overlay of concrete.
Old 11-20-17, 10:41 AM
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I understand. There would be only a step-up from the sidewalk to porch (not technically a "step"), then a step-up (again not a step) of 8" into the house 7 feet away.

Issue with the veneer is I'd have to have all the posts cut, a bunch of trim removed and replaced, flashing installed, etc. Not sure I want to deal with all of that, as well as the expense. I'm already over budget. I suppose I can go with the downward slope for now and can always do something different in the future if it bugs me that much.

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