Build A Stylish Portico In Five Steps
Adding a portico to your existing porch can create a sense of stylish elegance to your entryway. You can extend the portico over a short distance or encompass a vast area following a walkway.
Building a portico can be as elaborate as you want to make it or you can have a stylish looking portico made of basic wood with some stylish design elements.
Determine where exactly you want your portico and how far it should extend. A good size might be 8-by-10 feet. Locate the center of your porch and mark out the roof line so you can transfer that over to your portico. Clearly mark out spots for posts. You should have 4 per side spaced out at even intervals.
Dig Post Hole and Pour Concrete
Dig the post holes to at least 18 inches. For an elegant touch, build forms that extend 24 to 36 inches above the ground and pour concrete. You can also use pre-formed concrete piers that are shaped with an inward taper.
Mount the post brackets before the concrete sets, or drill into the pre-formed piers.
Set 4-by-4 Posts
Set the 4-by-4 posts onto the brackets and secure with 1/2-inch bolts. Cut to size with the circular saw and then place 2-by-6 boards along the outside perimeter of the portico. Keep even with the tops of the posts and secure with 1/2-inch lag bolts.
Following the porch roof line, lay out the 2-by-6 rafters, on end, and strap the 1-by-1 pieces lengthwise across the portico. Secure the metal roofing with screws and cap off. Seal any place that the two roofs meet with flashing and silicone caulking.
Cut sheet of 1/2-inch plywood to size and secure to the front-facing rafter frame. After covering with roofing felt, you can then either add vertical beam and batten boards, cedar shingles or a rock face with flat river rock and mortar.
Now you can either fill in the ceiling joists or leave them open. To add a decorative element, stain them a dark color or pain them.
Once your basic portico is built, your decorating options are limitless:
- Line the walkway with lights.
- Install rafter lights.
- Decorate beams with wrap-around flower boxes.
- Paint concrete piers.
- Add a wall to one side to prevent leaves or snow from blowing through.