How to Build a Simple Porch Bench

Building a porch bench is a great idea, not only for decorative, but also for practical purposes. Rather than buying a ready-made bench, you could build one yourself, by following these basic steps. Apart from making it according to the your wishes, in terms of size, shape and color, you will also save money in the process.

Tools and Materials Needed:

  • 4 wooden planks (4 feet by 4 inches)
  • 8 wooden planks (18 inches by 16 inches)
  • Measuring tape
  • Marker
  • Drill
  • Screws
  • Screwgun
  • Saw
  • Braces
  • Sandpaper
  • Paintbrush
  • Sealer
  • Paint

Step 1: Design and Plan

Start off by deciding in which part of the porch you will place the bench. Depending on the area available, determine the most suitable dimensions to apply when building it. Following these dimensions, draw a sketch, to serve as a general guide. List all the dimensions, and take note of the materials and tools you will be needing. In this particular case the bench will be 4 feet long, 16 inches wide, and 18 inches high.

Step 2: Cutting

Once you have acquired all the tools and materials you need, cut the wood planks in the sizes required for the specific parts. Mark each part, for better recognition and to reduce the possibility of mistakes. It is also very important to use pressure treated wood, so as to ensure better resistance against the weather conditions.

Step 3: Sanding

Once all the wood planks have been cut and marked, use sandpaper to give them a light sanding. This will make them smoother. When ready, wipe them with a damp cloth to lessen the dust particles.

Step 4: Assembling the Seat

Now, start assembling the bench little by little. Start off by making the seat. It is best to use 3 by 1 lumber, so as to have rather thick pieces. Fasten the 4 planks measuring 4 feet by 4 inches, next to one another, by means of screws. The screws should be rather long, so as to fasten the wood planks well. Use a screwgun to facilitate your work.

Step 5: Assembling the Side Panels

Next, assemble the 2 sides. Screw four planks measuring 18 inches by 16 inches together, to form a rectangular frame. Repeat with the other 4 planks. Once the side panels have been assembled,  fasten them to the seat. The side panels will commonly include the legs and the arm rests, but in this case the porch bench will be a simple one, so the arms will not be required. Such a layout will greatly facilitate your work.

Step 6: Assembling the Porch Bench

Now, fasten the seat to the 2 sides. In order to enhance the sturdiness of the porch bench, add braces in specific parts, especially beneath the seat, at the corners, and at the edges. Attach a metal brace across the bottom, and since the bench is rather long, fix a brace in the middle for additional support.

Step 7: Finishing

Since the porch bench will be placed outdoors, it is highly recommended that you coat it with sealer, and if you wish you can paint it as well. This will greatly improve its resistance to moisture and other adverse weather conditions. Make sure to allow each coat to dry well before applying subsequent coats.