Enclosed porches were once only the domain of the wealthy. These enclosures were excellent places to entertain large parties outdoors, even in inclement weather. Now, it is not unusual for a home of any price range to have an enclosed porch. They are not only a great place entertaining, but can provide a family with a nice place to enjoy the outdoors on a regular basis. They can also provide extra space to a small home.
Enclosed porch plans are readily available to homeowners, who may wish to build the enclosure themselves or to give the plans to a contractor who will do the bulk of the work. Plans are available in plan books, and home improvement stores, and they can also be found online.
Enclosed porch plans detail the area that is to be enclosed, while keeping as much of the original look of the house as possible. An enclosed porch should blend with the style of the house. An enclosed porch may be built in the front or the back of the house. It can also be built as a wraparound porch that goes around the sides of the home.
The location of the enclosed porch is usually chosen with an eye to the local climate. Wrap-around porches are a popular because it will be comfortable during different times of each day. When building an enclosed porch that will not wraparound, the hottest and coldest parts of the day must be kept in mind.
In southern climates, homeowners may wish to have their enclosed porch built away from the morning sun. In colder climates, and enclosed porch angle toward the morning sun may be very welcomed.
Features of Enclosed Porches
An enclosed porch in general has at least one wall that is an outer wall of the home. The rest of the enclosure is made up of screens or windows or a combination of both. These allow mostly unobstructed views of the outdoors.
Many enclosed porches are built for the purpose of keeping the outdoors as close as possible. This may entail a higher route that will not obstruct the nature views, or as few supports as possible. Enclosed porch plans attempt to bring the outdoors indoors but with none of the hassles involved with being outside.
Screens and windows keep out insects. The more windows an enclosed porch has, the more weatherproofing is provided to the porch. In very cold climates there may be more windows installed on the porch than screens. In warm or mild climates the walls may be entirely made of screens with no need for windows.
One place that homeowners don’t often think of when they commission and enclosed porch is problems that can occur with the floor of the porch. Enclosed porch plans often take of vulnerabilities in the floor into account. With most of the enclosure guarded by screens and windows, the floor is a vulnerable area for insects.
If you’re worried about insects it is possible to install screens under the floorboards of the porch. In some areas, the weather is a much larger factor than insects. In these cases, special flooring may be used that is more airtight an insulating than standard porch flooring. With the right porch plans, the enclosure will be a comfortable addition to the home for years to come.