A small porch and stairs can add value to a home and bring years of enjoyment to the owner. Although the project is somewhat challenging to complete, it should take 3 or 4 days to complete a 4 foot by 8 foot porch without a roof that fits most building industry standards for a small porch. It is a level porch, attached to the side of a home about 2 feet off the ground with 2 stairs.
The following tools and materials will be needed to finish this project: drill, screwdriver bit, post hole digger, 6 – 3 foot long 4-by-4 foundation posts, level, tape measure, carpenter’s square, pencil, clamps, saw, paintbrush, protractor, L brackets, screws, 2 – 8 foot long exterior 2-by-4’s, 5 – 4 foot long exterior 2-by-4’s, 2 – 2 foot long exterior 2-by-4’s, 2 – 4 foot by 8 foot sheets of exterior ½ inch plywood, concrete mix, and exterior paint.
Pull the building permits from the municipal building department.
Expose the structural siding on the porch side of the building to check for rot. Replace any rotted pieces. Measure the area for the porch and stairs and write measurements.
Mark on the ground points at each corner and in the middle of each side with paint.
Dig a hole at each of the marked points for the foundation posts to 1 foot depth. Set the foundation posts in holes. Fill the holes with concrete mix.
Measure and mark the 8 foot long 2-by-4’s at 2, 4, and 6 foot points in length from the top end of each board to begin the porch frame.
Attach the 8 foot long 2-by-4’s to two of the 4 foot long 2-by-4’s at 90 degree angles with L brackets and screws at the ends of the 8 foot long pieces, making a 4-by-8 foot box porch frame.
Attach three of the 4 foot long 2-by-4’s into the box parallel to the outside edges of the box at the 2,4, and 6 foot marks on the 8 foot long 2-by-4 sections as floor supports. Use one L bracket and screws on each side of the 2-by-4’s to attach these into the box.
Attach the porch frame to the foundation posts using screws.
Measure and mark 45 degree angle measurements on all four ends of the 2 foot long 2-by-4’s. This will set angle for the stairs to go up from the ground to the porch floor.
Cut the 2 foot long 2-by-4’s on all 4 ends along the 45 degree angle marks to start the stairs.
Place the ends of the 2 foot long 2-by-4’s on the ground parallel to the ground and meeting the porch frame. Set the 2 foot long 2-by-4’s three feet apart for the stairs.
Attach each of the 2 foot long 2-by-4’s to the porch frame using screws.
Attach the porch and stair frame to the building structure using screws.
Use the clamps, pencil and carpenter’s square to make a horizontal and a vertical lines for cuts for the stairs at each point where they are being put in place. Set the carpenter’s square, straight vertical and horizontal, clamped to each of the 2 foot long 2-by-4’s where the stairs are being placed. Mark straight lines using pencil.
Use a saw to cut along the vertical and horizontal lines to place stairs.
Use a level to ensure that the stairs are level. Cut away along the vertical and horizontal lines until the stairs are level.
Measure and cut plywood to cover the frame of the porch and stairs.
Attach plywood to the frame of the porch and stairs using screws.
Paint the entire porch and stairs to protect them from the elements.
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