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Question DetailsAsked on 7/3/2014

building a patio awning

I am trying to price out the cost for building a wood patio awning for a space of 16' X 20'; 4 posts (4 X 4); and top with cross beams and some type of lattice or separated slats letting in a little air and light.

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1 Answer


Sounds like a DIY job, right ?

Google for patio awning plans or portico plans - LOTS of them at sites like BH&G and Sunset and such, also at TV show sites like THis Old House, and if you google this search phrase - images for patio awning - or - images for pergola - you will find hundreds of ideas and plans, many with material takoffs already done - then just go to your lumber supplier werbsite for pricing of the materials.

IF looking to get done by contractor, then find you like and Searchthe List under Deckand Porch contractors or Awnings. If will be water or snow supporting requires a stamped plan by an architect or civil/structural engineer to get building permit, if just open lattice may or may not need a permit depending on your local building code requirements and $ amount of the improvement, as some areas require a building permit for ANY work exceeding some amount, which can be as small as $500.

I emphatically recommend concreted-in posts 3 feet (or more if required by your local code) into the ground, moment connections or diagonal bracing both ways on top of posts to resist sway.

I would recommend copper treated wood (the green stuff) for all the wood if you can live with the incisions in the wood - can be stained a darker tone if desired or painted, and will last probably twice as long or more than regular wood.

And don't forget to provide tie-downs for lattice or joists - SO many people just tank toenail forgetting wind loads on open frameworks like that can be substantial, ripping pieces off. If using prefab cedar lattice, just nailingit down will NOT do the job - you needto use 2x material over the top as walers screwed down through the lattice into the joists supporting it frombelow, "pinching" it between structural members so it cannot flutter and rip free. Use square drive screws for this so top members can be removed to replace lattice in future if needed, as it willnot last as long as the framework in most cases.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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