Around here there are lots of houses that have a front, back, or even side porch or balcony on them. I’m not referring to decks here, but to the old style porch that has tongue and groove flooring. They also are covered with a roof of some sort. These are great places to sit out on or to utilize in some other way that fits the homeowner.
The Porch Problem
The problem with these porches is that the ends of the boards inevitably begin to rot. Unless they are meticulously kept painted, moisture enters the wood and it’s only a matter of time before I get a call to come out and replace or repair the damage. I used to replace them with new wood boards. These would have to be painted top and bottom after installation and then kept up with every few years to keep them from rotting again. Since most homeowners would rather be doing something other than sanding and painting, neglect is the norm rather than the exception, and the cycle continues over the years.
The Porch solution
The good news is that nowadays there are some great alternatives to the traditional fir or mahogany flooring. There are some very nice composite boards made of pvc that look just like the traditional boards. These materials eliminate the need to paint and are rot-free. They can be purchased in a variety of colors and with stainless steel fasteners will last a lifetime. They do require a little extra framing work underneath, but the amount of labor needed to install them is still much less than installing and painting wood boards. Overall, the cost of installing a maintenance free composite porch floor instead of the traditional wood floor is just slightly higher when the painting is factored in. And when the maintenance over the years is considered the composite porch floor is the much better value.
I no longer install wood porch flooring due to these considerations, but use only pvc. When I’m finished, the homeowner has a porch that will please and satisfy for many years to come. They can forget about all the maintenance and enjoy the beauty and quality of their new floor. Give us a call for a free estimate and get started on upgrading your porch now!