DIY Network

How to Repair a Porch

A damaged porch is dangerous and can cause injury to anyone in the home.

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repairing a damaged porch

Step 1: Prepare the Area

Remove all the pre-existing tongue and groove boards, being careful not to damage the support joists underneath (Image 1). Cut out the mortar around a foundation block, getting rid of it (Image 2).

Step 2: Spread Sand and Mortar

Spread sand and cement mortar mix along the edges of the new block. Tap it flush and remove the excess mortar. Use a jointing trowel to create new mortar lines to match the rest of the foundation.

create new mortar lines to match foundation

Step 3: Add the Steel Mesh

Add a stainless steel mesh front to allow air to circulate completely. Cut it to tightly hug the block. Tap it in with the end of the trowel.

add stainless steel mesh front for air circulation

Step 4: Create the Proper Pitch

Using a level and a string line as a guide, add a new 2x8 foot beam alongside each existing joist. These are the supports for the new flooring. Place the new joist 1/4" higher at the house end to give it a 'fall.' Secure the new piece of lumber to the floor joist (sistering) with a nail gun.

add supports for new flooring

Step 5: Lay the Subfloor

To lay the subfloor, place the cross joist perpendicular to the joist. Start along the outside perimeter and place the cross joists 16 inches apart. Make sure the cross joist is cut to length and lands on an existing truss.

lay the subfloor

Step 6: Lay Tongue and Groove Planks

With the proper pitch in place, lay the tongue and groove composite planks perpendicular to the joists. Lay the first planks at an angle from the house corner to the porch corner. Use a spacer to make sure there is an expansion gap on the cut edges. Add a little construction adhesive for extra bonding.

lay tongue and groove composite planks

Step 7: Tack a Straight Edge

Tack down a temporary straight edge to serve as a guide or fence to brace the circular saw. Uneven ends can be trimmed.

tack down temporary straight edge

Step 8: Paint

Paint the porch. The finished porch looks great, and is safe.

paint the porch as a finishing touch