Porches and canopies



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A porch is more than just a means of protecting your front door from the excesses of our British weather. A well-designed canopy can make a home more welcoming, increase kerb appeal and make it stand out from the crowd. And porches are becoming especially popular with owners of new build properties, offering useful extra shelter where hallways may often be cramped or even non-existent. 

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Advantages of a porch and canopy kit

  Two porches  

Range of styles

Several styles of porch are available. Take your pick from apex and flat roof designs, classic gallows style brackets or full length spindle kits to create an attractive balustrade for a more enclosed, sheltered structure.

Shorter balustrades are also available. These are intended to be mounted on dwarf walls to match the style of your property.

Finishing touches such as fascia boards, slates and tiles are not included, leaving you free to choose the ones that best match your home. A finial is also available for those keen to add a final flourish.


Ready to assemble

Each canopy kit is delivered flat-packed, and consists of a pinewood frame which is supplied unfinished for you to paint or stain in the colour of your choice. 

Suitable for fitting by professional tradespeople and skilled DIY enthusiasts alike, a big advantage of these porch kits is the ease and speed of assembly. 

You don't have to spend time designing the canopy, pre-drilling components or carrying out precise joinery cuts, as these have already been done. Neither do you have to spend hours crafting joints to achieve a professional finish. Simply measure the height and width of your doorway and choose your preferred type of porch.

  Apex and flat roof porch frames  
  Porch components  

Choice of sizes

The apex canopy comes in two sizes, with maximum widths of approximately 1200mm or 1600mm. The flat roof design can be cut down if necessary to fit door widths between about 1200mm and 1600mm. 

In both cases, you can adjust the position of the brackets to allow for any unique features around your door.

The balustrades are available in turned or stop chamfered styles. Full length balustrades measure 2400mm high, and dwarf wall versions 1800mm. Both types are 577mm wide.


Strong construction

Built to last from solid pine, the porches have been designed and tested in line with UK building regulations to resist weight loadings of 50kg/m². This is more than enough to support your roof covering and any snow that may fall on it.

Step-by-step instructions are included with each porch kit, and are also available online. A list of required tools is also provided - you will need a drill, hammer, mallet, spirit level, screwdriver and tape measure.

The timber components come ready-machined and drilled, simplifying the installation process, and all fixings to assemble the porch are included. You only need to add exterior glue and wall bolts. (The exterior wall fixings are not supplied because not every wall construction is the same.)

  Green porch  
  We recommend applying exterior grade wood preservative to each component before assembling the porch. You can then stain or paint the canopy in the colour of your choice once it is in place, to conceal any marks made during construction.  

How to paint your porch

  Painting materials  

Before you start...

Wait for a period of dry, moderate weather if at all possible. Humid conditions can cause the wood to swell as well as prolonging the drying time, so it's best not to start the day after heavy rain.

At the other end of the scale, try and avoid working in hot sunshine as this is likely to make the paint blister.

Pick good quality brushes, as their bristles are less likely to come loose and stick to the woodwork. A small ½-inch (13mm) brush will let you get into the corners, while a medium-sized one of around 2 inches (50mm) will be ideal for making long sweeps over larger components. 

Lay plenty of plastic sheeting underneath first to protect the ground (or your front steps). 


Get painting

Apply a layer of exterior primer and allow to dry. Sand lightly with fine grit sandpaper to ensure a smooth surface, then wipe any dust away with a clean cloth.

For the top coat, choose a good quality weatherproof paint containing latex. This rubbery additive will allow the paint to flex with the movement of the wood, making it less likely to crack or peel during extremes of temperature and moisture. 

Start work at the very top of the porch, painting in the direction of the woodgrain. Keep a lookout for any drips landing lower down on the frame, and brush them out straight away before they get the chance to set hard. 

Apply two coats, letting the paint dry and sanding down the surface in between each layer for the smoothest finish.

  Painting wood  

How to stain your porch

  Woodstain pots


Be prepared

Just as with painting, for the best results you should try to avoid applying stain in humid conditions or in direct sunlight. 

Ensure the timber is completely dry before starting work. You can check this by sprinkling a few drops of water on to the surface. If the wood is unable to absorb the water, let it dry out for a few days and test again before application. 

Stir the woodstain thoroughly both beforehand and during the job to keep the colour consistent. It's always a good idea to test the stain on a piece of scrap wood first, to make sure you like the colour when it's dry.

If you're torn between two tones of woodstain, always pick the lighter one - you can change it to a darker colour afterwards if you want, whereas it will prove impossible to lighten up a dark shade once it has been applied.

Remember to protect the area underneath with a plastic sheet, as woodstain splashes are extremely difficult to remove.


Coat carefully

A good finish needs extremely careful application. Using a small brush or roller, apply the woodstain sparingly in the direction of the grain using smooth, even strokes. Wipe away any excess immediately.

To avoid lap marks, blend in each section of stain with an adjoining section before it has a chance to dry - and never stop halfway along a piece of timber. 

Allow around 24 hours for the woodstain to dry, depending on the manufacturer's instructions. After this you may want to apply a second coat for extra weather protection, or to achieve a darker colour.

If you have some woodstain left over, save it for any touching-up that might be needed in the future. Hammering down the lid securely with a rubber mallet will help keep the contents airtight and fresh. 

  Applying woodstain to porch  
  Keep your porch in good condition by restaining or repainting all timber components regularly to protect them from the weather. Repair or replace any damaged tiles or slates straight away to avoid leaks, which could damage the frame underneath.  
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Images © Richard Burbidge Ltd 2014 used with permission