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murphyca

11:06AM | 03/16/03
Member Since: 03/15/03
2 lifetime posts
Bvmisc
We have a two family/two story house and had new porches built recently. When it rains, water is running toward the house on the top floor porch and then seeps down the exterior wall onto the bottom porch. The top porch was built with interlocking slats of wood, a subfloor was installed to prevent water from entering the bottom porch. The top porch seems to be slightly unlevel, but I'm not sure if it is supposed to be level or leaning slightly away from the house. Do you think this is the problem? Can you suggest a remedy other than rebuilding the porch, and if not can you direct me to some information on how it is built properly?

treebeard

11:50AM | 03/16/03
Member Since: 01/14/03
264 lifetime posts
All porch floors should be constructed so as to slope slightly away from the the house, never back towards the house. This will continue to be a problem for you until the floor is corrected to slope away.

Piffin

03:27PM | 03/17/03
Member Since: 11/06/02
1281 lifetime posts
The minimum pitch should be 1/4" per foot away from the house. I don't understand your statement about the subfloor or flooring material. Do you not have a roof over these porches? A floor will not perform as a roof under any circumstances.

If this material is fir 1x4 T&G decking ( a common deck flooring) it should not be installed over a plywood subfloor. That is an interior installation detail. It will trap water and rot out in short order. The T&g should be sealed on all surfaces before installation and nailed to the joists with no subfloor. This way, when it is wetted, it woill dry from top and bottom evenly instead of drying on top and staying wet on bottom.

This was not a professional installation if it is as it seems.

murphyca

01:57AM | 03/18/03
Member Since: 03/15/03
2 lifetime posts
Thanks for both of your replies -- I now understand how bad this contractor was. A roof is over the porches. We had the porches replaced becuase they were the original ones built with the house in 1925. Covered in lead paint and falling down as you might imagine. The house is outside of Boston too, so the have taken a beating with the weather here. So we decided to expand the porches from the orginal size to about 2 feet more lenghtwise. This part is not covered by the roof. The contractor said that he would install this interlocking wood (I think it is the T&G material you are talking about), so if the top floor people watered their plants, water would not drip down to our porch. I don't think it was his intention to use the floor as a roof. When he put in the floor there was some black tarp/paper (I have no idea what this stuff is) over the plywood. However, the situtation now is what you are talking about, all the interlocking wood is warped and when is rains, there is water dripping from the middle of the porch through the plywood. My assumption and it sounds correct is all the water trapped(does this get any worse??) Yes... because now we have the case of the missing contractor. Off to court we go!

Anyway, my question is how to fix these porches. What would need to happen? I'm thinking:

1. Rip up the wood on the top porch
2. Take out the subfloor
3. Increase the pitch (how can this be done? Can you insert a 1/4" piece of wood on the ledger? Or is that a bad idea?)
4. Replace with regular deck wood like the stuff on the bottom porch.

I don't think anything needs to be done on the bottom floor, but maybe I'm wrong, because I'm assuming the pitch should be a 1/4" away from the house too. So, if you have any opinions on this it would be appreciated. Thanks for listening!

Catherine :-)

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