Historically, screened porches used mostly wood in the form of painted or stained pine or cedar. The porch areas made of wood included columns, railing, screen trim, roof trim, and fascia all involved some maintenance and upkeep. The amount and frequency of upkeep depended on the materials used for each of those areas. Five to ten years out, the look and condition of the porch was variable and frequently deteriorated based on the upkeep and condition of the wood originally used. It was not unusual to see cracking, splitting, wood rot, and splintering in this type of construction.
Today we have many more material choices available in every area of porch construction that’s exposed to the weather which are the most maintenance intensive areas. So, the selection of these materials impacts the frequency and cost of maintenance. For these exposed areas, there are low-maintenance alternative for railings, trimwork columns, roof trim, screen trim and the screens themselves. These low maintenance materials are crack and rot resistant and can often be cleaned simply with a moist sponge or soap and water. There is no such thing as zero maintenance. Spills and soils still need to be cleaned.
As you expect, low maintenance and more durable materials generally vary the cost of building the project. But these materials also last longer, require less maintenance, and look better for longer. The question is which elements of your screen porch should you consider using low maintenance materials for? The recommendation we make is dependent on your priorities in durability and upkeep in future years.
If you are thinking about adding a porch or deck to your Kansas City area home, give us a call at (913) 851 – 3325 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.