The Do It Yourself Patio Cover Kit
The two ways to have a patio cover installed at your home is through a Solara Patio Cover installer, or the do it yourself patio cover kit. The patio cover kit is very user friendly making installation easy. Any capable handyman can consider this a weekend project. The patio cover kit is made from a light weight aluminum material, requiring little to no heavy lifting.
Before you begin designing your patio cover kit you should have a detailed plan of what you want the patio cover to do for you. Do you want it to provide shade? Protect you from the elements? Or provide sun during the winter time? Whatever the reason may be a clear plan will help you get your patio cover kit designs started.
Patio Cover Kit Specifications
The next step is to measure the space for the patio cover kit. Without correct measurements your patio cover kit could be either too big or too small. You may even have a uniquely built patio or house needing extra detail and custom lengths for your patio cover kit. At Solara we offer standard or customizable sizes, making no patio cover design impossible.
After you get the desired measurements you need to take the projection, height and width of the patio cover kit into consideration. These three elements determine how much shade you will receive and how much view you will have after the project is done.
- ProjectionProjection refers to the length of the patio cover kit as its protruding from the structure. The end result will determine how much view is cut off but also how much shade is extended out. This is important because too much projection will cut off your view and make you feel closed in, but not enough will limit how much space you have to work under the patio cover. If you want to have a longer projection you can also increase the height of your patio cover kit. This will allow you to keep your view and increase the shade area.
- WidthWidth is another important factor in your patio cover kit design. This will affect how much shade you receive at the different angles of the sun. You want to design your patio cover kit to at least cover a certain area that is wide enough to cover your needs but not so wide as to cut off your back yard.
- HeightThe final specification you need to determine is the height of your patio cover kit. The higher your patio cover extends the less shade you have. You do not want to build a patio cover too low either, causing a feeling of being closed in and uncomfortable.
Another consideration for your patio cover kit is the design of the slope. With the click of a button your patio cover can become a solid roof, so you need a way to drain rain water. Solara Patio Cover experts recommend a 2% pitch at the minimum. Usually the higher point will be connected to the house and the lower point will be connected at the far end (post). We recommend that the lower point of the patio cover will be between 8 to 10 feet (the standard size is 8 ft 6 in).
- Tip: For any patio cover kit Solara recommends building the slope away from the house. This will give the patio cover a more balanced look. We can design the slope to the width specifications but this will cause a crooked look to your patio cover kit since it will not be parallel to window and door frames.
You can add a gutter to the design of your patio cover kit but in many cases it is not necessary. If the water drains off into a yard or garden, that area will be wet anyway. This could result in wasting more money in your budget. Some people have a second level to their patio, or a patio cover kit design that is between two walls. Usually keeping these areas dry is necessary, requiring the installation of a gutter to help direct the flow of water away.
One of the final design decisions for your patio cover kit is where you will put your posts. Post placement is important because depending on your snow and wind load will affect how many posts you will need. This will affect the overall design and layout underneath the patio cover kit. Some considerations to take into account when dealing with post placement are:
- The span of the rafters and headers that will be determined by the engineering, snow load, wind load provided by the city. This will determine what kind of post you will be using, and how many you will have to install on your patio cover kit.
- Installing a post in front of a window or other viewing area will block your view.
- A covering that hangs off the end of the patio cover will make the structure stronger. Posts will not be placed at the end of the structure so we can utilize this benefit.
- You have to take into consideration where you will connect the headers. They will most likely be connected to a solid wall against the house. We recommend attaching it to a stud for the strongest support.
Patio Cover Kit Summary
Keeping all of these items listed above in mind you are ready to start your do it yourself project. Designing the perfect patio cover kit can make a great addition to any home or garden project. Knowing the details of your design will allow you to visualize the final product before you have even started.