What is the best exterior paint for my porch?

Are you looking to add a screen porch or covered patio? Most likely you will need exterior grade paint for a portion or all of the columns, header, and ceiling!

While there are many paints that are exterior grade on the market, we have had the best performance overall with Sherwin Williams various exterior grades from gloss to flat finish.

At Archadeck of Charlotte, we design and build over 300 porches a year and paint is the final wrap on our project. It is critical that we have a surface that is both beautiful and protects the investment of our clients.

To see hundreds of porch designs with beautiful paint finishes, visit the numerous photo galleries on our website. Give us a call for a free consultation at (704) 944 – 1350 or drop us an email at charlotte@archadeck.net to set up a free design consultation.


Do I need to screen in my porch in Charlotte, NC?

For years, everyone felt the need to screen in their porch in the Carolina’s. More and more over the past 3 years, we have seen a shift to what we would call “open porches” or covered patios or covered decks.

These are basically the same structures with a roof and columns but one has a screen with a screen door and the other does not.

Why the trend to open porches? First and foremost, people like an unobstructed view. The fact is, most screen porches require more vertical posts than open porches to connect the screen to. When an open porch is designed, you can get away with fewer columns and they tend to be more substantial or wider columns. Often times when there is no screen, we use various decorative trims on the columns that don’t work as well when you attach the screen.

By installing larger ceiling fans, many times you can achieve the goal of the screen. The blowing fans tend to bother flying insects and they tend to stay on the perimeter. The advent of mosquito repellent companies, such as Mosquito Squad in Charlotte also plays a factor in enabling a homeowner to keep their covered porches open! To see great screen porch and open porch designs, go to archadeckofcharlotte.com.


Looking for screen porch design ideas?

In Charlotte, NC, nearly everyone wants a screen porch. They can be quite simple with slanted or a shed roof and a basic shape with screen and a door. Or…

Our design ideas begin with looking at your home’s roof line and imagining what would be the appropriate architectural fit whether its a gable roof, a shed roof, a gazebo style roof, or even a flat roof.

Gazebo style screen porch in the Ballantyne area of North Carolina by Archadeck

Gazebo style screen porch in the Ballantyne area of North Carolina by Archadeck

Then we look at colors of your home and the trim color. There are two primary routes we take. Depending on what you are trying to achieve, we can go with a rustic porch look or try to make the porch look as though it was part of the home rather than an addition. This is done through color and roof line.

By changing the size of the columns supporting the roof can make your porch seem more substantial and even decorative. In addition, adding architectural trim such as crown molding under the ceiling or dental molding to the exterior along with trim out the columns can make the porch more formal.

Custom porch by Archadeck of Charlotte in Myers Park area with round fiberglass columns and vinyl rail

Custom porch by Archadeck of Charlotte in Myers Park area with round fiberglass columns and vinyl rail

By combining different materials such as stone and wood you can really jazz up your screen porch! To get many porch design ideas, go to charlotte.archadeck.com/pickYourProject/Porches

Porches on patios…what do I need to consider? How do these effect the price of a Charlotte porch?

Archadeck of Charlotte built this pergola and paver patio

Another popular option is a pergola over a patio

Porches, whether they are screened in or simply covered, can be built on decks or patios. When you are planning to have a porch built on a patio, there are various things that should be taken into consideration prior to having it built.

First, what roof line will work when you look at the possible obstructions from existing windows, vents, pipes, lights, speakers, etc? What roof shape is appropriate to match the existing architecture? You may have a gable, a hip, a shed, or even a gazebo shaped roof that works best with your home.

Secondly, what is the existing flooring? Is it concrete, pavers, or brick? What will you need to do to dig your footings to support the new porch cover (roof)? Is the current patio the appropriate size or will you need to expand the footprint to fit the new porch? Will the additional materials be able to match the existing materials?

Thirdly, what about drainage? Will the new porch cover have gutters? Where will the downspouts be installed? What is the grade of your property and will the placement of the downspouts work will or does there need to be trenching done to route the downspouts where you want the water to run?

All of the above items will impact the cost of your project. Different roof lines have different costs associated with them. For example, a gable roof is more costly than a shed roof generally speaking and a gazebo roof is even more costly. If you want to expand the current patio to fit a large roof, this will incur cost above and beyond the porch cover itself. You are probably going to want a ceiling fan and lighting installed so you should budget for these additional electrical expenses.

For more information on porch considerations, visit either http://www.charlotte.archadeck.com or you can go to www.porch.com as well!

Large open porch over a brick patio with brick columns in Waxhaw, NC built by Archadeck of Charlotte

Large open porch over a brick patio with brick columns in Waxhaw, NC built by Archadeck of Charlotte

Sunroom options in Charlotte, NC and price points

custom built sunroom in Charlotte

Energy-efficient custom built sunroom with lattice under deck

More and more people are wanting to add on to their homes with specific rooms that allow a lot of light in and make us feel like we are on vacation without having to leave our home. When people refer to a sun room, there are many options and connotations that we will clarify in this blog.

The definition of a sunroom is: “a structure usually constructed onto the side of a house which allows enjoyment of the surrounding landscape while being sheltered from adverse weather conditions such as rain and wind.”

Having said this, some people refer to a screen porch as a sunroom also and if you look at the definition, it is close. One of the key differences is how important it is that this space be heated and cooled. While living in the Charlotte area allows us to live on a screen porch about 80% of the year, many want the ability to be using this sunroom year around.

There is a hybrid between a screen porch and sunroom that we have found to be quite popular and used in neighborhoods from Ballantyne Country Club to Beverly Crest and Providence Plantation. This is a custom-built structure that has Eze Breeze windows installed in it. This would act as a convertible screen porch/sunroom.
These are plastic porch windows that slide open and closed depending on if you want to avoid pollen, rain, wind, and cold temperatures. On beautiful days, you slide the windows open and you are back to a screen porch.

Charlotte sunroom with Eze Breeze windows

Archadeck of Charlotte designed and built this Eze Breeze sun porch

A fully heated and cooled or what we refer to as conditioned space is becoming more popular the past couple of years as a place where you can feel outdoor without actually being outdoors. These rooms are extensions of the house itself and often use hardwood floors or tile that match the existing flooring. We spend a lot of time with our customers helping define what their needs and wants are so we can best advise on what will work for them.

When it comes to price points, an average screen porch is going to be between $15 – 25,000. An Eze Breeze porch will add on average about $5,000 to the screen porch price. Finally, a sunroom on average will run from $40,000 – 80,000 depending on size and materials!

To see porch and sunroom photos, go to http://www.charlotte.archadeck.com

This brick sunroom was designed and built by Archdeck of Charlotte

This brick sunroom was designed and built by Archdeck of Charlotte

Screen porch flooring options

What are realistic options for screen porch flooring? There are several. Archadeck of Charlotte designs and builds hundreds of screen porches every year for 25-years now. Here are your options:

1. Plywood with an outdoor rug would be the least expensive

2. Wood decking with screen underneath would be next

3. Composite decking

4. Tile

5. Stone


See photos below or go to http://www.charlotte.archadeck.com


Screen Porch with wood burning stone fireplace

Archadeck of Charlotte design and built this screen porch and stone outdoor fireplace

Travertine tile screen porch with stone outdoor fireplace

Screen Porch with integrated outdoor fireplace and outdoor TV and tile on screen porch by Archadeck of Charlotte


How to make my screen porch look like it’s a truly integrated part of my house

Most people really want their screen porch to appear as though it were built with the house and not an addition or strange appendage! The question is, how to achieve this?

Archadeck of Charlotte has a few tips to make sure your porch looks integrated with your homes architecture:

1. Match roof shingles

Screen porch by Archadeck of Charlotte

Archadeck custom built this screen porch in Huntersville, NC

2. Match gutters

3. Match soffit and fascia

4. Match the roof line or pitch

5. Match the paint color from your home’s window and duo or trim

6. Keep the style consistent with your home’s exterior

to get great porch photo ideas, go to www.charlotte.archadeck.com