Return to the Building a Home Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

Posted by elizawhyza (My Page) on
Wed, May 9, 12 at 16:37

We're having a wooden front porch put on the front of our house. It was originally going to be a masonry porch, and from our drawings it looks like there was no step down. Now the platform is there for the wooden porch, and there is a step down from the front door. I just assumed that it would be flush like it would have been with the masonry one. I can't put my hands on the new drawing of the wooden porch to see the spec, but I was wondering if there is anything inherently different about a wood versus a masonry porch that would dictate a step down onto the porch from the house.

Thanks!


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

I've heard step down so water can't creep in.


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

Is it an immediate step down? That doesn't seem as safe to me, but maybe I am misunderstanding. I have several friends who built farmhouses with frontporches that have wood floors, and there is no step down to the porch from the door. There is a threshhold, then the porch floor. We have a masonry front porch, and there is a little, perhaps 4" "step" from the door down to the porch floor, but it doesn't look or function as a step.


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

I prefer no-step. Better for accessibility. Proper finish grading should take care of drainage concerns but not always possible with existing work.


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

Google up front porch images and you'll see most entries are elevated above the porch.

If you don't elevate, you had better be prepared for an occasional rush of leaves, snow or whatever when you open the door.


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

This discussion sounded awfully familiar... sure enough, when I did a search I found a thead on the same question from just a few months ago. LOL! To save everybody some time, here is a link.

Here is a link that might be useful: Dec 2011:


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

The relevant issues are climate and overhead protection of the door from the weather. Without that information the discussion is forced to consider all possibilities. If you want good answers to a problem you must first define the problem well.

Private residences are not required to be handicap accessible but it is a good idea to have an easy way to get a wheelchair through at least one exterior door. There are movable aluminum door ramps sold to deal with the typical step down at a porch or stoop. I have one stored in my front door vestibule.


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

+1 on Renovator8


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

discussion sounded awfully familiar

Most are!

And the point of my million pics was that many/most entries are elevated above the adjacent porches, if only the few inches. For example,
Snowy Steps at Brian's Place Pictures, Images and Photos
Brian's Place


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

Thanks for the visual!


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

I have concrete outside exterior doors, and nothing is elevated (there is no step.) It's all graded so water flows away from the house. The front door has a covered area that protects it from the elements. Once it snowed and the wind blew the snow towards the door, but that would have happened with a step or not.

It is standard here for new builds to be more accessible and not have steps. I live in a dry climate, which might make that easier to accomplish/get away with....


 o
RE: Should a front porch have a step down, or be flush?

Here's a pic of my front porch when my house was under construction. I chose not to have a step and it was fine because of my deep porch. I would have had to have a step all the way across that French door too. I will do it again this way.

My shallow porch, on the other side of the hose should have had a step. I made a mistake there. The rare big snow that we have looks a little like the picture above.

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Building a Home Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here