Structural Vinyl Porch Columns
A Curb Appealing Maintenance Free ApproachVinyl porch columns, stylish and maintenance free, can add lots of appeal to your porch and home. Combine them with vinyl porch railings and exterior house trim to create an enviable home.
Structural porch columns and porch posts in vinyl, polyurethane, and even fiberglass offer distinct beauty, durability, and minimal maintenance.
Mary and I really like the sophisticated look of today's vinyl porch products.
Reinforced to support your porch roof, vinyl columns do not decay or yellow and can withstand the test of time. No more staining or painting.
photo by ColumnStore.com**Columnstore.com no longer found
Typical structural vinyl porch columns are available in round (either straight or tapered) and square. Fluted vinyl columns are also available from most manufacturers.
Colors range between white, almond, clay, and tan and most can be painted. They all are popular for both their aesthetic appeal and heavy load bearing capabilities.
Load bearing is critical when determining the correct size of vinyl columns. Load bearing is based on the size and strength of the column.
As an example only, an 8-inch round vinyl column may be rated at 19,500 pounds, whereas a 10-inch column may be rated at 18,417 pounds. Load bearing capacity varies by manufacturer.
Most structural vinyl porch columns have an extruded aluminum or other similar interior support and are made in various lengths for most styles.
NOTE: You may need to consult with an engineer or architect to determine your load bearing requirement.
Vinyl Porch Columns and Vinyl Porch PostsIt is important to differentiate between a porch column and porch post (although they are commonly used to mean the same thing). A porch column is heavier in size while a porch post is reminiscent of what you normally see on a Victorian porch as shown below.
Typically smaller in diameter than porch columns, vinyl porch posts are extremely strong, durable, and have the same load bearing capabilities. Usually, an aluminum (or similar material) is surrounded by stainless steel to give it strength.
Fypon Polyurethane ColumnsFypon porch columns not only look fantastic but also provide amazing strength. They are built from durable high-density urethane and have load ratings of 12,000 pounds.
Fypon Columns by ColumnStore.com**Columnstore.com no longer found
For a fully finished look, decorative caps and bases are available for both square and round Fypon polyurethane columns. Like vinyl columns, Fypon columns are low maintenance and are resistant to both insects and moisture.
An added plus is that they can be used both indoors and out and especially in high humidity locations.
Round Fiberglass Porch Columns
If you are looking to buy fiberglass porch columns we found these columns (photo at right) from Vintage Woodworks to be of a very high quality.
They are made from a composite that is fiber-reinforced to create a column with a superior strength-to-weight ratio.
These fiberglass porch columns are weather and insect proof. Highly durable, they require minimal maintenance and along with their high load ratings, are ideal for almost any front porch.
We like the Tuscan-style cap and base as shown in the photo at right. These are non-structural sleeves that fit over the column to give it added appeal.
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How to Install Vinyl Porch Posts
Shop: Porch Posts
Read More: Porch Post Installation Manual (PDF)
- 1 - Porch Post
- 2 - Plates (top & bottom are the same)
- 8 - #10 x 1-1/2" Wood screws
- 4 - #10 x 1-1/2" Tapcon™ screws
Measure opening where post is to be installed. Deduct 3/8" from your measurement for the plates, to determine your post length.
For 42" Railing don't cut any off the bottom, just the top of the post.
For 36" Railing don't cut off more than 6" at bottom, then balance off the top.
For 30" Railing don't cut off more than 12" at bottom then balance off the top.
When cutting bottom of post make sure your cut is the same pitch as slope of the base! Use chop (mitre) saw with a carbide tipped multi-purpose blade.
Step #2 - Structural Post - Wood Floor or Concrete Installation:
1. Raise roof enough to remove old supports (1/16"-1/8").
2. Position top and bottom plate onto post.
3. Slide post into position.
4. Rotate post to reveal holes in post plates.
5. Install bottom plate using (4) #10 x 1-1/2" wood screws (included) for wood floor or (4) #10 x 1- 1/2" Tapcon™ screws (included) for concrete floor.
6. Install the top plate using (4) #10 x 1-1/2" wood screws (included).
7. After installation of plates, rotate post back into proper position. There is no need to screw post to plates unless uplift support is needed (See Optional Step 3).
At this time the old posts or supports that were supporting your roof can be removed placing all the weight on your new structural vinyl porch posts
Optional Step #3 - Uplift Storm Support Instructions:
This procedure is not necessary for normal application of porch posts, only needed in situations such as when hurricane strength winds are anticipated which could raise your roof off of the posts.
1. Drill a 1/8" hole through the post and the tabs on the plate in the middle opposing each other 5/8" from the deck and ceiling.
2. Screw post to plate using #10 x 1-1/2" pan head white screws (not included).
3. Optional modular trim sets can be used to cover screws.
Available for 4" & 5"
Posts for a Finished Look
Decorative Trim Adds to
Appearance of Posts
Structural Porch Posts by RDI
VINYL PORCH POSTS (BASE MOUNTING KIT SOLD SEPARATELY)
The RDI Porch and Newel Post designs capture the elegant style of a turned, painted wood or a square clean look without the maintenance. Behind the classic design of the porch post is a load-bearing aluminum column along with 3 sliding blocks to keep the post sleeve centered and gives you something to screw railing into thats structurally sound.
Options are available with capacities of either 2,500 lbs., or 5,000 lbs., Hurricane Lock post bases prevent wind uplift, and eliminate roof jacking during installation Porch Posts come in heights of 108" and both 4" x 4" or 5" x 5". Great for new construction or replacing old structural porch posts. RDI’s square, vinyl Porch Posts create a sleek, traditional style without the maintenance. The Turned Post adds old school charm to any project. Both posts include an Interior load-bearing aluminum column.
Vinyl Porch Columns & Railings
Looking for strong supporting posts for your porch or deck? Whether you need to replace existing posts or are building a whole new porch, we can help!
Elite Vinyl Railings offers durable, commercial quality vinyl porch posts and short posts in a variety of styles to match your desired look including:
- Raised Panel
- 4 1/2" Classic
- Our designed structural porch posts are available in 4" or 5" widths and 108" long.
- The Classic porch post is only available in a 4-1/2" width and 108" long.
- Square posts are available in 4", 5", 6", and 8" widths in various lengths.
- Tapered round columns are available in 8" or 10" diameter and 9' or 10' long. The 8" round column is also available un-tapered.
- For short posts we recommend the straight 4x4 newel. (It fits over wood 4x4s.) Matching posts are also available.
- To mount newel posts on concrete we have a stainless steel post base.
- We have matching lamp posts for our designed and square porch posts. Lamp posts are available as either a 4" (recommended) or 5" width.
Have questions? Contact Elite Vinyl Railings for more information about our posts or to schedule installation.
Decorative Caps Complete the Look
Accent your post with one of 7 different post caps and a base trim cap. Choose from New England, Gothic, Ball, Queen, King and New York style post cap designs.
Need installation? Contact Elite Vinyl Railing for complete post and railing product installation.
Posts plastic porch
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