If you can't enjoy your patio in the summertime because of an all-out bug assault, consider building a patio screen enclosure. This is a fairly easy job that can be accomplished in one or two days depending on how much help you can round up. These instructions are for building a screen enclosure on a patio that already has a roof in place.
Before You Begin
Before you build your patio screen enclosure, check with your township's zoning commission to see if you need a permit for this job. If your patio already has a roof, you may not need a permit to add the enclosure, but it's important to check first.
Tools and Materials
- Ready to mix concrete
- Screen netting
- Construction staples
- Staple gun
- Carpenter's level
- 2x2 wood planking
- 4x4 wood posts
- Pre-built screen door
- Circular saw
- Table saw
- Support post brackets
- Measuring tape
Building a Patio Screen Enclosure
Installing the Support Posts
Support posts should be installed approximately ever four feet along the perimeter of the patio. Measure the width of the screen door and decide where you are going to place it in your design. Plan to install one support post on either side of the screen door, then measure out four feet from each side for the next support post.
Use the shovel to dig holes for your support posts and cut the posts with the table saw so they are long enough to reach from the bottom of the hole to the underside of the roof. Insert a post into a hole and pour in the pre-mixed cement. Install one post at a time and use the carpenter's level to ensure the post is plumb on two sides. Secure the post to the underside of the roof using support post brackets.
Installing the Middle Supports
Measure the distance between two support posts and cut a length of 4x4 post to that size. Mark the support posts equally at waist level and install support brackets on the inside of both posts. Slide the cut length of 4x4 post into the brackets, make sure it is level and screw the horizontal post to the two vertical posts. Do this between every support post with the exception of the area where the door is going to be installed.
Measure the height of the screen door and install a header between the two support posts.
Installing the Screen
Starting at one end of the patio, staple the screen to the support post. Unroll the screen and staple it thoroughly at each support post until you get to the spot where the door is being installed. Staple the screen along the horizontal support as well as the vertical posts.
Repeat the screening process on the other side of the door and when finished, cut a piece of screen to fit the opening above the door and staple it in place.
Installing the Screen Door
Set the pre-built screen door in place and screw the hinges into the support post so the door opens smoothly. Finish the installation by installing any hardware provided with the door or install a simple eye and hook locking device.
Finishing the Installation
Cover up the staples on the exterior of the screened enclosure. Install 2x2 planking or some other type of decorative molding over the support posts to cover up the staples and give the patio enclosure a nicely finished look that complements your home's exterior.
Helpful tip: If you want to paint or stain your patio enclosure a certain color, paint the structure before you install the screening.
Sit back and relax on your newly enclosed patio without the threat of mosquitoes and other flying critters this summer.