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Building a front porch with cinder blocks is not as difficult as you may think. With the right materials, tools, and plans it is possible for anyone to build their own front porch out of cinder blocks.
Cinder blocks are a great material to use when building your own front porch. They have been used for decades and can be very affordable, especially if you do the work yourself!
This blog post will provide an in-depth tutorial on how to build one so that you can do it yourself!
What Is A Cinder Blocks?
Cinder blocks are a type of concrete masonry unit (CMU) that is made using cinders or ashes and cement.
They can be used in place of stones to build walls, walkways, driveways, etc. Cinder blocks are also known as breeze blocks due to their resemblance to the size of bricks it has.
They are extremely versatile in use. They can be used to build walls, pillars, stairways, etc. These blocks have a lot of advantages over stones or bricks which makes them very popular among builders.
Some of the benefits include:
Some people also like using cinderblocks for their landscaping projects including flowerbeds and raised-bed gardens. Cinder blocks are easy to stack and fasten together so they can be used for retaining walls, building furniture, decorative items, etc.
There are many different kinds of cinder blocks, including hollow and solid.
Hollow blocks have a honeycomb structure which makes them lighter than regular concrete while still providing the strength you need for building. Making it a great block for building a porch.
You can also use cement to fill in any gaps that are left when using it with hollow cinder blocks. These types of cinder blocks are typically used in building fireplace surrounds.
How to Build a Front Porch with Cinder Blocks?
Cinder blocks are great for building structures that have a sturdy foundation. Cinder blocks can be used to build anything from walls, floors, and foundations of buildings, as well as building a cinder block porch
The cinder block is made up of cement so it’s able to withstand heavy weight without getting damaged easily.
However, cinder blocks are not only used for building purposes but also can be considered a decoration.
You may have seen some houses that use cinder blocks to build the front porch of their homes or other structures around them, along with paint and designs on top of it.
1. Design And Layout
Layout the dimensions of your cinder block porch on graph paper to figure out how many blocks you’ll need. A perimeter wall nine blocks deep by 12 blocks wide is required for a 12-foot by 16-foot porch.
Depending on how high you want your porch to be, you can make it one block or more high (for a 2-foot porch, you will need it to be three blocks high).
Mark the area with stakes and builder’s twine, leaving an 8-inch margin all around for footings. Then purchase your blocks; some building supply stores will deliver them.
Excavate the site. Remove all dirt at least 8 inches deep inside the porch area and dig a perimeter trench at least 8 inches deeper than the inside and 12 inches wide.
Pour concrete into the trench to serve as footings. You probably won’t need to build forms for this type of wall, though it’s an option.
The depth and width of your footings should be 8 inches and 12 inches, respectively. Allow the concrete to cure for at least a day before proceeding.
Stakes and twine should be placed around the perimeter to serve as squaring and leveling guides. Check that the corners are square and that the string heights are correct.
3. Build Perimeter Wall
Build your perimeter wall by laying blocks in mortar on top of the concrete. Begin on the house side and work your way outward, following your guidelines.
Spread mortar on the concrete with a trowel and place blocks in it; “butter” the ends of the blocks as you lay them to seal joints.
Make sure the blocks are level by using a level. Stagger the joints so that the blocks overlap each other if you’re laying more than one course high.
Use a level to ensure that the blocks are straight and plumb when laying more than one course.
4. Create The Floor
Fill the inner perimeter with gravel and sand. Compact 4 to 6 inches of gravel with a hand or mechanical tamper (it’s best to lay in courses of 2 to 3 inches and tamp, then the rest of the gravel).
Check that it is well compacted and fairly level. Then, to bring the interior up to the level of your perimeter wall, add 1 to 3 inches of sand.
With a tamper, compact the sand and level it with the top of your perimeter wall by running a 2-by-4 board across it.
5. Deck your Porch
You have two choices: lay half-blocks (4 inches high) on top of your sand and perimeter wall, mortar the outside blocks to the perimeter blocks, or build a wooden form and pour concrete to fill the interior.
If you choose concrete, create a barrier around the outside edge of the perimeter wall with 2-by-4 boards held together with stakes, then fill the space with concrete (it will flow into the gaps in the tops of the blocks but that will just solidify your perimeter wall).
Using concrete finishing tools, you can complete your project. If you choose a block deck, place the blocks across the top of the wall and sand to cover the area, then sweep dry mortar to fill the crevices.
Cost To Build A Cinder Block Porch
A porch should be at least 6 feet deep for comfortable seating. A table for outdoor dining requires at least 10 feet of depth.
Cinder blocks can be readily obtained for a low price, and they are affordable to construct.
A porch should have a minimum thickness of 3 feet concrete for the base and foundation.
The cost of a pallet of cinder blocks ranges from $115 to $225. A pallet of cinder blocks weighs 2,500 to 3,250 pounds on average and consist of 108 cinder blocks.
The average cost per cinder block is between $1 to $3 per block depending on where you buy the blocks.
The calculations below uses an average price of $2 per cinder block.
Cinder Blocks Needed To Build A Porch
|Porch Size||Cinder Blocks Needed||Cost|
|8 x 16 Feet||81||$162|
|8 x 20 Feet||95||$190|
|10 x 14 Feet||82||$164|
|12 x 16 Feet||95||$190|
|16 x 20 Feet||122||$244|
Cinder Block Calculator
This calculator helps you estimate the number of cinder blocks needed for a project. It can be used to calculate square or rectangular areas, as well as circular holes.
If you intend to construct a cinder block porch, use this cinder block calculator before you lay the first stone!
Is your mind racing with the thought, “How many cinder blocks do I need for this project?”
If so, this tool will undoubtedly be of great assistance to you. You can use it to determine how many cinder blocks are required for a specific porch size, estimate the amount of mortar required, and get an idea of how much the materials required for your project will cost based on the average cost of concrete blocks.
Does Building A Porch Increase Property Value?
Property value is often thought to increase by adding a porch. There are two main reasons for this belief: porches look nice, and they provide extra space for residents of the home.
According to some sources, the average return on investment for a porch addition is about 84 percent.
However, there are many variables at play with this figure: like room size and location of the home.
While porches will likely increase a property’s overall value, it isn’t guaranteed; these factors need to be considered as well before you make any decisions.
Do I Need A Permit To Build A Porch?
A permit is required for any deck that is higher than 30 inches off the ground. This rule applies to the majority of decks.
Anything less than 30″ in height is commonly referred to as a patio or “porch deck,” and no permit is required.