How to tell if your patio cover is stable?

Patio covers not only increase the aesthetics of your home but provide the much needed protection from the California sun. If you are questioning the stability of your patio, the following are 5 things to evaluate. 

1.Do your posts, beams, or joists suffer from rot or termite damage? The stability of your patio cover relies mostly on these wood members. If multiple of these key structural pieces are damaged then we advise you to consider replacing full sheets in order to make sure that the hardware, bolts, and trims are replaced as well. Not to mention, the cost to replace them can be cheaper than spending the time to repair them depending on the extent of the damage.

2. Is the foundation near your posts damaged?

Living in California comes with its perks, however, earthquakes are not one of them. Unfortunately earthquakes may cause damage to the foundation of the concrete in your yard because the soil shifts and cracks the foundation for the support posts. When this happens, the integrity of the entire patio cover is compromised and a full replacement must be considered. Not to mention, a full replacement might be required in order to accommodate the new foundation to be poured. The foundation is the primary support as such it must be carefully checked for any inconsistencies or damage. 

3. Have you found that your hardware is rusting and failing? 

 Hardware is considered to be the glue for all the pieces that make up the patio cover as it must ensure that the pieces of wood stay connected when subjected to horizontal forces. Rusted or failing hardware is typical with old patios or patios in climates with considerably high humidity. This hardware should be replaced as soon as possible since the use of proper fasteners is critical for the structural integrity of your deck

4. Excessive Beam Arching

Excessive beam arching occurs for a variety of reasons. The most common is improper installation. When patio covers or pergolas are not properly built and the spam of the supporting posts is larger than necessary then beam arching or bending might occur. If the supported beam is arched too much then it will fail which may lead to a catastrophic and dangerous incident because normally beams support the roof of the structure.

5. Structure Failure Due to Not Built to Code The California building code is the governing building code for Sacramento and nearby regions such as Folsom, Orangevale, Granite Bay, Citrus Heights, and Fair Oaks. Signs that indicate a patio cover was not built to code are missing hardware, incorrect connections, invalid beam and joist spans/spacing, and lack of railings. Following proper codes from the start to finish of the project will make sure that your patio cover will last for many years to come and will be a safe place for all occupants. 

We encourage you to evaluate the structural integrity of your patio cover. If you find that you are in need of patio cover repair, feel free to reach out to the Elite team at (916) 469-4660. 

 

To learn more about building codes please visit building.saccounty.gov.  https://building.saccounty.gov/HomeOwner/Pages/PatiosPools.aspx