Porch Swing Selection and Installation Made Easy!

Who doesn’t like a good porch swing?

The weather outside is nice, and your porch is looking a little bare and uninviting. What to do? I know the feeling…we had a concrete “island effect” going on for years, as seen below. Are you looking to transform an area of your porch, but don’t know where to start, and don’t know what is involved?

So why not add a nice porch swing?

If you have an Old House, chances are your porch already had a swing installed at some point within the last 100 years! Additionally, everyone needs a place to lounge and relax in between the work week, and work around the house. Am I right?

So let’s do it! Here are the FOUR steps to get you started with a new porch swing and don’t forget to check out the video below!

 

1). Finding a Good Porch Swing

Types of Porch Swings

The selections here are almost endless! From materials to styles, there are many options to choose from whether you are on a budget, or want the Taj Mahal of porch swings! Oh yeah!!!

  • Wood Swings (many species to choose from)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

  • Painted Swings

Porch Swing

  • Wicker Swings

Porch Swing

  • Wrought Iron Swings

Porch Swing

  • Recycled Plastic

Porch Swing

  • Budget Swings

Porch Swing

  • and many more!

The Swing Company is one of many online resources where you can find a quality porch swing. Ours pictured, is the “Amish Heavy Duty Rollback”, 5 ft, with up to 700 lb capacity. They start at only $79.99.

Porch Swing

Styles of Porch Swings

So you just want a porch swing, right? Well, there are many styles to choose from, so, if you are picky, it might not be a simple, or quick purchase. Some of the most popular and stylish porch swings are:

  • Amish

Porch Swing

  • Classic

Porch Swing

  • Highback

Porch Swing

  • Rollback

Porch Swing

  • Rustic

Porch Swing

  • Swing Beds

Porch Swing

  • and many more!

Porch Swing Sizes

Porch swings are available in many different sizes (depending on manufacturer), so you should be able to accommodate any outdoor living space with the proper size porch swing. Common sizes are:

  • 2 Foot Swings
  • 3 Foot Swings
  • 4 Foot Swings
  • 5 Foot Swings
  • 6 Foot Swing
  • 7 Foot Swings

NOTE: In situations where overhead support is minimal, a wider swing (wider mounting points) will distribute the load out toward the edges (less stress), rather than the middle of the span (more stress).   

Porch Swing Options

Just like car options, porch swings have many, many different options, which allow you to customize your swing to your exact specifications. Some options include:

  • Color – paints, stains, etc.
  • Hanging chains OR ropes.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

  • Comfort Kit – hanging hardware, hooks, PLUS “comfort springs”.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

  • Cup Holders – side mount and fold-down / armrest-style.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

  • Cushions

Porch Swing

  • Optional stainless steel hardware – to prevent rust if exposed year-round.

2) Protect Your New Porch Swing

Exterior Finish

So now that you have a new porch swing, it is a good idea to protect your investment, especially if you buy it “unfinished”. At a minimum, apply at least 3 coats of exterior polyurethane or equivalent, before assembly.

Ours arrived with only a “honey” colored wiping stain applied. No sealer! So we did the following, to ensure it will last a long time, outside in the elements:

  • Added a wiping stain to achieve a color match to our existing house colors (storm windows/porch ceiling.
  • 3 coats of Sikkens CETOL Door and Window Clear Satin wood finish. 
  • Then assembled the porch swing per the manufacturer’s instructions (back, sides, chains, etc).

Porch Swing

Storage

  • Store your porch swing away in a garage, basement, or utility building, to protect it in winter months.
  • Proper care and storage in the “off season” will make your swing last for a long time!

3) Installing a Porch Swing

Mounting Location

Before mounting your swing, you want to make sure that the location is sufficient and safe to handle the added weight load. Caution: Always install any porch swing per the manufacturer’s specifications and installation instructions.  Prep the ceiling:

    • Locate the ceiling joists – assess direction in which they run (see video below). Assess ceiling joist condition and size (2×4, 2×6, etc).
    • Assess swing mounting hardware locations (new and/or old) – space out per manufacturer’s instructions.
      • TIP: Overhead swing mounts are usually placed 2-4 inches wider that the overall swing width. This adds stability and decreases chain interference along the sides, as it swings forward and backward.  
    • Reinforce mounting locations as needed (see video below). Or, if ceiling is replaced or planned for repairs, that is a good time to reinforce the ceiling joist(s) for the added swing weight.
    • Locate the CENTER of the ceiling joist or support (this is very important).

Porch Swing

    • Drill a pilot hole to prevent wood splitting, and mount the hanging brackets with proper sized screws/bolts, per manufacturer’s specifications.

Porch Swing

    • Attach and adjust porch swing chains/ropes to your preferred height.

Porch Swing

 

  • Don’t forget to attach “safety chains” (usually sold separately) when using springs or a “comfort kit” – (see video).

NOTE: In situations where overhead support is minimal, a wider swing (wider mounting points) will distribute the load out toward the edges (less stress), rather than the middle of the span (more stress).   

4) Enjoy Your New Swing

Well, that concludes this short guide on how to select and install a new porch swing. Sit back, relax, pour your favorite drink, and enjoy your new swing!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Have a favorite porch swing or in the process of installing one? Share your experience with us over on the My Old House“Fix” Facebook Group!

 

New Logo-1       Copyright© 2018. My Old House Fix

 

Advertisements

One thought on “Porch Swing Selection and Installation Made Easy!”

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.