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A wooden balcony can beautify or revitalize the house, in any case, it extends the living space. Although only a few square meters, but can be very significant recreational islands, when the offspring plays the garden with a constant noise level. Then the parents can enjoy the coffee on the balcony in peace and still have the children in view.
Planning a wooden balcony
For the planning of your wooden balcony, you first need an architect, master craftsman or carpenter, who is entitled to submit a building permit. He will work out the planning with you when he comes from your town, he knows the regulations to be taken into account in your state building code and a possibly to be observed local design statute. You should still inquire whether building regulations or restrictions exist according to the development plan.
There are basically two design options: In a cantilevered plate, the supporting beams pierce the outer wall of the house. This balcony construction involves the risk of energy losses caused by thermal bridges, and damage to the openings can quickly lead to building damage. So this is more of a construction, which is found in old buildings, where it is often replaced in the course of a facelift modernization by a more energy-efficient construction. Today, a balcony is usually cheaper in terms of building physics and also designed to be less expensive in front of the façade. The building shell remains untouched in this way, also the balcony is the same sound technology decoupled from the adjacent room. This is a simple construction: the balcony stands on vertical columns supporting horizontal beams on which the formwork that forms the floor rests.
How big your balcony should be, depends on the planned use. If you have a garden, the new balcony may only serve as an exit. Then a small area is enough to catch a breath of fresh air, air the beds or sunbathe for a while. If the children live downstairs, the balcony may be a bit bigger if the older generation wants to have breakfast in peace. However, everything that protrudes more than 90 centimeters, the windows underneath shadows. In extreme cases, this can even cost additional heating energy in the lower room. In the choice of shape and size must of course also be considered that the balcony completely redesign the facade. It should therefore be carefully tuned in the dimensions, the material and the construction to the style of the house. Of course, you should also include the state of the sun in your planning. For example, it depends on whether the balcony later needs an additional awning, because the sun on the south side in summer brings unbearable heat with it.
Next, the railing is planned. It can be mounted on the floor or attached to its side or just to the pillars. In any case, railings should not be attached to the wall of the house, which can lead to cracks. What the railing looks like determines the future effect of the house. You can choose between open or closed shapes, the most diverse materials come into question: aluminum or glass, wood or steel or combinations of these materials. The shapes offered are very diverse, it is even conceivable that you design your own balcony balustrade. The height is prescribed and depends on the height of the floor.
The last considerations in the planning of the constructive wood protection, so we called a method of construction, which protects a non-waterproof material such as wood already by the construction from damage. A basic idea of constructive wood protection is that wood is best not to get wet at all. Wherever water hits as in outdoor structures, the design should ensure that the water runs off and moisture dries quickly. This means for your balcony construction that the vertical supports are placed on at least 30 centimeters high concrete base and shielded with a metal clothing so that splash water can not wood. Also, the balcony can be roofed, a sufficient projection of the roof keeps him almost always dry.
Open floor or floor sealing?
The floor of the balcony has to withstand water. If there is no running surface underneath, the floor can be left open so that water flows through it easily. If the area below is to be used, the balcony floor must be constructed like a flat roof: The area gets a slope of 2 to 3 percent and is sealed downwards. For this purpose, a seal made of bitumen or plastic or as a liquid seal is applied directly under the floor covering. The sealing material not only has to be weatherproof, it should also be able to withstand exposure to microbes. Your carpenter can show you the right materials and maybe reference projects where they are already being used.
If the floor surface is a closed level, it should be sealed so that it forms a watertight tub. This prevents seepage into adjacent components, for example, once the drain is clogged. Then the slope should lead away from the building, an overflow possibility with gutter must also be planned. If the construction is carried out in accordance with the regulations, all woods can be used that are classified as at least moderately durable against weather damage. Even normal timber could be used, but then a preventive wood protection with appropriate means is necessary.
If the balcony lasts long, otherwise lies with you: You should clean the floor regularly so that no wet deposits form. The wood should also be checked every season and provided with additional protection if necessary. Once the planning is complete, your balcony must be approved, and the building application is submitted to the building authority. The building application contains the building description, a site plan, views and a ground plan, for the docked platform, the statics including stiffening evidence.