Column and Porch Post Installation Instructions

Structural Columns and Porch Post Installation

Structural columns and porch posts can be used for load bearing and non-load bearing conditions and are installed by the ame method. They can be installed by several different techniques depending on the circumstances. The following represent an acceptable method:

  1. Measure the total length necessary to fill the opening where the column is to be located.
  2. Cut the column shafts 1/4” shorter than the overall opening. This will accommodate the clearance necessary for the mounting hardware. Since the column has either an aluminum or steel internal shaft, it will be necessary to use a metal cutting saw.
  3. Slip the cap and base on the appropriate ends of the column and slide up/down the shaft.
  4. Locate the hardware into the ends of the columns.
  5. Slip the complete assembly into the opening. Make sure someone can assist to hold the column while fastening the hardware.
  6. Rotate the column 45 degrees from square and position the hardware.
  7. Secure the hardware to the deck and beam (making sure the column is plumb and level) by screwing directly through each corner of the hardware and into the deck and beam beyond using the appropriate fastener. Deck screw or masonry anchor. (Provided) Rotate column back into final position.
  8. Secure the column from uplift by cross screwing (pre-drill first) through both ends of the column shaft and into the hardware using the 4” self-tapping metal screws provided. (Select a location which will be covered by the cap/base)
  9. Apply PL Premium adhesive to the underside of the cap/base and slide into final position at the ends of the column shaft.
  10. Secure the cap/base in place by using brad nails or screws into the side of the column shaft.
  11. Finish the installation by filling the screw holes, caulking around the cap/base interface with the column shaft and if necessary, where the cap and base meet the floor/ceiling. You are now ready to paint the columns.

Decorative Column Installation

We offer decorative columns, which can be either be ordered with a one-piece shaft that can be used alone as a non-load bearing member, or with the shaft split vertically to wrap around existing load bearing members. In addition, some column designs have the cap and base telescoping around the column shaft, while other designs have the cap and base attaching directly to the ends of the column shaft. (Non-telescoping) They can be installed using several different techniques depending on the circumstances. The following represent acceptable methods:

  1. One Piece Shaft/telescoping cap and base:
    1. Measure the total length necessary to fill the opening where the column is to be located.
    2. Cut the column shaft approximately 1″ shorter that the overall opening.
    3. Slip the cap and base on the appropriate ends of the column shaft and locate the assembly into the opening. Make sure someone can assist to hold the column while fastening the cap and base.
    4. Apply PL Premium adhesive to the underside of the base and secure to the floor by screwing directly through each corner of the base into the substrate beyond with the appropriate fastener. i.e. Plated deck or masonry screw.
    5. Apply adhesive to the underside of the cap and secure to the ceiling or beam by screwing directly through each corner of the cap into the substrate beyond with the appropriate fastener. i.e. Plated deck or masonry screw.
    6. Secure the column shaft from rotating in the cap and base by cross screwing through the base and into the column shaft. (Select a location which will be easily repaired).
    7. Finish the installation by filling the screw holes, caulking (see “Finishing” section on page 233) around the cap/base interface with the column shaft and if necessary, where the cap and base meet the floor/ceiling. You are now ready to paint the columns.
  2. One Piece Shaft/Non-telescoping cap and base:
    (Column shaft rests on cap/base)

    1. Measure the total length necessary to fill the opening where the column is to be located. (Include caps and bases.)
    2. Cut the column shaft so that when the cap and base are installed onto each end of the shaft, the complete assembly measures the same as the opening.
    3. With the shaft cut, apply PL Premium adhesive to the ends of the column shaft and screw both the cap and base to each end of the shaft from the underside of each using plated deck screws.
    4. Slip the completed assembly into the opening. Secure the column in place (making sure it’s plumb and level) by screwing directly through each corner of the cap/base and into the floor, deck, beam or ceiling beyond with the appropriate fastener. i.e. Deck or masonry screw
    5. Finish the installation by filling the screw holes, caulking around the cap/base interface with the column shaft and if necessary, where the cap and base meet the floor/ceiling. You are now ready to paint the columns.
  3. Split Shaft Columns
    1. When installing a split column over an existing load bearing member, cut the cap and base in half, and cope them out, if necessary, to fit around the structural member.
    2. Reassemble the cap and base around the supporting member, using PL Premium between both halves of the cap/base and plated deck screws.
    3. Identify which type of cap/base configuration you are working with and cut the column shaft and fasten cap and base as per #1 or #2 above.
    4. Apply PL Premium adhesive to the aligning spleens and dadoes in each column halve. Reassemble the column shaft around the supporting member by aligning the two halves and clamping together. (Make sure adhesive is oozing from the seams when assembled.) Both plated deck screws and air nails can be used to hold the two halves together while the adhesive cures.
    5. Secure the cap, base, and column shaft as described in #1 or #2 above.
    6. Allowing 24-48 hrs for the adhesive to cure, the vertical seams in the column can be “seamed”.
    7. After the shaft is completely seamed, finish the installation by filling the screw holes, caulking around the cap/base interface with the column shaft and if necessary, where the cap and base meet the floor/ceiling. You are now ready to paint the columns