I have a 12' X 16' screened in back porch and am wanting to close it in completely to make it into another room. Any help, suggestions, oppinions are welcome. I really need help with closing in the windows.
While I am by no means a pro and I don't have a complete fisual of your environment, my suggestion would be to determine where you want ot have actual windows and get a rough-in measurement of some windows you would like to install. Then you can frame in the existing openings to fit your new windows, covering the rest of the outside with chipboard or plywood (personal recommendation) and siding. Make sure to wrap the exterior with Tyvek or some other breathable membrane before adding siding. Then you can stuff the inside with insulation (get the highest R rating for the size studs you are using), drywall and paint.
If you are just looking to enclose the existing porch and turn it into a sun room, then the easiest thing would be to add a quarter round strip to the exterior window frames and install a window pane (glass or acryllic) against that and use either another quarter round or square trim strip on the inside to hold it in.
My back porch is a concrete slab with a roof held up by 3 decorative iron supports and a cross beam. In the winter, I have temporary frames made of 2x2's, each frame is 3'x8' and covered in 6 mil plastic. These frames hang from hooks and are tied together to keep them from swinging. This keeps the rain out and most of the wind, making it usable for year round BBQ and also as a designated smoking area.
I really think that gruemaster “nailed it” on his post. He gave you a few great options depending on how permanent you want it to be. I love the 3’ x 8’ panel idea. I just might use that one for my patio.
It sounded like you wanted to make it into a livable room. So I just thought I would give you a picture of the typical framing of a wall. If you’re not familiar with basic framing it could be dangerous of it’s not done correctly. So here are the framing basics. (See the picture below). I have also put a link for a how to install a window once it’s framed (click here). Once you are at the how to site just to the right there are links for a couple of videos that might help give you a better visual. Hope this helps you out with your project.
Let us know if you have any other questions. Post some pictures once you’re done so we can give you your atta boy that I’m sure will be greatly deserved.