How to Build a Porch Swing Out of a Door

A porch swing doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Learn how to build one using basic 2x4s and an old door.

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April 03, 2018
Skill Level
Estimated Cost $500
Time
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Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Tools and Materials

  • pneumatic nail gun
  • nails
  • measuring tape
  • pencil
  • speed square
  • (6) 2x4 x 8'
  • (5) 1x4 x 8'
  • screws
  • drill
  • six-panel door (or an old door to upcycle for a vintage look)
  • spindles or furniture legs
  • paintbrush
  • paint roller
  • paint
  • miter saw
  • 40' rope
  • (8) eye hooks
  • (8) weldless steel chains
  • decking screws
  • Kreg jig (optional)
Find all the tools and materials for this project at Lowes.com.

Step 1: Build the Seat Frame

Build a frame for the base of the swing using 2x4s. The frame should be 6’8” x 17-½”. Standard seat depth is 16-18”.

Mina Starsiak of Good Bones partners with Lowes. Not to be used for alternative clients/purposes.

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Step 2: Add Cross Braces

For added seat support, add three 2x4 x 15” cross braces inside the frame approximately 19 inches apart.

Mina Starsiak of Good Bones partners with Lowes. Not to be used for alternative clients/purposes.

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Step 3: Lay Seat Boards

Cut five 1x4s to 6’8” in length. Attach them with screws along the top of the frame to make the seat.

Step 4: Add Swing Supports

Run two 2x4s lengthwise along the bottom of the frame. One should attach at the front of the frame and one at the back of the frame. There should be about 4”-5” of overhang on each side. This is where the eye hooks will be placed to connect the rope.

Step 5: Attach Seat Back (Door)

Attach the door vertically to the backside of the frame using decking screws.

Step 6: Add Armrests

Start by screwing together the upright piece and the armrest. The upright 2x4 should measure 12” and the armrest 2x4 should be the same size as the seat, about 17-1/2”. Screw the armrest from the back and underneath or toenail the screws using a Kreg jig. Repeat for the other side of the swing.

Step 7: Add Style With Spindles

Use furniture legs or spindles for decorative pieces under the armrest. Make a pattern or keep all pieces the same. Space the spindles evenly then attach them to the seat and the armrest using a nail gun.

Mina Starsiak of Good Bones partners with Lowes. Not to be used for alternative clients/purposes.

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Step 8: Paint

Paint the entire swing using an exterior-rated paint and primer in one. When it’s completely dry, fill nail holes with putty.

Mina Starsiak of Good Bones partners with Lowes. Not to be used for alternative clients/purposes.

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Step 9: Add Hanging Hardware

Add the four eye bolts to the overhanging sections of 2x4 on the base of the frame, one on each corner. Use the weldless chains to attach the rope to the swing and hang the swing as desired. You may want to consult a contractor to make sure your swing is hung safely and securely.  

Step 10: Make It Comfy

Add outdoor cushions and pillows and enjoy! 

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

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