Patio covers shall be permitted to be detached from or attached to dwelling units. Patio covers shall be used only for recreational, outdoor living purposes and not as carports, garages, storage rooms or habitable rooms.
The following term shall, for the purposes of this appendix, have the meaning shown herein. Refer to Chapter 2 of this code for general definitions.
PATIO COVER. A structure with open or glazed walls that is used for recreational, outdoor living purposes associated with a dwelling unit.
EXTERIOR WALLS AND OPENINGS
I103.1 Enclosure walls.
Enclosure walls shall be permitted to be of any configuration, provided the open or glazed area of the longer wall and one additional wall is equal to at least 65 percent of the area below a minimum of 6 feet 8 inches (2032 mm) of each wall, measured from the floor. Openings shall be permitted to be enclosed with insect screening, approved translucent or transparent plastic not more than 0.125 inch (3.2 mm) in thickness, glass conforming to the provisions of Chapter 24 or any combination of the foregoing.
I103.2 Light, ventilation and emergency egress.
Exterior openings of the dwelling unit required for light and ventilation shall be permitted to open into a patio structure. However, the patio structure shall be unenclosed if such openings are serving as emergency egress or rescue openings from sleeping rooms. Where such exterior openings serve as an exit from the dwelling unit, the patio structure, unless unenclosed, shall be provided with exits conforming to the provision of Chapter 10.
Patio covers shall be limited to one-story structures not more than 12 feet (3657 mm) in height.
I105.1 Design loads.
Patio covers shall be designed and constructed to sustain, within the stress limits of this code, all dead loads plus a minimum vertical live load of 10 pounds per square foot (0.48 kN/m2) except that snow loads shall be used where such snow loads exceed this minimum. Such patio covers shall be designed to resist the minimum wind and seismic loads set forth in this code.
In areas with a frost depth of zero, a patio cover shall be permitted to be supported on a concrete slab on grade without footings, provided the slab conforms to the provisions of Chapter 19 of this code, is not less than 31/2 inches (89 mm) thick and further provided that the columns do not support loads in excess of 750 pounds (3.36 kN) per column.
2015 International Building Code