Deck installation does not have to be expensive and deck construction does not have to be difficult to do. Even a small deck should provide enough space for some patio furniture and relaxing in the sun. A deck keeps people happy and socially active, and a deck of any size is a great location for a grill. All of these things considered, it’s no wonder that home decks have become an American tradition.
Setting the Foundation for the Deck
A deck will last much longer when it’s set on eight inch concrete blocks, which will keep it two inches away from any damp ground after each block is placed a hole that is 6 inches deep. These holes should be up to 3 feet apart and at least 6 inches deep in order to properly secure the stability and reliability of the deck. You should mark where the holes are after outlining the size and the shape of the deck on the ground, using spray paint, and marking a site for each post along the deck lines.
After digging the holes that will hold the concrete blocks, the soil in the base of each hole should be compacted by tamping it down. Two inches of gravel should be placed in each hole and should also be tamped until compact. Be sure to add water to the concrete mix to allow any air bubbles to escape and for the mixture to settle.
You will need to ensure that the concrete blocks are level when they have been placed into the holes. If the decking is not directly next to a wall you should drive one wood stake into the ground one foot away from a hole in the back edge and another one a foot away from the side of where the finished deck will be.
After placing the eight inch concrete blocks into each hole, make them all level by tying a piece of string to the first stake and attach the other end to the second stake. Allow the string to lie on top of two blocks between the stakes and hook a level onto the string. Use your leveler to make sure everything is on par with everything else.
Use a rubber mallet to tap down the concrete blocks until they are both at the same level. Move one of the stakes and drive it into the ground one foot away from another block and repeat the process until all the blocks are exactly the same level. Where there is not enough space for a stake to be placed one foot away from the block, you can attach the string with tape to the nearest wall.
It's recommended that you use galvanized nails and galvanized screws in deck construction. It will make it last longer and there will be no rusting, which you get from standard nails and screws, so there will be no nasty rust stains on the wood of the deck.
Cut the Boards
You will need a circular saw to cut your boards. Always remember to wear safety goggles when you are cutting. Depending on the dimensions of your deck, you’ll need to measure out what size the baseboards are going to be, and make the appropriate incisions. Construct a rectangle from the boards you have already nailed together to form the frame for the deck. This entire unit will be pieced on top of the concrete blocks.
Strengthen the Frame
To strengthen the frame you will need to screw an angle bracket into each inside corner. Then you will need to nail some galvanized joist hangers, no more than 12 inches apart, on the inside of the long frame edges. Slide joists into the hangers and nail these into place. Cut all the decking boards to the required measurement and place these across the top of the frame. Deck installation will be complete when you have screwed the boards firmly onto the frame.
If any of these directions appeared confusing or too difficult to perform on your own, please refer to our top quality field experts for deck installation. Here at homeyou, our network of trained, professional deck installation contractors can construct your deck professionally, affordably, and durably enough to stand for years!