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How to properly plan for the installation of a
wood deck, some things to consider.
Tools / Materials (See Below for
Installing a wood deck can do wonders to your
house--it gives you a practical extension of the living space of
your house on the outside. If it is carefully planned out,
with minimal maintenance, you'll have a great deck on which to enjoy
the outside and even use it as an area to entertain your guests.
With the above in mind, particularly the need to
perform a quality installation for minimal maintenance in the
future, when specifically planning for the installation of a wood
deck, there are many aspects of a wood deck that you must consider
in advance, and they include the following:
Type of wood deck. The type of wood
deck you will use in the installation of your deck will
determine the extent of your maintenance routine; cheap wood
deck material will, in the long run, cost time and money to
maintain. In fact, if you purchase pressure-treated wood
for your deck, make sure you give such wood about two to three
weeks to cure/dry; wood that is installed while not dry tend to
inevitably crack soon after installation.
Rain-runoff control. Your wood deck
will be subject to the outdoor elements 24/7. It should
not need to unnecessarily bear more exposure than is necessary,
and this is especially true as to rain runoff. Rain that
runs down the roof overhangs should not accumulate on the deck,
but be drawn into metal-mesh vents that will ultimately lead
the water away from the house; these metal-mesh vents should be
installed within the deck, right below the roof overhangs--level
with all other wood boards as if these vents were also wood
boards--to capture the rain runoff.
Fasteners. When considering what
fasteners you will use to securely install your wood deck, what
should be a priority feature in your fastener is its
longevity in staying securely fastened. Ultimately, the
fastener types come down to nails and screws. Between
these two types of fasteners, screws-particularly galvanized
screws made for decks--are the best way to go when your priority
is the longevity of fasteners staying in place. Over time,
nails often "pop" up as the deck is used and inherent pressure
is applied on the deck boards.
Deck finishes. There is a variety of
deck finish products on the market. If you choose to stain
your deck, to make it worthy of the effort you'll put in to
apply it, get a deck finish product that is specially made to
endure heavy foot traffic; for products that have this special
feature, it should be noted on their respective product labels.
Lighting. You may want to lighten your
deck with low-voltage outdoor lights. If this is the case,
early on make sure that you will have outdoor GFCI-protected outlets installed
and accessible for this specific purpose. Alternatively,
you may consider utilizing the relatively new advent of advanced
solar-energized lights that can be simply attached to deck and
provide light for usually six or more hours. (For those who do
not know what GFCI stands for, it means ground-fault circuit
interrupter, which is a safety feature that helps prevent
electrocution in the event of an electrical hazard.)
These are just some of the aspects of decking you
should consider when planning the installation of your own deck.
Handyman Zone Team
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