Many homeowners think they can build a deck; yet every year, hundreds of people are injured from poorly constructed decks. Most deck failures can be attributed to improper installation and lack of yearly maintenance. It’s clear: decks that are improperly built are dangerous, and can collapse causing injury or death.
In recent years, emerging technologies and new materials require a more in-depth knowledge of industry codes and best practices to successful build a deck. There is a plethora of bad information concerning deck building, which perpetuates bad decisions and poor deck construction. In this blog, we hope to mitigate these issues, as we discuss the top mistakes people make when building a new deck for their home.
Deck Boards Are Not Straight
Obviously, this is not a structural issue, but it does happen quite a bit with unprofessional DIY projects. The easiest way to lay decking boards straight is to use a grid board to a straight line. To get your straight line for your grid boards use a chalk line to mark out where they go. A chalk line is a string line covered in chalk, and when flicked against the timber, it leaves a straight line that can be used as a guide. From here, nail off all your grid boards completely. Now go through and install the remainder of the boards using timber wedges cut from decking off cuts (off cuts are the left over short pieces of decking) to evenly space the boards in between the grid boards.
Steps With Missing Railings or Open Risers
For many, open space between deck steps can be dangerous: your feet can get caught between the steps, which can often result in injury. Also, open risers lead many to believe that the stars are unfinished. For a more professional appearance, we suggest covering the risers. Be sure to install a secure railing on your deck steps to help prevent falls and injuries.
Wrong Deck Materials
Your deck must face the harsh New England weather 24/7, so it’s only natural that it will receive some wear and tear; however, it is absolutely essential that your deck is built with longevity and safety in mind. If you use cheap or improper materials will mean that your deck will deteriorate at a quicker pace, increasing the risk of accidents, as well. Always build a deck using materials that were specifically made to withstand tough weather.
Attempting DIY When You Don’t Have The Proper Skills
If you are ready to begin a home remodeling project and are unsure about your DIY skills, it is important not to make that journey alone. A trusted contractor can act as your guide throughout the entire process, making sure you stay on budget, everything is installed correctly and taking care of any government licenses. You can, of course, do these things by your own but a professional makes the processes much easier. However, there are some contractors that will take advantage of a homeowner’s lack of expertise in home remodeling. Therefore, it is important to research several companies and feel confident in your chosen remodeling contractor.
The process of CT deck remodeling may sound easy, and for experienced builders, it is. To put it simply, we have better tools and more experience. We are familiar with the materials and hardware, and we have done it many times. With experienced builders, you can expect that we will get it done faster, that we are familiar with zoning laws and building codes and that your deck will last longer.
Fiderio & Sons | CT Custom Decks
At Fiderio & Sons, we create beautiful custom CT decks that meet all building specifications, codes and safety requirements. We are experts at executing stunning designs, drawings, permit applications and construction of custom CT decks. See our portfolio for inspiration, and remember to be creative. Make the deck whatever you want it to be!