For questions generally relating to outdoor, semi-elevated, non-enclosed structures such as decks, gazebos, pergolas, etc.

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1answer
26 views

Adding height to an exsisting deck support pole

I have a small 5'x 8' deck platform that is 30" lower then my main deck. I would like to raise that platform to the existing height of my main deck. The platform has 4" x 6" supports set in concrete ...
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2answers
200 views

Is deck joist sistering a sloppy repair?

I have a few bad deck joists that I replaced with new PT joists. These repairs are great. Now I have a few more not too bad joists that will be rotted in a few years. I am thinking to add new PT ...
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1answer
165 views

Freestanding deck - should I use joist hangers or bugle screws to attach joists to the bearers?

I'm planning a freestanding deck in the back yard, and I noticed that in this video they suggested that you could use bugle screws instead of joist hangers. Since I don't have a ledger board at either ...
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1answer
158 views

How to seal seams between wooden deck rails?

A contractor apparently did not a good job on rebuilding my deck and after a couple of months caulking in between wooden moving deck railings doesn't provide any sealing from water dripping into the ...
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1answer
3k views

Can I build a deck close to the ground? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Can I build a deck this low to the ground? Every set of instructions I've seen for building a deck requires me to put joists on top of beams attached to posts. But I ...
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2answers
26 views

Do I need ledger board when expand deck?

I have a deck like below and I want to expand the direction where the arrow shows (sorry for an ugly photo). Do I need to put a ledger board right on the trim joist, or can I just hang the new ...
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1answer
40 views

Can I use two 2x8 beams instead of one 4x8 beam for deck?

I am trying to "optimize" materials purchase when building a deck. So I got two questions: Is two 2x8x16 beams the same as one 4x8x16 beam for deck support? Do I need to bolt / nail them together or ...
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1answer
31 views

Cracks in deck supports

I have a deck supported by 6x6s. Two of which seem to be developing some sizable cracks. Should I be concerned? Can I repair / reinforce the posts?
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1answer
259 views

What size posts for elevated Kids play house?

I'm building an elevated kid's play house. The raised platform will be 6' - 8' off the ground. The platform will be 8' x 10', the house will take up half of the platform and maybe less. I'm planning ...
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2answers
1k views

Adding rebar to deck footings and piers?

I've heard a few people mention adding rebar to deck footings and piers to make them stronger, but I haven't been able to find any details on how exactly to do this. Is it sufficient to just hammer ...
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1answer
109 views

Does a contract to build a deck need an occupancy clause?

I am replacing an exterior deck. I've had several contractors out to give quotes, accepted an estimate from one, and am now in the position of signing (or not) a contract for the work. It's a lump sum ...
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1answer
484 views

How to fix sagging composite deck railing

I have a composite deck (Fiberon boards with a Trex Designer railing system). The guy that built the deck didn't install any of the crush/foot blocks and now the railings are sagging. He's no longer ...
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2answers
144 views

Using old roof footings for a ground-level deck

I had a 40 year-old, asphalt shingled, hip roof (14x18) over a concrete patio that had 4 posts w/footings that supported it in a line opposite the house. The footings, that are still there and were ...
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1answer
73 views

how do i replace a fence post that was also used as a deck footing?

So I removed the old broken 4x4 post that was for the fence and deck. I have the deck sitting on stone slab after I held it up with a jack. It had two bolts that I had to cut out that are still in ...
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1answer
1k views

How can I secure these inadequate/leaning deck supports?

I am in the process of buying a house. The home inspector noted problems with the deck, most significantly "leaning posts." What would be required to get those 4x4 supports adequately secured to ...
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3answers
2k views

Concrete Footing or Concrete Blocks For Footings

I'm thinking of building a new deck at my new home that I just moved into. It's going to be a two level one. The highest level will be about 3 feet high. I'm not worried about code because its not ...
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3answers
362 views

Do I need a permit to renovate a porch in NYC?

I want to renovate my 2nd floor porch, but I don't know if NYC requires a permit. My house was built in 1901, and I believe a CO is not needed because of the grandfather clause. But if I make any ...
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1answer
7k views

Can I use aluminum or plastic sheeting between decking and joists to waterproof under a deck?

I'm trying to build a deck where I can use the few feet under it as storage space. I'm thinking of using 8mil (or 10mil, if nessacary) plastic sheet or vinyl sheet between the joists and the ...
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2answers
2k views

What header joist sizes do I need for a loft bed?

I've decided to design and build a king-sized loft bed for our bedroom. Basically, I've got an 80" x 89" frame, 54" off the floor, covered with slats instead of plywood (see image, below). I'm sure ...
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2answers
1k views

What would a bracket for holding 1 5/8" square post be called?

For stabilizing a handrail post, using 1 5/8" square posts, I'm seeking a bracket shaped like so: Where the U shaped bracket would tightly press the post against a surface. First what might this ...
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2answers
25k views

Can I use these post brackets to attach railing posts on top of decking?

I found a Simpson strong tie product (BC40Z) 4x4 half post base, and it states its intended use is for attaching a 4x4 railing post securely on top of wooden decking. The following picture ...
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2answers
2k views

How do I remedy a ledger board that is pulling away from the house?

The ledger board of our deck is attached with nails only. One side is beginning to pull away. I put in more support posts so it is not separating further. What would be best to remedy the ledger ...
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2answers
10k views

What is the best way to seal my deck?

I Have an outside deck, it currently has a layer of varnish on it, I Think the wood type is Meranti. The deck is exposed to lots of rain and also harsh sun, and the varnish has started to peel. I ...
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1answer
401 views

Outside Ceiling Fan Problems: Light But No Fan

Over the course of the winter, the ceiling fan on my screened-in deck stopped working. The attached light still functions properly, so it is definitely getting electricity, but the fan will not ...
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1answer
380 views

Caulking for deck frame

To seal the seam between a doubled joist or beam, what type of caulking is best? The Home Depot Decks 123 book recommends Alex Plus (acrylic latex plus silicone) while a guy at Home Depot suggested ...
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1answer
19 views

Safe deck surround distance for tree

I plan to build a deck around this small bing cherry tree. It's 3" diameter. I will have a beam running around 1 feet next to it on one side. The other 3 sides are flexible in term of what I can do. ...
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1answer
38 views

Fix the big crack on wood post

We moved in a house at Dallas area and the wood post at my deck has a big crack in it, I read some post that it is normal, but if I don't treat it, will it keep cracking. Thanks a lot of any ...
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1answer
40 views

How much extra decking to order to allow for offcuts

I'm ordering decking for my deck and I'm wondering how much extra I should order to allow for the variation in length of the supplied decking? For example my deck is 4100 x 4500 and the decking timber ...
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2answers
166 views

Add slope to existing flat porch/balcony

I have a patio attached to my house (like in the image below) As you can see, it is covered and over my garage. Although it is covered, it still gets rain and snow on it and, unfortunately, the top ...
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1answer
150 views

Attaching a deck ledger to the concrete pad of a detached garage

I am building a deck between my house and the garage. I will support the deck on one side with a ledger on the house and plan to support the other side with a ledger on the garage (with requisite ...
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1answer
390 views

Corner post for flush beam deck

I'm replacing my deck. I would like to use a flush beam (same level as joists) at the edge opposite the ledger because I plan to put a roof over it and I can put the roof posts right on top of the ...
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3answers
509 views

Should I build a deck over my existing concrete patio or other?

I have a very challenging, small, north facing, graded back yard. The lowest portion of the yard is totally unusable. Attached to the house is a small concrete patio slab that at the highest point is ...
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1answer
303 views

Mounting plumbing to existing outdoor deck. What kind of pipes and fittings should I use?

I'd like to install some plumbing underneath my deck to facilitate running a hose on the deck via quick disconnect couplers. My preference is to run schedule 40 PVC pipes underneath the deck. There ...
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1answer
70 views

How can I construct a lightweight privacy panel 3-4ft high by 8ft long or thereabout?

I have a two-story deck with the upper part on the roof, and I lay on top to sunbathe. The top was surrounded by a fence, but after installing solar panels close to the deck I removed a large part of ...
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1answer
694 views

How should I attach a pergola to my rooftop deck?

I know my sketch is pretty rough but I want to add a pergola like this to my rooftop deck. I obviously can't sink the posts into the ground. What is a recommended way of attaching the posts? I was ...
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3answers
2k views

Can I use Murphy's oil soap to remove pine sap from composite decking?

Does anyone know of anyway to remove pine sap from composite decking? I saw some posts that recommended using Murphy's Oil Soap for removing it from wood decks. How to Remove Tree Sap from a Wood ...
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1answer
675 views

Should I use silicone caulk on the side of a deck ledger?

I have a deck ledger attached to the rim joist (the vinyl siding was cut away), and some flashing above the ledger. On the side of the ledger there is a gap between the end of the 2x10, and the ...
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2answers
283 views

Ledger larger than house rim joist

I want to attach a 2x12 ledger to my house, but looking at the rim joist of the house it seems to be a 2x10 sitting on two 2x sill plates. Is it a problem attaching the 2x12 ledger to the 2x10 house ...
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2answers
97 views

Will a mixture of acrylic and oil stains dry?

I mistakenly mixed acrylic and oil stains. While difficult to apply, it does look nice. Will it dry?
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1answer
2k views

Can I turn a 4 X 4 deck post, eight feet high, into a 6 x 6 post by laminating a 2 X 6 and 2 X 4 to it?

My mother-in-law has a deck 8 feet off the ground that is is built with 4 X 4's for support, with only one notched 2 X 6 rim joist on the outerside of the deck which also supports the 2 X 6 joists ...
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1answer
361 views

Is clorox outdoor + jomax safe on vinyl decking?

I used the recipe suggested in this question to successfully clean my vinyl siding. Its a combination of Jomax, Clorox outdoor, and water. I'm wondering if this solution will work fine on my vinyl ...
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0answers
11 views

The right size beams for deck [on hold]

Building a 16'x16'two tiered deck, both sections equal,highest point approx 40"and one step down for second section with steps coming off that to ground.can I sandwich 2 2x8 together for beams or do I ...
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2answers
36 views

Do deck footings need to be spaced evenly?

I am planning to create a deck around 2 trees. Because of a irregular shape of the deck, it's hard to make the footing spacing uniform. I plan to have them 53" apart but some area will have footings ...
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0answers
43 views

Need advice on deck posts that will have concrete poured around them

I have a raised deck, attached to the side of my house on one side and held up by three posts on the other. Under each post is a small cement pad and the posts bracketed to those with a buffer piece ...
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0answers
23 views

How to remove dirt and stains from vinyl decking

I have a vinyl deck that hasn't been cleaned in likely 10 years, save for what little cleaning the rain routinely does. I just recently rented a Black & Decker 1700 PSI pressure washer. I ...
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1answer
65 views

Wood Deck or Cement Pad

I had a larger roof built over my old deck. New 6x6's were used to support the new roof. They set on cement filled 8" tubes set 40 to 46 inches into the ground. I have been told I have to use 2x8 ...
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0answers
45 views

North Carolina Code question for splicing 6x6 posts

I have a 48 X 10 second floor deck with 6X6 posts. I want to add a roof above about half of it. It is not feasible to replace the 6X6's with longer ones as I would basically end up replacing the ...
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0answers
32 views

Deck Ledger with Manufactured Wood Joists

My house came with a second story deck added by the previous owner. The ledger is attached directly over the stucco and is attached to a 1/2 in plywood band board with deck screws. The band board ...
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0answers
60 views

If I'm attaching a freestanding deck to cement landing, is it ok to have it sloped and not perfectly level?

When I took the original measurements of the step height, I didn't take into consideration the sloping cement landing areas off the last step. So my deck height, plus the 1" decking board is about ...
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0answers
124 views

Building an 18' x 8 foot free standing deck with pergola

My plan is to build an 18 x 8 foot free standing deck at the front entrance to my home. Then add a pergola over the entire deck. My area is sandy soil. No underground utilities in the area I want to ...