THE IMPORTANCE OF YOUR DECK’S STRUCTURE
BY DECK EXPERT, JAMES SWANSON
Have you ever tried to sit on a three legged stool and then realized one of the legs is missing? You and the stool will fall over. Well, your deck is no different! There are three very critical attachment points on a deck and if one of them gives out, the deck WILL collapse. Therefore, we refer to the structure of a deck as a three-legged stool.
These THREE very critical attachment points are:
The first major connection point for a deck is called the ledger. The ledger board is what connects the deck to your home. This connection requires ½-inch galvanized through-bolts installed with nuts and washers. It should include four bolts on the end of each ledger, as well as a staggered up and down bolting pattern with the bolts closer together than they are on most older decks.
In Georgia, we are allowed to embed a structural wet pressure-treated 6”x6” support post in concrete or have the post sitting on top of a concrete footing, both of which are not ideal. Installed this way, moisture will eventually be soaked up into the 6”x6” posts, which will lead to movement such as twisting, warping, and cupping. A better, longer-lasting method of installation is to use a galvanized standoff post-base connector to properly attach the support post to the concrete footing. Pictured here.
The support posts are located on the underside of the outer band of the deck (or the side furthest from the house). Rather than using screws or nails to connect the support posts to the outer band, it is much better to install galvanized post-top connectors where each 6”x6” pressure-treated support post is attached to the outer band of the deck. This minimizes the separation and movement which is common when wood-to-wood connections are simply nailed, or even screwed, together.
Future blog posts will discuss two more very important attachment points on a deck…
- Is my Guardrail Failing?
- Are my stairs properly attached
CONTACT OUTBACK DECK FOR A FREE CONSULTATION TODAY!
About Outback Deck, Inc.
Outback Deck, Inc. brings inspiration to outdoor living spaces. We believe if you have an outdoor space, you should WANT to spend time in it. Outback is committed to serving our customers in Cobb, Cherokee and the surrounding areas. Our commitment to providing the best customer experience and creating outstanding value in your new deck or porch is unmatched in the industry. For more information, please visit www.outbackdeck.net life happens out back