Building Your Deck in 6 Steps
Plan, Plan, Plan
Pay close attention to your building materials and style accents. From classic pressure-treated lumber to weather-resistant wood composite, the choice is yours! There are plenty of stunning deck designs, layouts, and ideas to play around with!
Note: Be sure to follow local zoning bylaws and obtain any required building permits.
Basic Questions to Answer
Determine your foundation spacing and add your posts, using more strings for alignment. Plumb bobs will help to mark the spot where you can add your stakes.
Remember that if you’re stuck at any time, you can visit your local Lowe’s for more assistance.
Strong Foundations Rule!
Roll out landscape fabric and cut openings for your post holes. After scooping concrete mix up to building code level, add your posts and fill in the rest of hole with gravel. Use your post level and layout strings to make sure each post is perfectly centered and aligned. Pour gravel over the rest of your landscape fabric, and allow your footings to set over a few days.
Make a mark on your posts where the top of your beam should line up. Once you’ve installed cleats to each of your posts, place your beam above them and secure in place. Wearing a face mask, cut off the remaining block of wood from each of your posts.
Way to go, you’ve just made your foundation!
Time To Get Building
When the frame is complete, lay down your boards and drill two nails per joist along each plank. Place a nail between decking boards to allow enough space for proper drainage. Grooved boards are another available option that hide visible nails or screws. Every few boards, use your measuring tape to check that you’re still on track with your deck plans. Use string as your guide to cut excess wood from the edges of your frame.
You’re almost there. It’s time to start adding your stairs.
Once you have the materials you need, mark on the joist where your stairs will meet the deck. (This may be covered by your building code.) Attach your stringers with support brackets and bolts as needed. Add your treads, and your stairs are complete. You’ve stepped it up, and now you’re finally ready to finish it off.
Almost Beer Time
Install lattice skirting, fascia, or post caps as the finishing touch. You’ll also need lighting to improve visibility (plus, it’ll add some extra charm to your backyard). As one last safety check, ask for one last building inspection and contact your local recycling centre to dispose of your treated lumber. Apply weather sealer for protection, and visit a nearby Lowe’s store to recycle your paint.
Dress it up with modern furnishings, container plants, or any other outdoor decor trends that suit your taste!
Congratulations! You’ve built yourself an eye-catching, one-of-a-kind deck. Break out the BBQ and have some fun!
Ready To Build?
SOME FAQs ANSWERED TO HELP YOU COMPLETE YOUR DECK PLANS:
Post holes in Canada need to be dug to a depth below the frost line. A rule of thumb is minimum 4 ft.
Note: Deck posts should not be placed into the ground. Instead, a concrete pier should be poured with a post bracket anchored on top.
There are pluses for both. Pressure treated is easy to work with and cost effective, but doesn't last as long as composite and is harder to maintain. Cedar lasts longer than pressure treated, however, it's also more expensive.
Traditional wood decks have a lifespan of 10 to 15 years. Composite decking, which is more expensive, is weather, insect, and rot resistant, making it last for 25 to 30 years or longer.
That said, most decks frames are built out pressure treated pine as this material is durable, easy to work with and relatively inexpensive.
How to Terms
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