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What are the Top 10 Deck Design Mistakes?

Deck mistakes are as common as sand on the beach. A simple online search for deck disasters can turn up a plethora of articles and videos detailing deck collapses, both humorous and not, that may be traced back to building mistakes.

Top 10 Deck Design Mistakes

Building a kompositterrasse is a huge task, despite what many home renovation television shows may lead viewers to assume. There are several design and safety considerations to be made, as well as a number of hazards to avoid. This post will go through some of the most common deck construction blunders and how to avoid them.

Improperly attaching the ledger board to the house

Improperly attaching the ledger board to the house

Half of the weight of a deck is sometimes shifted to a ledger board attached to the side of a home. The ledger board transforms into a beam, capable of supporting thousands of pounds of weight in the air. This weight must be shifted to the house’s structural components, not the house’s outside siding or skin covering. Furthermore, the ledger board must be linked to the house so that it does not move away from it, resulting in a catastrophic failure and collapse.  

Attaching the beam to the support posts incorrectly

It’s possible to build a komposit terrasse without posts, with the joists resting on a concrete grade beam. These are the most secure decks. Most decks, on the other hand, are four or more feet from the ground. The deck joists are usually supported by a beam at the far end of the deck, away from the house. This beam, in turn, requires posts that reach down to the ground to support it. Consider the posts to be the legs of a table or chair. The beam might spin and fall off the posts if it is not properly fastened to the posts. This mistake can lead to the system collapsing.

Using incorrect deck fasteners

It’s all too simple to make the error of utilizing the incorrect deck fasteners. Installers may have been spotted firing nails into wood decking as quickly as a kitten sucks milk from a dish with a nail gun. The nail gun is a good idea, but the quality of the corrosion resistance on the actual nail is what matters. Always use corrosive-resistant deck fasteners, regardless of how you secure your decking. Many have thin electroplated galvanized coatings that are of poor quality.

Deck joists are spacing incorrectly

Deck joists are spacing incorrectly

The space between deck joists is more essential than you would believe. When utilizing composite decking, this is especially true. Composite decking spacing is crucial because it prevents the decking planks from sagging over time.

Restricting or prohibiting access or egress

When you think about it, your deck is an outside room. You need convenient deck access just as much as you need simple access into each room of your house. You should be able to securely access and exit the deck with no obstacles in your way.

Installing Handrails Improperly (or Not Installing Them At All!)

Handrails and guardrails are required safety elements on decks. When railings must be installed and how strong they must be are both specified in the building code. Handrails aren’t usually necessary on ground-level decks, but they’re a smart idea once the deck surface is two or more feet above the ground.

Furthermore, railings are frequently disregarded during the design process of a deck construction, which is a mistake in and of itself. Because railing is one of the most expensive and visible components of an outdoor area, it’s critical to think about your alternatives carefully and early in the process. Railings, like shutters, are an architectural component that should compliment your property and express your personality.

Deck post footers that aren’t strong enough

A deck post footer, also known as a footing, is where all of the deck’s weight is transmitted to the earth underneath it. Keep in mind that the strengths of various soils vary greatly. Some soils are so poor that you can easily poke a stick down into them. Other soils are like rock in terms of hardness and strength.

Choosing the wrong decking material

You must compare decking materials thoroughly early in the deck-building process. The manner you frame your deck is determined by the type of decking you use. Don’t make the mistake of assuming that all decking is put in the same way.

Failure to properly install flashing

Many homeowners and inexperienced builders ignore the need for deck flashing. It’s all too common for it to be installed incorrectly or not at all. Deck flashings are materials that collect water and route it to the house’s outside skin. Solid copper, zinc-coated steel, and rubberized synthetic membranes are some of the materials used to make flashing.

Failure to follow local building codes or obtain proper permits

Almost every city and municipality in the United States needs a deck permit. In addition, while filing for a permit, several jurisdictions need stamped building plans from engineers. Unfortunately, the permit does not guarantee that the deck will be examined in some cities or municipalities. Before you start planning your deck, you should check with your local building department.

You must also check that your deck design complies with local building requirements and safety regulations. Know your setbacks and easements, which are especially critical in covenanted and restricted areas. Fines can be substantial, and delays can be costly. When you try to sell your property and a prospective buyer or home inspector discovers there is no permit on file with the local building authority, it might be an issue.

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