How to create a base for decking

How do you make a decking base?

Can I build a deck directly on the ground?

Yes, you can build a deck directly on the ground, but with some conditions. The selection of material is critical in building a deck on the ground level — not so much the decking but the substructure. The wrong joist and beam material in contact with the ground will quickly rot, making your deck, garbage.

What is best to put under decking?

Many professional and self-made builders agree that gravel is the perfect material to place under your deck. How can you put gravel as your deck’s base? First, you will need to prepare the installation area and dig a few inches out. Then, you’ll need to cover the area with landscaping fabric.

What base do you need for decking?

All decking requires the same materials underneath the frame – ledger, joists, beams & support posts in solid footing. If you‘re building an on-grade deck (a decking structure built just above the ground) then you might not need railings, features, posts or steps.

How do you support a deck?

A concrete “footing” helps support the weight of the deck by spreading out the loads created by each post over a wider area. The wider base also helps prevent frost heave from lifting the deck. The depth of the deck footings will be determined by your local frost line and building codes.

What is the correct way to lay decking boards?

However, every decking timber manufacturer will tell you: the proper way to install a board is ridge side down. The ridges, they say, were designed to let air circulate underneath the boards. This, according to them, prevents the buildup of moisture and, consequently, of mould.

Should you leave gaps between decking?

When installing decking boards, make sure to leave 1/4 to 1/8 inch gaps in between them. This gap will make sure that the deck can breathe, have sufficient drainage, and make it easier to clean. For the gaps, you can use different tools to help you. Some use a 16-penny nail as a reference for the gaps.

Is it better to nail or screw deck boards?

The Consensus: For a deck build it’s best to use a combination of nails and screws. Screws are superior for laying down the decking. They hold things flush better and have a better fastener/tensile strength, which keeps boards from popping up over time.

Should decking be laid grooved side up?

Decking timber usually has ridges that run along the length of the board. Also called “grooves” or “reeds”. These ridges on the board may face up to provide functionality and aesthetics. Or they may be installed facing down, the orientation recommended by manufacturers as the correct way to install them.

Which side of a deck board goes down?

“Bark side down” orients the board so the end grain growth rings curve upward. This creates a crowning warp when wet. As a result, water is shed from the board, as opposed to pooling on it. Also, the exposed board face is heartwood (closer to the tree’s center) versus sapwood, and heartwood is more decay-resistant.

Do you pre drill decking boards?

Predrill the ends of the boards to avoid splitting using two screws where each decking board and joist intersect. Choose your straightest board to be your first piece of decking as it will go right up against the house.

Do you screw deck boards to every joist?

Each board should recieve 2 screws per joist, spaced about an inch from each edge. Using your deck example—you should use nails to attach the joists to the deck framing but use screws to fasten down the decking itself.

Can you turn over deck boards?

They are treated lumber.” You chance you can flip them. There’s no harm in doing so. While you‘re at it, be sure to clean off any debris from the top of the support joists and check for rot at those locations.

How do you blend old and new deck boards?

To better blend new and old deck boards, it is necessary to wash the entire deck. Use a good wood cleaner and a pressure washer to remove any dirt, mold, mildew, and graying from the older deck boards. The newer deck boards will normally have mill glaze on them which can prevent good stain penetration.

Can I put new decking over old decking?

No; this is not a recommended practice. In many decking replacement jobs, joists end up being replaced, repaired or capped. Installing decking over old decking will drastically reduce the lifespan of the material. The joints between two materials will readily trap water in wet environments.

Can you reuse old deck boards?

You can use them for a variety of DIY projects around your home. The repurposed wood can be used to create a workbench, flower boxes (if you are using treated wood, the plants can‘t be edible in nature), picture frames, benches, chairs, tables, or anything else that you can think of when it comes to repurposing.

What can I put on an old wood deck?

  1. SCRAPE OFF LOOSE FINISH. Remove loose paint or opaque deck stain with a paint scraper.
  2. SCRUB THE SURFACE. Use a stiff bristle brush to remove flaking stain or dirt.
  3. APPLY CLEANER. Apply a deck brightener/refinisher product to wood surfaces.

How long will pressure treated deck framing last?

3) A deck built with pressure treated wood will last a long time. Promotional literature promises lifelong performance for pressure treated wood. The Forest Products Laboratory and other research groups have shown that treated wood stakes placed in the ground for more than 40 years remain rot-free.

What is the best wood to use for outdoor decking?

What is the Best Wood for Outdoor Decks?
  • Cedar. Using Cedar for decks is one of the most popular options because of it’s durability and resistance to moisture.
  • Redwood. Redwood is another western soft wood that is frequently used in outdoor deck builds.
  • Pressure Treated Wood.
  • Tropical Hardwoods.
  • Composite Wood.

How do you maintain a pressure treated deck?

  1. Start by cleaning your wood with a cleaner/brightener that contains a mildewcide.
  2. Next, apply a water-repellent for surface protection.
  3. For your pressuretreated lumber to remain in tip-top shape, we suggest maintenance every 12 months.

Can you wrap pressure treated wood with aluminum?

1) Avoid wrapping pressuretreated lumber. Aluminum in contact with pressuretreated lumber can deteriorate fast. If it is necessary to wrap treated wood, a protective layer of house wrap should be applied first. 2) The aluminum should not be installed too tightly.