I received my tax refund today and unfortunately I can't use it to add to the arsenal.
I am going to start building a deck in the next few weeks and have a few questions if anyone has any experience. This will only be a ground level deck as I do not have any doors on the second floor and the yard slopes very little away from the house (probably 2 foot drop over 20 feet).
1. With Indiana's climate, do I need to cement the posts in the ground or can I simply set them on the concrete post bases they sell at the home improvement stores?
2. If I need to cement them in, how deep do the holes need to be?
3. Other than affecting propety taxes, are there any benefits to attaching it to my house versus building it freestanding?
4. Screws or nails?
5. Pressure treated lumber for the surface or something else?
Any help would be appreciated. If anyone has any tips I'd like to hear those as well. Thanks Guys...
Use the cement pre formed bases you saw at Lowes, much easier.
It's best not to attach the deck to the house, in high humidity the deck will swell and can buckle your siding if it's attached to the house, the same goes for cold weather when things shrink.
Use screws! Nails tend to pull up, and there's nothing more annoying than having to grab the hammer and pound the nails back flush, because they will eventually start to pull up.
Use pressure treated wood.
I have built hundreds of them, you need to think of how you plan to use it. I think you should use concrete pilons 6"-12" diameter depending on what size post you use. some places want you to get a building permit if you attach it to the house, if you dont' attach it to the house then you don't need a permit. Always use screws nails work themselves out overtime and a deck if you have a lot of parties it willl weaken over time. I would suggest the ceramic coated type, buy them by the pound not the box it will save you money. The ground around here just gets to soft in my opinion for those concrete risers, I wouldn't use them if you are going to use the deck a lot and have a lot of guest on it. Treated lumber is mostly what I have used, Cedar is nice but pricey. I built one deck that had a layout like you describe I had to build steps out the back going up to the deck and another set going into the yard. It looked good I also built it unattached by 1/8th inch from the house. When you put your spindles on predrill your holes they will crack in short order, and put 2 in the top and one in the bottom. This will keep them from bowing side to side. Hopes this helps, I will check back in a few days.
My friend built a deck using planks that are recycled plastic and wood pulp.
Very nice, but very expensive.
Stuff is tough and doesn't warp or need to be treated every year.
I built two of them: one with the Trex composite decking and the other with standard treated wood. The next one will be with Trex, despite the higher cost. The maintenance-free life cycle is what attacts me to the composite material, plus the uniformity of the planks.
I used concrete footings with a lag bolt embedded in the concrete. I like the idea that the deck is secured to the ground when the wind gets high. After excavating the holes with a posthole digger, I will enlarge the bottom of the hole so that it resembles a bell shape, to prevent frost heaving.
I'll admit it would be fun to see a tornado come to my yard....I figure the house, that I didn't build, will be gone but my decks will still be intact!
1. cement the posts in the ground.
2. they need to be at least below the frost line, wich is 24inches here in southern IN. probably deeper up north. One thing to keep in mind is to make sure the bottom of your post hole is at solid soil. What i mean is sometimes the backfill around a house is pretty deep. 2 foot deep might be still in the unsettled soil. As long as post bottom is at solid dirt level and below frostline the post when cemented in will not heave or move!
3.Taxes?..... Don't ask don't tell! This is your house, right? Attach it to the Rimjoist/bandboard of the house. If vinyl sided, cut out where your 2X10 needs to go and put J channel around it. Make sure you add an inch or whatever your decking thickness is. Use lagscrews to fasten to house. Your deck will be much stronger and you'll have less post holes to dig.
4. Stainless Screws, you won't regret it.
5.They all have their pro's/cons, come down to personal choice.Let your wife and buget decide this one!