A properly-built deck may last for years. But a deck that’s rotting or missing fasteners, or that moves when you walk onto it, could be dangerous. Decks built by inexperienced do-it-yourselfers, not inspected when they were built, or more than 10 years old (building codes were different back then!) are prone to serious problems. Every year, everyone is severely injured, even killed, when decks like these fall down. This has usually happened during parties if the Lincoln deck repair was filled up with guests.
Now for the good thing. Many of the fixes are quick, inexpensive as well as simple. Home centers and lumberyards carry the instruments and materials you’ll need. Or visit strongtie.com to locate local stores that stock anchors, post bases and connectors.
On this page, we’ll reveal to you the signals of the dangerous deck-and the ways to fix the down sides. If you’re still unsure whether your deck is safe, have it inspected by your local building inspector.
Fasten the ledger on the house with lag screws. Drive them fast by using a corded drill and socket. Every lag screw must have a washer.
The ledger board holds in the end in the deck that’s up against the house. When the ledger isn’t well fastened, the deck can just fall from the house. A building inspector we talked with said the most frequent downside to DIY decks is ledger boards not properly fastened on the house. For the strong connection, a ledger needs 1/2-in. x 3-in. lag screws (or lag bolts if you have access in the inside to fasten the washers and nuts) driven every 16 in. This ledger board was fastened mostly with nails as an alternative to lag screws (with out washers).
Starting at one end from the ledger board, drill two 1/4-in. pilot holes. Cancel out the holes and so the top isn’t aligned using the bottom hole. Then drive the lag screws (with washers) employing a drill as well as an impact socket (you’ll need to have a socket adapter that suits within your drill). Don’t countersink the screws-that only weakens the ledger board.
Fill every nail hole in joist hangers, using joist hanger nails only. If you discover other nails, replace all of them with joist hanger nails.
Granted there are plenty of nail holes within a joist hanger-however they all must be filled. Otherwise, the hangers can pull loose in the ledger board or rim joist. Deck builders sometimes drive a number of nails into the hangers to keep them in position, then forget to include others later. This deck had simply a single nail in many joist hangers. In other places, it had a bad nails. Joist hanger nails will be the only nails acceptable. These short, fat, galvanized nails were created to carry the hangers set up under heavy loads and resist corrosion from treated lumber.
Prop within the deck with temporary braces so that you can remove the rotted post. Stop jacking when you hear the deck begin to creak.
Deck posts that rest right on footings experience water and they rot, especially posts that aren’t pressure treated (this way one, that is cedar). Because the post rots, it loses its strength and can’t secure the deck’s weight. Newer decks retain the concrete footings a number of inches above ground and utilize an exclusive base bracket to hold the posts dry. Replacing a rotted post is the ideal solution. Before eliminating the post, be sure you have everything required for the replacement, including a wedge anchor.
Clear grass or stone from the bottom of your deck post. Prod along the foot of the post with a screwdriver or perhaps awl. When the wood is spongy or pieces easily peel away, you’ll must replace the post. Start with nailing 2x4s or 2x6s together to use as temporary braces. Place scrap wood on the ground to get a pad within 3 ft. in the post being replaced, then set a hydraulic jack over it. Cut the brace to size, set one end on the jack and put one other end beneath the rim joist. Slowly jack up the brace until it’s wedged tight. Take care not to overdo it. You’re just bracing the deck, not raising it. In the event you hear the joist boards creak, then stop. Then place a 2nd brace on the other side of the post (Photo 1). (In the event you don’t have jacks, you may rent them.) Or you can set your temporary braces entirely on the pads and drive shims between your posts and the rim joist.
Mark the post location on the footing, then remove the post by cutting with the fasteners that tie it on the rim joist. Work with a metal blade within a reciprocating saw (or knock out of the post having a hammer). If there’s already a bolt sticking from the footing, utilize it to put in a brand new post base. If not, you’ll need to give a 3/8- by 4-in. wedge anchor. Accomplish this by placing the post base on the marks where the old post sat, then mark the center. Eliminate the post base and drill the center mark with a 3/8-in. masonry bit. Drill down 3 in., then blow the dust out of the hole.
Tap the anchor in to the hole with a hammer (Photo 2). Install the post base over the anchor. As you may tighten the nut on the anchor, the clip expands and wedges tight from the hole’s walls to support itself into position.
Cut a treated post to match between your post base and the top of the rim joist. Set the post into place and tack it on the post base with 8d or 10d galvanized nails (Photo 3). Place a level alongside the post. When it’s plumb (straight), tack it into position on the rim joist. Then use a connector and drive carriage bolts through the rim joist (see Problem 4 below).
Strengthen post connections with carriage bolts. Drill holes, knock the bolts through, then tighten a washer and nut on the other side.
Ideally, posts should sit directly under the beam or rim joist to assist the deck. When the posts are fastened to the side of your beam or rim joist, much like the one shown here, the body weight is defined about the fasteners that connect the post towards the deck. This deck had only three nails in the post-a recipe for collapse. Nails alone aren’t strong enough for this particular job, regardless how many you use. For the strong connection, you will need 1/2-in.-diameter galvanized carriage bolts.
Add a couple of these bolts by drilling 1/2- in. holes with the rim joist and post. An 8-in.-long 1/2-in. drill bit costs $10. The length of the bolts depends upon the size of your post and the thickness from the rim joist (add them and buy bolts no less than 1 in. longer than your measurement). We used 8-in. bolts, which experienced two 1-1/2- in. rim joists as well as a 3-1/2-in. post. Tap the bolts through having a hammer, then add a washer and nut on the opposite side.
Stiffen a wobbly deck with a diagonal brace run from corner to corner. Drive two nails per joist.
Should your deck turns into a case of your shakes whenever you walk across it, there’s probably no reason at all for concern. Still, sometimes, the deck movement puts extra stress around the fasteners and connectors. After a while, the joists can pull outside the rim joist or ledger board and twist out of their vertical position, which weakens them. Fastening angle bracing underneath the deck will stiffen it and obtain the sway. The braces are mainly hidden from view and let you walk on your deck without feeling like it’s gonna fall down at any moment.
Manage a treated 2×4 diagonally from corner to corner, underneath the deck. Drive two 16d galvanized nails through the brace into each joist. If your single board won’t span the distance, use two, overlapping the braces by a minimum of two joists. Cut the bracing flush together with the outside edge of the deck.
Pry the siding out of the house and take off the deck board that’s across the ledger to remove how for brand new flashing.
The spot round the ledger board should be watertight. Even small leaks can bring about mold inside of the walls of your home and, worse, the house rim joist (which supports the ledger) will rot as well as the ledger will fall off. Stand or crawl underneath the deck and check out the ledger board. When you don’t notice a metal or plastic lip over the top of the ledger board, add the flashing. Flashing was completely missing from this deck.
To provide flashing, first take away the deck board that runs alongside your home. When the boards run diagonally, snap a chalk line 5-1/2 in. through the house, then set the blade within a circular saw for the depth of your decking boards and stop the board ends. (Replace the cutouts at the end of the work having a 5-1/2-in.-wide board installed parallel on the house.)
For vinyl, wood or some other lap siding, work a flat bar underneath the siding and gently pull out the nails (Photo 1). Insert the flashing behind the siding (Photo 2). In case you have a brick or stucco house, it is likely you won’t see any flashing since the ledgers tend to be installed directly over brick or stucco.
We used vinyl flashing, but you can even use galvanized metal or aluminum flashing. At every joist location, come up with a small cut from the flashing lip having a utility knife so it’ll lie flat on the joists. All of those other lip should fit over the top edge of the ledger board.
You have to have flashing underneath the bottom edge of the ledger too. But since there’s no way to incorporate it without eliminating the ledger board, have a bead of acrylic caulk along the bottom of the ledger board to seal out water (Photo 3).
Strengthen a loose railing post with carriage bolts. Drill a couple of holes with the post and framing. Angle the hole to avoid joist hangers.
Loose railings won’t result in your deck falling down, nevertheless, you could tumble off deck contractor Lincoln NE. Railing posts attached simply with nails will likely come loose, and no matter how many new nails you drive into them, you won’t solve the problem. Instead, add carriage bolts. Look at the thickness of the post and rim joist, then buy 1/2-in.- diameter galvanized carriage bolts that length plus 1 in. Get a nut and washer for every single. Drill two 1/2-in. holes from the post and rim joist. Counterbalance the holes, keeping one about 1-1/2 in. from the top of the the joist and also the other a similar distance from the bottom (make sure to avoid drilling where a joist abuts the rim joist). Tap the carriage bolts with the holes, then tighten the nuts until the bolt heads are set flush using the post.