When it comes to DIY deck installations, there are a lot of things to consider before diving in head first. From the type of material to the proper building codes and more, ensure you have some of the basics to set you up for a successful installation.
Here are some of FL Home Supply’s recommended things to consider when completing a DIY deck installation:
- Plan ahead.
When installing a new deck to your home, it’s important to think about everything that may need extra planning so you can finish the job on time, successfully and within budget. Consider things like: how much time it will take to complete; how much manpower you have/is needed; what time of year it is (summer months in Florida may cause a delay due to more rain); how solid your current foundation is and how long it could take to build a new one; how much your preferred deck style will cost; if a permit is required; etc.
- Follow the code.
With any major home-improvement project like this, there are typically a few local building codes associated with it, which means that you must obtain a permit prior to installation. Additionally, there may be other rules or restrictions from your homeowner association (HOA) to pay attention to before you get started, such as specific regulations on deck size, color, design, material type, etc.
- Consider how you’ll use your deck.
The next thing to think about is how you’ll be using your deck. Will it be strictly for weekend lounging and relaxing? If so, you’ll want something low maintenance and easy to clean. Will it be used more heavily for grilling and throwing parties? If so, you’ll want something designed to resist grease and other stains. Whatever you use your deck for, be sure the material complements it well so you can make the best investment possible.
- Choose your deck style and material.
There are several different options to choose from, and depending on how you plan on using it or where you live, the best option may be vary from home to home. The most popular options are treated or naturally weather-resistant wood, and composite material. Find all the great decking materials offered at FL Home Supply by looking online, including pressure-treated pine, Trex Select® Decking options, and more.
- Create a seamless look with an exterior-use fastener.
For a truly a seamless deck, opt for a fastening option that attaches screws from below or at an angle from the edge so you don’t see where they are fastened in. Before installing, though, make sure your fasteners are rated for exterior use (labeled as deck screws or deck nails).
- Give your boards some space.
Because wood tends to expand and contract over time, and especially in warmer climates, it’s a good idea to space your boards apart (typically about ⅛ inch) enough to give them room to move a little. There are spacers designed for this specific purpose, or you can substitute screws being used while installing.
- Apply a protective finish to your boards.
Having a wood deck in Florida means having a strong protective coat of finish to ensure its look and durability are kept up over the years. Remember, with treated lumber, you may need to wait a few months before applying a finish, depending on the treatment type.