Know Your Deck Terminology
Before getting started on a deck project, get familiar with the terminology.
Balusters — The vertical boards that attach to the handrails. Sometimes called spindles.
Beams — The horizontal boards that are attached to the post to help carry the weight.
Box Sill — In a building frame it is composed of a plate resting on the basement wall and a joist or header at the outer edge of the plate, as well as a soleplate for the studs resting either directly on the joists or on the rough flooring.
Decking — The boards that span the area over the joists and form the deck floor.
Foundation — Either a concrete pad or post installed on footers.
Furring Boards — Long thin strips of wood used to make existing surfaces support the finished surface, in this case the deck.
Handrails — The horizontal boards that provide safety.
Joists — Typically 2 x 8 boards that are installed perpendicular and between beams to help distribute weight and hold up the decking boards. Joists are usually installed 16 or 24 inches apart.
Rise — Rise is the height of the step
Run — Run is the depth of the step
Staircase Landing — Usually part of the decking plan.
Stringers — The boards that support stairs.
Support Posts — 4 x 4 or 6 x 6 posts that are installed to support the weight of the deck.
Treads — The top boards on a stair.
Accessories for a Backyard Deck
From canopies that simply just snap into place to gadgets that'll keep you cool in summer and warm in the fall, there are many accessories available to liven up a back deck.
Tips for Cleaning and Repairing a Deck
A deck requires regular maintenance to remain in good shape season after season.
Outdoor Wooden Structures: Materials for Fences and Decks
Learn about the different types of materials that can be used to build a wood fence or deck, plus get tips on basic fence construction.
Tips for Applying Deck Sealer
No matter what application method you opt to use, sealant will help prolong the life of your deck.
Deck Maintenance Tips
Follow these tips for cleaning and repairing your outdoor deck.
Add Value With a Back Deck
Transforming an unused backyard into a relaxing outdoor living space increases your home's worth while giving you another place to spend time.
Deck Makeover: Treetop Den
A rickety, unstable deck is transformed into a comfortable, safe spot to hang out.
Knowing and Improving Your Soil
The structure, fertility, drainage and acidity (pH) of your soil all have an impact on the health of the plants. Knowing what type of soil you have and how to improve it will help you to create the best growing environment.
Everything You Need to Know About Walls
Host Jeff Wilson explains how exterior and interior walls are constructed in a new home.
Planning and Preparing for a New Deck
Decks provide an attractive outdoor entertaining area that's perfect for grilling and dining. Decking is quicker to install than paving and can easily be adjusted to any size and situation.
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