Over time, wooden decks will go through plenty of wear and tear. Deck boards are exposed to extreme weather conditions and high temperatures that cause them to expand and contract.
You may experience shaking and bouncing off the boards.
As this cycle continues, it could lead to possible problems regarding stability, structure, and appearance of the deck. We have researched several remedies to deck issues and safety measures to avoid danger.
When your deck shakes when walked on, probably because the floor beams and supports are loosened, it could also be because of the damaged materials that support the deck's structure. That said, you should resolve any deck issues as soon as possible.
It would be alarming when your deck starts to shake or deck boards bounce. It could lead to danger, especially when you have kids or seniors in the household. As you keep reading, we will guide you in finding the best solution to keep your deck safe and sound.
Common Deck Problems And Fixes
A safe and well-kept deck increases the value of your home. Since your deck board is exposed to high temperature and extreme weather, deck problems start to arise. Read on.
In general, top-grade nails work fine over time. However, nails can only be held by friction. The nails will loosen, and they won't be attached again without using any force.
Loosened nails are one of the common problems you will experience with decks. Fastening the nails on the deck boards is simple and easy.
Those deck boards will be attached in no time with your nail gun. Here's how:
- Locate the nails that might be of danger to you.
- Replace the nails. Fasten the nails using a hammer, but this is only provisional. Since the nails are out, the hole becomes larger than the diameter of the nails.
- You want to make sure that nothing won't pop these nails again. A deck screw will be safe to place closer to the nails. This will prevent the nails from popping again.
Moisture Related Damage
Deck problems are often found right precisely where the house is attached. The water will flow easily, so it is best to use preventive measures to address this problem.
You will be required to do flashing when the deck is at risk for water damage or when the deck is damaged by extreme moisture and water.
This will block the water and prevent moisture from entering the house's openings.
Deck flashing is available in Z and L shapes. They are made of copper, vinyl, and stainless. Using aluminum or galvanized flashing is not advisable because they will quickly get rust.
Of all those types of flashing, vinyl is the cheapest. However, it works best during extreme weather conditions and rises in temperature.
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Gaps In Your Deck
Installing deck boards is a complex process. You have to make sure that they are correctly done. It means that proper spacing, the right size, shape, and proper storing should be considered.
This is just only the beginning. Remember that wood enlarges and bonds depending on the moisture and humidity level. As a result, you need to ensure appropriate spacing between deck boards.
Why Is Proper Deck Spacing Important?
By nature, wood changes its appearance and structure as the season varies. That is why deck boards should be held and bonded together.
If you do not bear this in mind, it will cause them to fasten off the deck, pushing the materials to get off in place.
- Deck spacing is necessary to minimize contraction and expulsion of the boards throughout the season.
- Deck spacing is necessary, so your structure won't trap moisture inside, leading to molds and rot.
- Deck spacing is necessary for easy cleaning and disinfecting. While debris may not be substantial, it does not matter when your deck is aesthetically designed.
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Structural problems commonly occur not just on wood deck boards. This problem is sometimes due to improper installation, wood aging, and an unmaintained house.
If you feel that the balcony is unstable and uncomfortable when walking on it, this is a sign that the deck boards are weak and need repair or replacement.
- Inspect if all the connections and bonds are securely attached.
- If some materials are missing, repair them immediately. You may call your contractor if you do not know how to fix it.
Safety Precautions When A Deck Is At Risk
Decks are considered one of the most comfortable sections in the house. Most people enjoy spending their free time on the deck with friends and family over meals or snacks.
However, how would you know whether the deck is still safe? We cannot void danger and injuries when the deck starts to collapse.
We do not want this to happen. Here are some precautions we recommend following:
Your deck should be inspected as a whole.
Check the overall structure and areas to ensure that all materials, especially the deck boards, are still attached, such as deck floorboards, stairs, railings, nails, underneath the woods, and the posts.
Make sure there are no holes in the wood to prevent mold and moisture. Observe all the areas that could come in contact with sun and rain.
If there are electric outlets, ensure you childproof them if you have kids in the house. If electrical cords are revealing, do not be tripped by any individual to prevent falls.
Build A Sturdy Foundation
Knowing what will cause the deck to shrink is crucial so you can avoid it accordingly. Expect heavy snow in cold regions.
So, if you are leaving in a cold location, your base should be 4 feet up to 5 feet below the ground. This will ensure that the post won't freeze and elevate.
Get a good base. This is essential for any deck project.
You can DIY a deck with a strong foundation. It's either you can dig a hole or rent a digger. Find out the required depth for a good base.
Clay soil may cause you a headache as it will increase the deck wood and decrease in size depending on its moisture content.
So, it is better to have a proper elevation of the deck to raise a durable foundation.
A bedrock would determine if you got a good base. It means that your deck will not go anywhere. Bedrock is not a big rock, so don't be deceived.
Check The Quality Of Your Deck's Railings And Stairs
Available and accessible deck railings and stairs need a lot of significant features when it comes to safety.
First, you may want to consider the overall outline of the post, which makes the railings and stairs secure and safe. Allow your contractor to follow the building requirements regarding spacing and the deck's installation.
Make sure to pick quality and durable materials so they may last longer.
Create A Fire Barrier
Woods are fire's g od catch to create considerable destruction. So, never place a fire near a composite or wooden deck.
Things To Remember
- To avoid possible damage due to fire, make use of fire pit mats. They can stand the extreme heat a pit can reach.
- For DIYers, make a pile of bricks in your fire pit area. Be careful in pilling the bricks to avoid scratches.
- Before you start a fire pit, check the entire area. It should be clean and free from any material which may increase the fire. Keep off dried leaves, papers, lighters, and other flammable objects as far as possible.
- Remember that fire may start in a second. Ensure you have a fire extinguisher to shut off the fire as early as possible.
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Having a deck is a great addition to your house wh re you can relax and make joyful memories. Make sure you don't have to face different deck problems to avoid injuries. So, ensure you follow all those preventive measures to be safe and secure.
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