How We Build
Going from a dream and an idea to a finished, quality-built deck can be a complicated and daunting process. We realize that although you may have an amazing idea, and know exactly what you want, that oftentimes this is where people get stuck, and don’t know how to make their dreams a reality. This is where we come in. We know what it takes to get your project built the right way, and we’ll help you so that you can have a finished product you can be proud of. We’ve compiled a list of the main processes and a description of each to help you understand what needs to be done. Some things are required, some are optional.
Once we receive your deposit and signed contract for a project, the first step is to apply for a building permit from your local permit office. We take care of the entire process, including checking the requirements that apply to your project, and submitting all the necessary paperwork. The time required to process the permit application varies by municipality. We will also schedule all required inspections during the project.
There are generally three types of footings you can use. The most cost effective one being the concrete surface pads but these are also the most likely to shift or move. The other two options are concrete piles and screw piles. These two are very similar in pricing. Our reccomendation would be to use screw piles as there are numerous advantages to going this route. Screw piles are less likely to heave when carrying a light load such as a deck or sunroom whereas a concrete pile will more easily heave, especially in our Manitoba climate. Another advantage to a screw pile is that the equipment we use to put them in is very light compared to concrete trucks or skidsteers so it doesn’t mess up your landscaping.
The ledger board, which is the board attached to the house, is typically attached using lag bolts as per local building code. If the ledger board needs to be attached to concrete, we use concrete wedge anchors. Our framing joists are spaced at 16 inches on center for straight flooring and 12 inches on center for all composite and PVC decking and diagonal flooring. Framing products vary in size depending on the height and size of your deck. All joists are attached to ledger board using joist hangers that are zinc coated and hot dipped galvanized to protect against rusting. All our fasteners are approved for ACQ and all other pressure treated lumber and outdoor use.
Our beams generally sit on 6x6 posts or if it’s a lower deck directly on the pile. The beam size varies depending on the height of the deck, span of the floor joists, etc. If you have a deck that is high off the ground, you may want to consider the option of wrapping the posts and beam with the same material used for your decking so that no green pressure treated wood is visible from the front of your deck. Ask one of our salesmen about this option.
The floor is one of the most noticeable parts of your deck. There are many options for the flooring. Boards can be run straight, diagonal, or in multiple directions. In most cases, we can design the floor layout so there will be no splices in the boards. The boards will also be professionally cut to fit against the house and around objects such as spouting, etc. Many times, our decks are designed with a “picture frame” border around the outer edge of the floor to provide a clean, finished look. For even more character, these border boards can be a different color than the main floor. Our salesmen will be happy to explain those options to you. Floor boards can be fastened using color matching surface screws (you will be able to see the screws), or using hidden fasteners. With the hidden fastener systems, you will not be able to see any screws in the surface of the floor.
There are a few types of railing system such as wood, aluminum and pvc and it is important to determine which one you’re going with before construction starts because most railing systems get built into the deck frame. The method of railing installation varies depending on which railing system is used. Almost all systems, including the vinyl railings, use 4 x 4 posts. These posts are pressure treated and are attached on the inside of the deck framing using GRK Structural screws.
One very popular option for decks and porches is lighting. There are many options, and our salesmen will be happy to discuss them with you. There are a few ways that lights can be wired. The most popular option is to use low voltage landscape wiring. This can be installed by our craftsmen. The lights are all wired to a transformer box that plugs into a regular electrical outlet. Please talk to one of our salesmen for more information.
Our steps stringers are cut out of pressure treated 2 x 12’s and custom made on the jobsite to accommodate your deck to ground level. They will be attached to pressure treated posts and concreted into the ground, using the same method as the deck footings. The risers (the back of the step) will be covered with the same material you choose for the fascia of your deck.
The exposed green pressure treated boards, which is the outer edge of the framing around your deck and the sides of the steps, is covered with a either brown pressure treated lumber, Composite or PVC depending on the material you use for your decking . You can choose to either have the fascia put on vertically or horizontal and choose a color to match the floor or contrast the floor. This finishes off your deck so that everything blends in beautifully.
Vertical Skirting to Ground (Optional)
Another option for finishing off the bottom of your deck is to use vertical boards for skirting the bottom of your deck to close it up. The same material that is used on the floor of your deck will be used to close up the side of deck. This is a great way to prevent any kind of animals from using the area under your deck to build their homes, and also a good way to create some extra storage space.