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How To Build A Patio Deck

How To Build A Deck Step By Step With Pictures

How to Make Concrete Patio Pavers and a Solid Cedar Deck

Ive wondered how to build a deck for years! So I set about learning how to build a deck step by step and took pictures during the process.

To build a deck, start by:

1. Placing concrete deck blocks about every 3-5. They dont need to be level with each other but should be level with the ground, so shovel the ground as needed. 2. Place 4×4 posts in each concrete block going up3. Run 2×6 between the 4×4 posts & cut off any excess post above the level board4. Run wood braces between the 2×6 boards5. Attach6. Stain

Make no mistake, my friend Dave, who had done it before, was the brains of the operation. But in helping him, while he is certainly VERY skilled, I came away realizing just how easy it would be for most folks to build a deck too.

So in this post, Im going to detail everything involved in how to build a deck step by step with pictures.

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Yes, you can get fancier.

You could add fancy railings. And you could have multiple levels, etc. Im not a master carpenter. But I can tell you that a somewhat basic deck has transformed our backyard into someplace we love to hang out now. Its also a great way to increase your homes value.

That was not the case before I decided to build a deck.

You can get everything you need quickly and easily by ordering on Amazon or pre-ordering with Lowes or Home Depot and having it ready for pickup.

Cost To Build A Patio

Homeowners spend an average of $5,400 on a 12-foot by 18-foot patio with pavers laid in an intricate design, according to Graham. This includes a professional labor cost of approximately $2,000.

The cost to build a patio yourself will depend on the material you choose, which can go from $5 to $10 per square foot for gravel up to $18 to $24 for bluestone, Graham says, adding that you might need to budget extra for having materials delivered or renting the necessary tools.

Other add-ons like building a pergola or including an awning can add many thousands of dollars to your project costs, depending on the material. When it comes to maintenance, though, you might realize some savings.

Patios are generally more durable and require less maintenance than a deck, Graham says. An annual hose wash is normally enough, and regular checks for cracks with extreme cracks, the whole patio would need to be removed and replaced.

Waterproof The Bottom Of Your Deck Planks

Since this wood is not typical decking-wood, you need this extra step to keep the wood from rotting and decomposing any sooner.

Note that Douglas Fir may not be ideal for other climates, but dry climates should be just fine if you will waterproof the bottom of the wood first. You dont need to waterproof the top, because we are going to stain/seal that side! I used Thompsons Water Seal and a paint roller just make sure to follow the instructions on the container!

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Plan The Foundation And Leveling

You can create a simple foundation by placing concrete blocks at the decks corners. You can also place your structure on top of gravel for better drainage. Next, youll put stakes in the ground and string the perimeter using the stakes and hang a line level. Once you know your deck outline is level, youre ready to move to the next step.

Order The Base Materials And Stone

Patio Deck Railing Design: How to Build a Deck Step by Step

It’s what’s underneath that counts. Stone and brick are what you see, but the landscape fabric, gravel and sand are what hold them together and make your patio last.

Landscape fabric stabilizes the soil underneath the gravel base by keeping them apart while allowing water to drain through. We used 12-1/2 ft. wide, heavy, woven stabilization fabric purchased from our stone supplier. If this isn’t available, use the widest landscape fabric you can find.

Class V limestone forms the foundation of our patio, but there may be different materials available in your region. Any granular fill will work as long as the size of the granules ranges from 3/4 in. down to a powder and they’re angular, not smooth and round. These qualities allow the fill to be tightly packed for a firm base that allows water to drain through. A mixture of recycled concrete and asphalt is widely available and is a good substitute for Class V.

Depending on your soil, you’ll need a4- to 10-in. thick layer of gravel. Sandy soils require less gravel than soils with organic matter or clay. Gravel is sold by the ton or cubic yard. One cubic yard covers about 50 sq. ft. at a 6-in. depth by the time it’s compacted and weighs 1-1/2 tons. We used 12 tons of gravel.

Coarse washed sand is spread over the gravel in a 1-in. layer to form a setting bed for the stone and brick, and later to fill the cracks between the bricks and stone. We used 5 tons of sand.

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Dig Footings And Install Piers Or Posts

Use mason’s strings to determine footings along the decks outside corners. This should follow your layout plan. These should be spaced at eight foot intervals along the front rim joist.

A footing hole should be dug below the frost line and be large enough to hold the footing form. Drop the pier form into the footing hole and secure it with dirt around the edges. Fill the piers with concrete and allow them to cure for a week. You can install post hardware into the concrete before it dries, or attach a post base once the pier cures.

Building A Simple Deck

The deck shown here features a pressure-treated floor frame thats supported by a ledger board and concrete piers, and topped with 5/4-inch decking. And because the deck is only a one step high, no railing was required. Now just follow Toms tips and build your own backyard oasis. Its a great way to make your neighbors jealous.

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How Long Do Deck Joists Last

As I mentioned above in talking about pressure treated lumber, the average deck will last between 15-20 years, especially when using pressure-treated lumber that has been waterproofed with a sealer or stain.

One trick to make your deck joists last longer is to coat them with a moisture-resistant stain or sealer before you add the deck boards. The color doesnt really matter since you wont see much of the framing, but it will help make your joists last considerably longer.

The 2 things that damage wood decks the most are sun and moisture that isnt able to evaporate quickly. So make sure the underside of your deck gets good ventilation, and youre likely to see your deck, and the deck joists, last up to 20 years.

Create Concrete Forms To Level The Deck

Creating a wood deck patio over concrete

If the yard slopes slightly away from the house, the lower holes need extra height to reach the level string. To remedy this, cut a cardboard caisson tube to length and rest the segments on the lower holes. These now serve as concrete forms.

Form the Concrete

If the yard slopes slightly away from the house, the lower holes need extra height to reach the level string. To remedy this, cut a cardboard caisson tube to length and rest the segments on the lower holes. These now serve as concrete forms.

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How To Build A Backyard Deck Diy

Hi Everyone – Ryan here! What I enjoy most about DIY projects like this: They let you take a space you like and turn it into a space that you love. It’s either about making a space more pleasant to be in or taking a non-functional…

Hi Everyone Ryan here!

What I enjoy most about DIY projects like this: They let you take a space you like and turn it into a space that you love. Its either about making a space more pleasant to be in or taking a non-functional space and making it functional. Any time I can check both of those boxes, thats what makes me the most happy!

So let me introduce you to a project that has made such a difference in how we use outdoor space: our backyard deck.

Im writing this post not because there arent a million other great tutorials out there for building a deck, but because I want to show how you can build great deck for roughly $350 and highlight things that a lot of tutorials I read did not cover well. So in case you are contemplating this project for your own home, heres everything you need to know, step by step, about our DIY wood deck.

How The Layers Go Together

When youve found a suitable spot, make a rough sketch showing trees, shrubs and gardens, then take measurements. Transfer these measurements to graph paper, letting each square equal 1 ft. Lay tracing paper over your plan and sketch in the stone border and bricks. Experiment with different designs, and when you come up with a plan you like, use it to calculate the quantities of materials and help you place the patio stones. Remember that this is a casual, free-form patio. Have fun and let the plan evolve as you work.

Note: You can download Figure A and enlarge it from the additional information below.

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Is It Cheaper To Build A Deck Or Patio

Patios consist of more affordable materials like stamped concrete or stone as opposed to wood or bricks which are common for decks. Patios also require less labor and maintenance, which can help keep the costs down.

Furthermore, Does patio add value to home? A dining area, dry laid patio, a patch of gravel, a covered patio or an above-grade deck: According to, a landscaped patio raises the value of your home by 12.4 percent. Todays best-selling improvement is a backyard terrace that abuts the family room.

Secondly, How much does a 20×20 paver patio cost?

How Much Does a 20×20 Paver Patio Cost? According to data from HomeGuide, a 20-foot by 20-foot paver patio runs from $1,900 to $6,800, including labor and materials such as clay brick, natural stone or concrete pavers. Obviously, the larger the patio, the more materials required and the greater the labor costs.

How much is a 24×24 concrete pad?

A typical 24×24 garage slab costs between $3,057 and $5,944 with prices ranging from $5.31 to $8.31 per square foot for a 4 reinforced slab of concrete, and $6.83 to $10.32 per square foot for a 6 slab of reinforced concrete.

Reduce Impact On Landscaping

Decor of Deck Over Concrete Patio Outdoor Concrete Patios ...

If you invest time in the spring to beautify your lawn, then the best time of year to build a deck is likely the end of the season. Even if your design doesnt incorporate landscaping, just about any new building project can come with its own messes and hazards. Waiting for a time when the beauty of your yard isnt a high priority can make a lot of sense.

You might also want to incorporate landscaping into your deck or patio design. For instance, planting beds, flower pots, or similar elements can enhance the look and feel of your deck. With that in mind, starting your project during the fall or winter means youll be ready for the coming season. Starting during summer may be too late for planting.

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Adding A Patio Under Your Deck: Tips And Ideas For Homeowners In Lancaster And Reading Pa

Posted On: By: Jarod Hynson, President

A patio under a deck can be a great way to get even more use out of your backyard. When designed and built well, youll have the deck for upper level entertaining and that space can flow seamlessly into your lower level entertainment zone.

Of course, you might not be sure how to transform the area and make it look its best. Plus you might have a lot of questions such as:

  • Can it be used when its raining?

  • What ideas are there for creating a patio under my deck?

  • Who should I hire for the work?

Well answer all of these and more so that you can ensure that your new space gets maximum use.

How To Build A Raised Patio

In terms of planning a project, a raised patio would be built when the slope of the backyard descends from the house at an aggressive enough rate to which a patio could not be built on grade. If you cannot picture yourself sitting a table and some chairs on the grass or grade to which your backyard is because your drinks would be sliding off of the table or you would be rolling backwards in your chairs, you likely require a raised patio.

Raised patio construction allows you to create a level area where you can comfortably set up a space for you to enjoy without those worries of toppling over. It is a design alternative to utilizing the most of the space you have been provided with on your property for entertaining.

A raised patio uses retaining wall systems to build up the area to a suitable height with slabs and pavers to make up the interior of the patio essentially creating a patio on top of a retaining wall border. When built according to the specifications outlined below, you can have a patio that will last you several years and parties.

Building a raised patio includes five steps: planning, excavation, base preparation, retaining wall installation, and patio installation. The base preparation step is repeated for both the retaining wall and patio installation as a two part process.

To begin with, here is the cross section of one end to a raised patio for context:

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What Type Of Material Will You Use

A ground level deck is meant to be low, which means youll want to consider the type of wood or composite youll use for framing. If the bottom of your deck frame is less than 6″ above the ground or partially buried, you should use pressure-treated wood that is rated for ground contact. This type of wood has a higher level of preservative that guards the wood against rot and decay.

Do you want a step or two to your platform deck? If so, consider how youll attach the steps because if you attach them with stringers, you dont want to bury metal in the ground since it can corrode.

How To Build A Deck

Build a patio deck with a mitered frame using MultyDeck!

My sister and I are currently renovating a cottage in Tennessee and wanted to add value to our flip house by building a wood deck. In our experience, buyers love the natural beauty and elegance of real wood, so the material choice was easy locally sourced pressure-treated yellow pine.

The goal was to make the house look bigger to increase curb appeal and add some pizzaz to the front of this tired old house. We also wanted to add an outdoor entertaining space and take advantage of the beautiful country setting.

When it came to designing the deck there were a few items we had to work around. First, we wanted to be careful of the masonry and foundation on our 80-year-old cottage and second we had to build the deck across a sloped yard to tie into the height of the existing porch. Heres how we did it:

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Universal Deck Building Tips

No matter what your plans look like, here are a few things that are unchanging.

  • The deck boards should always be bark side up meaning the rings should be turned down.

Theres a debate about this, but it seems pretty logical to me. With the rings turned up, you create a cupping feature which just adds to water damage and warping. So the left board is correct.

  • Spacing between boards is really up to you

I heard both ways. You need to space the deck boards and you shouldnt space the deck boards .

With the deck #1, we used a few nails to space the boards before screwing them down. It left a nice little space which is perfect for dirt and tree debris. But they spread even further over the last 6 months. It looks like a little too much n some places, but its better than dirt!

If I had to do it again, I wouldve spaced the second deck just like the first.

  • Ground contact Pressure Treated Lumber is the only way to go for all your framing, posts, joists, etc.

You could use whatever you like for the deck boards, but we went pressure treated with that too. There are just too many pests and risk of wood rot here in Florida.

There I am! All guts and glory with deck #1 beneath me! My cousin gifted me a 4 level for Christmas and I had never received a gift so perfect hahaha.

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Depending upon your area and local building codes, some decks may only require ground-level footings. In most instances, decks require support from concrete piers that are set into the ground. The terms piers and footings are often used interchangeably though they are technically not the same thing. Piers transfer the decks weight into the soil. Footings spread the weight out over a larger area. Depending upon building code requirements and soil conditions in your area, footings may also be required beneath the piers to spread the decks weight out. These specifications will be detailed in your deck drawings and guided by local building codes. Your deck drawings will indicate the size, number and location of deck piers or deck footings.

With the posts or beams in place, its time to build the deck frame. Because the deck is free-standing, it does not require a ledger board, which gets attached to the house. Instead, your deck will consist of rim joists that make up the decks perimeter, to be filled in with joists that will support the decking.

Tip: Most framing lumber has a slight bow in it along its edge. This is called a crown. Install the rim joists and all framing materials so that the crown is up.

With the decks rim joist complete, its time to install the joists.

Tip: For the best appearance, stagger the seams between adjacent rows of decking. Seams should look random so keep them two or more joists away from one another.

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