how to extreme

Upgrade your Deck

Construction How-To, Decks, Decks, Outdoor Living, Projects August 3, 2016 Sonia


Whenever you have room beneath the deck, we recommend using a swiveling shop stool for a comfortable working position.

Whenever you have room beneath the deck, we recommend using a swiveling shop stool for a comfortable working position.

During installation, we at first found it tricky to guide the screws into the Shadoe Track holes when fastening the decking. To make this easier, we arrived on the following tool setup: First, an impact driver will afford better control than a standard drill/driver. Use a long extension for your bit-holder for easier reach into the corner beneath the deck boards. And finally, use a bit holder with a sliding collar than can hold the screw straight while you insert it into the screw hole. After we adopted this procedure, our speed of installation increased dramatically.

We installed blocking between the cantilevered joists ends to prevent them from twisting over time.

We installed blocking between the cantilevered joists ends to prevent them from twisting over time.

For boards ends that were spliced over the joists but not fastened to the tracks we installed under-deck blocking and cinched down the boards with screws from below.

For boards ends that were spliced over the joists but not fastened to the tracks we installed under-deck blocking and cinched down the boards with screws from below.

Once the project was completed, we got exactly what we wanted: a smooth, uniform, fastener-free deck surface that will stand the test of time. Mission accomplished. Time to crack a cold one.

Side Note One

redeck sidebar1Flash the Framing

When this deck was originally constructed the tops of the joists were lined with deck flashing—the black strips shown on the tops of the beams and the joists. This is a commonly overlooked step, but a great way to prevent accumulation of water that can lead to rot and overall weakening of the construction. Deck Flash Barrier from Cofair Products comes in rolls, either 2 or 4 inches wide, which you roll out just like duct tape over the tops of the joists. The product is a self-adhesive asphalt mastic that creates a waterproof membrane and self-seals around screws and nails, blocking a primary pathway for water infiltration into deck joists. Visit www.cofair.com.

Side Note Two

SuperDeck Transparent Wood Stain

SuperdeckSS-OIL_09-14-8SuperDeck Transparent Wood Stain was developed more than 20 years ago to meet the demands of the extreme climates found in California. From the highest peaks of the Sierra Nevada mountains to the low and damp northern coastlines to the dry heat of the valleys and deserts, Superdeck is a consumer and contractor favorite due to its ease of use and long-lasting results. The oil-based formula penetrates deep into wood fibers for years of enjoyment and protection against the elements in any climate. Superdeck is formulated to resist growth of mildew and algae on the coating’s surface. The three-oil formula repels water, just like water off a duck’s back. The easy-to-apply, one-coat coverage lubricates wood fibers to reduce cracking and checking, and the product is VOC-compliant with formulas as low as 100 VOC. The transparent finish highlights the natural wood grain, and iron-oxide pigments provide maximum UV protection. Visit www.superdeck.com.

Side Note Three

redeck sidebar2Check the Joists

Our failure here was not determining the joist in the middle sagged until we had already fastened the metal track to it. We should have first have run a string-line across the tops of the all joists to make sure they were all level in the same plane. We found this one a little late. The substantial sag required us to remove the joist and completely replace it before installing the new deck boards.