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Thread: New Deck

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    Riles_J's Avatar
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    New Deck

    I am in the planning stages for constructing a new deck that will connect to our inground pool. The deck will be large (about 1,000 sf) and I have recently been hearing of the many problems with pressure treated pine decking. It warps, splinters, checks, etc. I would love to construct this deck with a good hardwood that won't do the things that I mentioned, like Ipe, but I don't think I can swing the pricetag. Has anyone recently constructed a pressure treated pine deck? How is it holding up? I guess I shouldn't say recently because it may be more valuable if someones deck was 5+ years old to see how it is doing. Any feedback is appreciated.

    Here is a copy of my plan:



    Thanks,

    Riles
    16x32 IG vinyl, 19,000 gal, 1.0 hp pump, sand filter, 2 returns, 1 skimmer, diving board, slide

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Where do you live? That has a large impact on material selection.

    Also, often, the method used to build the deck is more important then the material (ensuring the crowns face the right way on all supports (especially cross supports), supports are properly spaced and anchored, and pillars are properly set either floating or below the frost line (depending on where you live). All wood warps, regardless of the type, you have to build to accomodate it. Also, use screws and bolts instead of nails.

    You won't find much cheaper then pine, maybe spruce, but they are very similar. Some of the synthetics might be comparable (plastic "wood like" decking is popping up all over), but I have no experience with it.
    Jim

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    The exposure (full sun most of the day?) might also come into play here.

    Can you still get pressure treated wood? I thought it was to be discontinued because some of the elements (like arsensic) leached into the soil over time and we know arsenic is not a good thing.

    We have a pressure treated deck (though not around the pool) that's about 20 years old. It's not in great shape, and I would agree that screws are better than nails. Ours is nailed, and there's lots of warping, cupping, etc. We looked into the plastic wood, but when it's time to replace, won't go that way because 1) our southern exposure will heat it up so that it will be unbearable to walk on, 2) some really look cheap to me, 3) there have been suits filed against some of the manufacturers - if grills are too close to the railings, say, the heat from the grill top can cause the railings to deform...and I'm not sure if these have been around long enough for anyone to say what they'll look like in 20, 30 years. If you go this way keep these things (especially the heat factor) in mind as well as how slippery it can get when wet. If this will be a high traffic area, consider also how easy it is to repair - these synthetics seem to have different fastening/construction methods.
    At least PT wood can be cleaned up and stained if you want - but of course that's more maintenance.

    A friend replaced a PT deck for another friend with Ipe, and the results are stunning. It is of course not the easiest wood to work with. Would mahogany, cedar, or redwood work?

    - edit - corrected typo
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    I went with Trex. Had to swallow hard at the price tag, but after dealing with splinters at our old house, it was a no-brainer.
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    Riles_J's Avatar
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    To answer a few of the above questions:

    I live in Tennessee. Hot and humid in the summers. Mild winters.

    As far as pressure treated pine goes. Yes, it is readily available everywhere. They did change the treating chemicals a few years back and now they are treated with a form of copper (ACQ). I have not heard much in favor of the new treatment from contractors as it doesn't seem as stable as the previous CCA material.

    I am seriously considering a hardwood like Ipe or Garapa, but the price tag is an issue. They are comparable to the plastic stuff though and I have heard too many bad stories about the plastic from mold, to it being hot, deformations, etc. and I am just not a fan of the look. Others seem to be very happy with it. However, if I am going to pay that price I will opt with some type of hardwood.

    Anyone else with any pressure treated pine decks?

    Thanks.
    16x32 IG vinyl, 19,000 gal, 1.0 hp pump, sand filter, 2 returns, 1 skimmer, diving board, slide

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    How expensive is cedar in your area?

    It's another softwood, but really resistant to rot and mildew, given your high humidity and heat.
    Jim

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    Riles,
    I would steer away from the treated pine. Our deck was built by the previous owner using treated pine and is only about 7 years old. I am constantly replacing nails that pop up with screws and a lot of the boards are warped and cracked. I would go with something that is going to last a long time, the extra up front cost will pay off in the long run. By the way, I live in Tennessee as well, just west of Clarksville.
    Patrick
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  8. Back To Top    #8
    I have a 12x18 PT pine deck that is just about a year old. It is not near a pool, since we don't have one yet! There are more nails popped than not! We have not sealed it yet, and plan to replace the popped nails with screws. The wood is also warping to some extent, though that is to be expected, I think, in all but the Ipe and other VERY hard woods.
    At my husband's work, they just built a very large 2 tier deck for outdoor dining, and use Ipe... it is GORGEOUS! I would definitely get this over the composite, if the cost was relatively equal.

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    Deck

    I am not familiar with PT Pine, in Canada the norm is PT Spruce, horrible stuff if you ask me. We used Western Red Cedar on ours, longevity isnt an issue, I plan on leaving this house in a Cedar Box

    I think some of you have looked at my deck, but allow me to post pic again. I used screws, over 4,000 of them, all countersunk 3/8" into wood. An old Carpenter friend of mine, warned me about rotting due to the screws/nails causing a wicking problem, and the water is constantly doing damge to the wood. So, he told me, find a good outdoor stainable glue, mix in it alot of shavings and such, making a thick paste. I filled all my holes with this, then fine sanded them to grade. He says this way they will stay covered, will take stain, and wont pop out like plugs do.

    At least half of them you think they are knots.

    I think if one takes his/her time, a deck can easily last 25 years. Want a fresh look, rent a floor rotary sander, and use a different waterbased transparent stain, and voila...you can change the look of your whole backyard.

    Here are a couple of pics.

    Rik
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Absolutely beautiful!
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    Thanks Dave...I had all winter to plan it out as the pool was only done in the late fall.

    We love how cool the deck feels when the sun is beating on it...cant beat natural wood for that....the new plastic woods are hot to touch.

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    Pooladdict, that is such a beautiful deck.
    Buggs

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  13. Back To Top    #13
    Riles_J's Avatar
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    Around here cedar is about the same price hardwoods such as Ipe and Garapa. The cedar down here is not nearly as good as it used to be as well, sounds like it is better up your way.

    I think I have decided to go the route of the hardwoods. They seem to offer the best value and look. I've just got to swallow hard and get out the checkbook. Seems like there is a saying something like "do it right and cry once, do it wrong and cry forever" or something to that effect.

    Pool addict, I surprised your deck stays so cool. I currently have a wood deck and it gets pretty hot. It has a light stain as well. Maybe this is all relative because it is not as hot as the concrete or brick that have near the pool.

    Riles
    16x32 IG vinyl, 19,000 gal, 1.0 hp pump, sand filter, 2 returns, 1 skimmer, diving board, slide

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    We have a PT pine deck that is 11 years old but it is not on our pool. No splitting, no warping, no problems. We treat it every 2 years - the flooring is stained with semi transparent hunter green and the rails are painted with a lifetime white paint (this all matches the house and shutters) We have rain, humidity, ice and snow. I think a lot is in the quality of the wood you choose to start with and the way you build it, then upkeep. Thats the problem with ANY wood product, there is upkeep.

    That is why we went with composite for our pool deck, which was more money by far but WAY nicer for upkeep - which is none. We do not notice any more problems with hot feet on the composite deck than we do on the wood deck both are in full sun and I know we used to have a lot of wet areas on the house deck when our old pool was next to the house so no more slippery either. If you shop around, you will find composite that looks amazingly like wood AND it can easily be shaped in ways wood cannot without special cuts and processes. Also, the composite is designed to make the screws almost disappear - I really like that look.
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    There is a product we used called shaddow track. Its stainless metal
    tracks that lets you fasten your deck boards from underneath the deck.
    No screw holes!
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  16. Back To Top    #16
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    Haybird

    I tried that underdecking stuff....with my pool being one foot off the ground I had little room to use the screws...tried 5 boards, took me 3 hours, gave up, and filled all the screw holes. Also, one has to pay special attention to how they install the deckster track and also where the screws are placed underneath. If done wrong, the boards will warp beyond belief. I believe for hidden decking Tiger Claws are the best thing.

    If I had the money, no question, Composite wood all the way, but at 4x the price of cedar up here in Canada, can you spell D I V O R C E?

    1 Cedar Board, 5/4 X 6 X 12 cost me $18 Tax in
    1 Composite 5/4 X 6 X 12...hold on to your hats....$61 tax in. I think I might add some in certain areas, one can really have a blast with that stuff.

    ALso, be aware of some composites, check their warrany, some only warranty for 10 years. I know I would cry if I spent that amount of money only to have the sun bleach it to the point of being brittle as ole heck.

    Rik

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    Ya you need lots of room or you would lose your mind.
    My deck is raised many feet. I found discountinued trex saddle colour,
    2005 fall for $1.80/lft.. It was discountinued because they now have the
    woodgrade look. There was still lots of the lite brown colour that fades to grey around
    at that price. If somebody is thinking trex might be worth asking for the old stuff and
    save big money
    16x32 inground vinyl 8' deep end
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  18. Back To Top    #18
    Riles_J's Avatar
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    The trouble I have with composites is that they are a fairly new product that is going through a lot of growing pains. The brand Trex had a major class action lawsuit filed against it because many people experienced mold spots. Now many brands are requiring special cleaning regimens and UV protectors be added on a regular basis in order to preserve the warranty. For a product that was touted as being "maintenance free" they have added in quite a bit maintenance to these products.

    I'm sure they have made improvements to these products and continue to do so. Many are very happy with their composite decks, but I have read many are uphappy. I guess that goes with about any product.

    Riles
    16x32 IG vinyl, 19,000 gal, 1.0 hp pump, sand filter, 2 returns, 1 skimmer, diving board, slide

  19. Back To Top    #19

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    I have cedar on my deck and really like it. I don't have a problem with splinters or warping, it is comfortable to walk on and is naturally resistant to rot.
    I had a deck at another house that was made out of treated pine and it warped a lot, popped nails and was not very comfortable to walk on because it “felt” very hard. If you get treated pine now, it is treated with copper as mentioned in a post above, which means that the old galvanized deck screws will not work anymore. The screw and the copper in the wood cause a chemical reaction and the screw deteriorates. You now need to use zinc coated screws which are a little bit more expensive.
    My dad has a Trex deck and it seems to be a little bit slipperier when wet then the cedar. Looks nice but I know he had a hard time with the price also.

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