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spiragui 02-04-2013 11:50 AM

Dubious deck structure?
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I'm currently shopping around for estimates on getting my deck surface replaced with something waterproof, and while poking around below the deck noticed that where the previous deck had been enlarged, they had attached a new support beam with a joist hanger to the end of the existing beam. Hopefully the pic helps explain that a little better (I keep forgetting to take a photo...).

The beams are 6x12 PT lumber, the post 6x6 and the deck surface joists 2x10. Is this built to code? Maybe six or so nails (hammered into end grain) holding up the adjoining structure?

hand drive 02-04-2013 11:57 AM

chances are if they tied into the existing structure the existing structure was built to hold up its own weight and not an added section built onto the structure. the existing structure also could have been over built up front allowing for expansion later...

TarheelTerp 02-04-2013 02:26 PM

If it were my house...
I'd want to see sort of bracketing between that post and the new joists.

spiragui 02-04-2013 02:29 PM


Originally Posted by TarheelTerp (Post 1109455)
If it were my house...
I'd want to see sort of bracketing between that post and the new joists.

It's there, just forgot to draw it! There is a 'U' bracket joining the top of the post to the existing beam.


GBrackins 02-04-2013 03:14 PM

The new structure beam is improperly tied into the existing beam (in my humble opinion). Any lateral movement could cause the joist/beam hanger to pull away from the existing beam. This is due to the fact the fasteners are installed in withdrawl (even if this is a double shear connector) and into end grain of the existing beam. I would want to see at minimum a metal connector (could be on backside of beam) or similar fastener that would connect the two beams together and resist lateral movement.

For Guidelines on Deck Construction I recommend following the American Wood Council's "Prescriptive Residential Wood Deck Construction Guide." This is based upon the 2009 International Residential Code. Your code requirements may vary.

Hope this helps! Good luck! :thumbsup:

TarheelTerp 02-04-2013 03:14 PM


Originally Posted by spiragui (Post 1109456)
There is a 'U' bracket joining the top of the post to the existing beam.

(looked for a photo to show it... no joy)
An angled bracket BELOW the NEW joists transferring that weight back to the posts.

GBrackins 02-04-2013 03:16 PM

as far as waterproof I have to ask why? are you making enclosed living space under the deck or are you just looking for something like a screened patio under the deck?

and what has 6 or so nails driven into the end grain? where the beam connects to the house?

spiragui 02-04-2013 03:20 PM

Dubious deck structure
Yes, there is a stamped concrete patio under the deck that we would like to be able to use regardless of the weather. Once waterproofed we can then install pot-lights etc under the deck.


GBrackins 02-04-2013 03:37 PM

I would recommend something like this

There are many different manufacturers of under decking systems.

Building a membrane roof (to make deck waterproof) is not the best way in my opinion. Your decking is above the membrane roof and makes maintenance more difficult. Just my opinion.

Duckweather 02-04-2013 03:52 PM

If everything else is proper construction, is there room on the footing to replace the 6 x 6 with a 6 x 8 centered on the joint with metal connectors to tie them together?

spiragui 02-04-2013 04:28 PM

Thanks for everyone's answers and advice!

We are looking at replacing the entire deck surface with a walkable membrane, i.e. one of the vinyl roll membranes, or a liquid-applied type.

I did consider one of the under-deck systems, but due to the amount of tree debris I get, plus the complex shape of the deck, I decided against them.

GBrackins 02-04-2013 04:46 PM

have you checked out

spiragui 02-06-2013 08:54 AM


Exactly the stuff I am currently looking at (plus it's equivalents).


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