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Old 07-10-2013, 11:08 AM   #1
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Repair or replace this deck?


I appears they threw on new balusters just to sell it and they're not really done that well since the railings shake. All the deck boards need replacing and some come right up when you walk on them. There is a slight slant towards the house shown in green, is this okay? The Ledger is only held on with screws and it appears they moved the stairs and added on a section of the deck and there are no footings on that section just two 4x4's sitting in the ground which you can't really see from this angle.

I was thinking the cheapest option would be to lag the ledger and replace all the deck boards which should be under $1k. The other option being rip it down and build a new one which would be 5x more.

Thoughts?
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Old 07-10-2013, 11:29 AM   #2
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Repair or replace this deck?


The movement in the railing has little to nothing to do with the balusters. Your problem starts with the 4x4 posts extending up from the rim joist. They are either surface mounted to the decking or attached to the side of the rim joist. If its the latter, the rim joist is likely flexing when the railing is torqued.

The ledger should be properly lagged to the rim joist of the house. Screws are too brittle for attaching a ledger. Also, the inward slope is potentially problematic. It may not be an issue, but it IS diverting water towards your rim joist. Given what I see in the picture, I doubt the ledger is appropriately flashed-add in the potential for water infiltration and you have a problem on your hands.

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Old 07-10-2013, 11:41 AM   #3
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Repair or replace this deck?


If the deck boards are bad I would guess that the rest of the boards are not in very good shape either. They are probably all the same age.
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:32 PM   #4
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Repair or replace this deck?


4 X 4's are not even legal for a two story deck.
How far below the door open is the deck boards.
It needed to be a bare minimum of 4" or water will find it's way in and take out the subflooring and more.
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:49 PM   #5
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4 X 4's are not even legal for a two story deck.
Yeah, what he said!

From your description and what I can see in the picture, this deck looks like a house of cards that is doomed to fail. Considering the span of the joists between the ledger and the undersized 4x4s, I'm surprised you didn't mention that the deck felt like a bouncy house when you walked on it.

If it has all the problems you've mentioned, I would tear it out and start new. To fix it properly, you are looking at just as much money as a brand new deck.
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:50 PM   #6
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Repair or replace this deck?


So - I should replace it all? Sounds like nothing is worth keeping or that it's probably done incorrectly?
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:50 PM   #7
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So - I should replace it all? Sounds like nothing is worth keeping or that it's probably done incorrectly?

If it were mine, I would take it down.
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:51 PM   #8
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I'm pretty handy and I own all the tools needed, is this a project I could take on or would it be better to hire a contractor? What would the price difference probably be? With a good set of instructions it doesn't seem like a very hard project.
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:55 PM   #9
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... it doesn't seem like a very hard project.
It may not seem difficult, but there is a reason contractors can command a premium when doing this kind of work. There is a big safety factor involved in a two story deck. That being said, I can't recommend that a homeowner take an a project like this.
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Old 07-10-2013, 04:02 PM   #10
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A few other thing's I notice that would not fly in my area.
No grip able hand rails.
No footings under the post.
Post can not just be attached to the sides of a rim joist.
Bet there's no blocking where the rail post are.
If those are just 2 X 6 floor joist there undersized.
Was joist hangers used?
Not sure why they came up with the odd ball spacing for those rails.
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Old 07-10-2013, 04:07 PM   #11
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My dog has actually slipped and injured himself twice trying to run up the stairs after it rains...they are super slick. I'm leaning towards a teardown, there seems to be too many issues with it to try and salvage it.
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Old 07-10-2013, 06:55 PM   #12
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tear that eyesore down and rebuild.

as for 4x4's the only time their allowed is if the deck is less than 2' off the ground and that doesnt always fly with inspectors.. for handrail posts though their fine.
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Old 07-10-2013, 08:06 PM   #13
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there is a reason contractors can command a premium when doing this kind of work.


I can't recommend that a homeowner take an a project like this.
yeah. because some people could kill themselves with a rusty spoon. and they know it. so they hire it out.



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Old 07-11-2013, 07:16 AM   #14
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take it down and build a shed with the wood. the fact that it has been ""updated"" and still not a good deck shows that any other attempts to band aid that deck will not lead to favorable results most likely.
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:26 PM   #15
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Repair or replace this deck?


You might be able to re-use some of the materials in the deck. Or as some said re-purpose the material to something else.

What you really need to start is a plan/design for the proper deck that is to code and then get a permit. I am quite sure that that POS was never permitted, and if it was, the inspector should be fired for gross incompetence and the "contractor" drawn and quartered.

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