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Hi Everyone,

The inspection report for a home that I just bought in Atlanta, GA listed some issues with the rear deck. I'm hoping to start working on fixing those issues over the next couple of weeks. I've been reviewing some things online and going through some very helpful responses on this forum to similar questions. I was hoping to get some advice on my proposed fixes.

The deck is just under 4' off the ground. It's 14' by 16', and it's connected to the side of the house.

The inspector commented primarily on two issues:

- Sagging in middle because the 2 x 8 floor joist have been over spanned. According to the Southern Pine Span Tables for #2 treated yellow pine used for wet-service floor joists (Decks), a 2 x 8 deck floor joist can only be spanned 12' 5" max on 16" centers. These floor joist span 13' 8" on 16" centers. The inspection report noted that the sag is visible - off by a half bubble in four feet.

- The guardrail post have been notched and nailed to the deck frame.

Regarding the first issue (sagging in middle of deck), it sounds like one option is to install a new beam at the mid-span which goes perpendicular to the joists. Under the GA code, I'd need to put down 2 new footings, 6 new 6x6 posts, and a beam of 3 2x10's nailed together.

As an alternative, would it be possible to repair the problem by adding new joists between the existing joists on the deck. It doesn't seem like it would be very difficult to do that, and that would potentially deal with the issues from the overspanned joists. My concern is that the deck is currently constructed on 4x4 posts -- and I'm a little bit worried that adding additional weight without additional posts is a recipe for an accident to happen.

On the second issue, I was planning on installing the Simpson post connector DTT2Z. The rail posts don't seem particularly sturdy, and a properly installed Simpson post connector seemed like it would do the trick.
I'd love to hear anyone's thoughts about whether either of these options will work. I've included photographs of the deck in case that helps.




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37,499 Posts
The center beam would be the best way to address the sag.
Through bolting the post with two 1/2" carrage bolts would firm up the notched post.
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20,385 Posts
Center beam. YES !

When you disassemble this to place a center beam, make sure that you place all the joists back with the "CROWN-UP"

You will be surprised how many builders forget this vital piece of deck building.
With the crown up there will never be a sagging middle due to the joists bowing down from finishing curing .

Bolting the notches also secures them well.

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