Easy2 Technologies - Deck 8: Installing Deck Boards Product Demo

Deck 8: Installing Deck Boards Instructions

  • Deck 8: Installing the Deck Boards

    Now that you have put the deck frame and joists in place, you can install the decking of your deck. You have a variety of materials to choose from - pressure-treated wood, redwood, cedar and even artificial wood. Your choice will be based on your preference for aesthetics versus ease of maintenance. Make sure that butt joints in the decking do not occur in the same joists for two consecutive rows. Make sure that they are staggered for both aesthetic and structural reasons.

  • Overview

    The basic steps to installing your deck boards are to first, decide on the type of fasteners you will use. Then install your first board. Lay subsequent boards so that you will end with a full length board at the edge. And finally, cut you board ends to length.

  • Choose Fasteners

    When installing the decking boards, you can use screws or galvanized nails. For both nails and screws, pre-drill the ends of the boards to avoid splitting. Use 2 screws or nails where a decking board and joist intersect

  • Choose Boards

    Choose the straightest board in the stack to be the first piece of decking as it will go right up against the house. Cut it to length and slide it up against the house. Nail it or screw it in place 1/8” away from the siding. Note that is a good idea to install decking boards with the bark side up. Boards can cup away from the bark side which will enable the water to run off the boards.

  • Lay Subsequent Rows

    Lay each subsequent row of decking in place and fasten it to the joists, maintaining a consistent 1/8" gap in between rows. For boards around the edges of the deck, allow the boards to fly a few inches. You will cut them all at once when they are all installed. You may have to butt two boards together to run the entire length of your deck. Butt the boards over a joists, be sure that you don’t butt the same joists for two consecutive rows.

  • Work Warped Boards into Position

    If a board is warped, screw it in place at one end, 1/8" away from the previous row. Move to the next joist. If the gap is less than 1/8", use a pry bar in between the new board and the last row to spread the boards apart. If the gap is greater than 1/8", have a helper grab the free end of the board and push it into the correct position. Screw the board in place.

  • Measure Every Few Rows

    Every few rows, measure the distance remaining on both edges of the deck. Make sure the distance is the same. If one distance is longer, you can get the rows of decking parallel to the end of the deck by spreading the gap at one end over the next couple rows.

  • Finish with a Full-width Board

    When you are about 4 to 6 feet from the end of the deck, check the remaining distances from the edge. Divide this distance by the width of the decking boards plus 1/8". You should end the decking with a full width board if possible. Over the last 10 or so rows, you can slightly spread or shrink the 1/8" for a perfect fit.

  • Cut the Ends to Length

    Once you put in all the deck boards, you can cut off the ends that extended over the edge of the deck. Snap a chalk line and use a circular saw to cut all the boards in one step. Where the circular saw can't reach, use a hand saw.


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