As the cold and snow of winter becomes a distant memory, it’s normal for Calgary homeowners to turn their attention to their outdoor spaces. For some, there will be plans of a new flower bed or vegetable garden, while others will have ambitious plans to get their family to spend more time outside. An obvious strategy is to create more defined outdoor living spaces, and a deck is a quick and easy way to create a space that all the family will want to spend time on. However some of the larger, overheight or more complicated decks can require engineering and consider your local building codes. Hiring a professional deck contractor to help design and guide your deck project can be very helpful in these situations. This is especially the case if you are planning to add a Patio Cover, Pergola, Screen Room or Sunroom to your deck now or in the future with a DIY deck kit.
5 Steps To Building Your Dream Deck
Like with all good outdoor home improvement projects, the success of your deck project requires planning and organization before you even put a spade in the ground. These steps are needed to build the deck of your dreams:
- Create a full plan – a successful deck starts with a comprehensive plan. Start by looking at the different dimensions of our backyard area and home to see what fits your space and planned activities the best. You can then mark out where the deck will sit in real life and make any adjustments necessary to get it in exactly the right location.
- Dig the foundations – once your Calgary DIY deck kit has arrived, you’ll need to dig the grass and soil down by at least 30 cm and make sure the base is flat. In some cases, digging below the frost line is needed, see your local guidelines or consult a professional deck building company to confirm the depth in your area. For ground level installations, gravel is a great material to give a solid base that can be made flat easily. Once you’ve prepared the ground, install the footings, making sure that your joists won’t touch the ground.
- Lay the joists – the joists are the backbone of your deck, so it’s essential that you lay them at the right distance from each other (a standard of 16” on center is usually recommended) and that they are completely flat from beginning to end. A laser level is a great tool to have here especially if you’re installing a large DIY deck yourself.
- Prep and lay the decking – now comes the fun part. Your DIY deck kit will likely be faced with wood plank deck boards, it should be relatively easy to get everything screwed down in a short period of time. Remember to leave a space between boards to not trap water and decrease the life of the wood. Take the time to lay everything out ahead of time to get the right pattern and to make sure you have enough decking to cover your project.
- Pick the right stain – once everything’s in place, you need to think about long term protection for your dream deck. You need to think about finding the balance between the right colour to match your house and other outdoor structures, and enough weatherproofing protection to withstand the variable Calgary seasons. Be sure to leave your deck to cure once you’ve applied the stain so that you can enjoy your new dream deck to its fullest.