(Topic ID: 248471)

Looking for deck building advice

By kcZ

8 months ago

Topic Stats

  • 11 posts
  • 6 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 8 months ago by kcZ
  • No one calls this topic a favorite


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#1 8 months ago

The wife and I decided to list our house or should I say prepare to list it as I have a large list of things to complete prior. Here's the one that is hanging me up the most... the deck that is above our living room.

So we bought this house about 8 years ago. It had a deck above the living room which overlooks the hillside woods that we live in. After a year of ownership, we decided to reside the house (re-insulate and install AC in the process) and as a result the deck was torn off and never reinstalled although there is a door to go up there from inside the house and half a stairway on both ends. The old deck was treated decking sitting on top of 1" pvc sleepers and railing as you see in the pictures. The roofing on this area is EPDM rubber and appears to be in good shape.
House as bought 8 years ago... ugly

For the new deck, I plan to put down treated 2x4 sleepers with EPDM rubber on the bottom side parallel with the floor joists. I will cut these sleepers so that the resulting deck is level (rooftop slopes to drain). I go back and forth on whether or not to palletize the new floor so that it is easily removed to clean the rooftop. The old floor was just resting on the PVC pipes at an angle like shown.
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Here is how it sits today...
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I'm a little hung up on the railing system. It looks like it was just 4x4's screwed into the side of the house, nothing puncturing the topside of the rubber roof (well maybe a couple L brackets, IIRC). The top of this rubber roof is probably 12-15' off the ground. I would caulk the side of the 4x4 that face the house, I could even apply some rubber in order for it to not leak in the mounting holes.

#2 8 months ago

I don't really see a shortcut here. If it were me, I would tear the rubber roof surface off and structurally support the perimeter framing properly before attaching the rail so that it will accommodate loads per code requirements, then reinstall EDPM membrane, proper sloped sleepers and flooring over the roof.

"With the standard safety factor of 2.5 used by engineers, that means railing and posts must be designed to resist a 300-pound uniform load or a 500 pound point load. The main concern is a push outward from people leaning against the railing. Few older deck railings can meet this requirement, but building inspectors and professional deck builders are starting to pay more attention to this critical detail. Even if you can squeak by with a weaker railing, do you really want to?"
The excerpt above is part of a larger detail here - https://buildingadvisor.com/materials/decks-porches/building-deck-railings/

First, find out your local code requirements. I'd also make sure the flashing systems, joist tape and caulking is done properly as a part of the rebuild.

#3 8 months ago

Thanks for the reply. I am going to have someone come out and quote it... ughhh, that is not going to be cheap.

#4 8 months ago

Useless you are completely comfortable building the deck and are communicating with the local building officials and obtaining permits, I would recommend contacting a licensed contractor with a good reputation. I am a home inspector and I run across decks all the time that are built incorrectly and are unsafe. In the end, you may have to pay someone to come in and fix everything you did wrong. Good luck with whatever decision you make!

#5 8 months ago

Yeah... probably why it has gone so long without me doing much about it. It really could be a great deck and should be done correct, especially considering that we plan on listing the house after it is complete.

#6 8 months ago

I'd use composite vs wood, never warps and don't have to treat it or stain it.

#7 8 months ago
Quoted from jake35:

I'd use composite vs wood, never warps and don't have to treat it or stain it.

Cost will drive that decision. I don't think the house will sell better with one versus the other. If I were keeping it then I'd go composite, no doubt.

#8 8 months ago
Quoted from kcZ:

Looking for deck building advice.

Well...you'll need 52 cards to start. Or 54 if you want a couple jokers in the deck.

#9 8 months ago
Quoted from kcZ:

Cost will drive that decision. I don't think the house will sell better with one versus the other. If I were keeping it then I'd go composite, no doubt.

Realize that you will likely only recoup an average investment of 80 percent of the deck cost. If you spend $10000 on a deck, you'll add around $8000 to the value of the home. (In theory)

#10 8 months ago

This will be big bucks. I am an estimator for construction.

#11 8 months ago
Quoted from Multiballmaniac1:

This will be big bucks. I am an estimator for construction.

Yeah but it needs to get done. Probably won't be able to afford composite.

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