KeyPatio.pro is a deck building company based in East Pikeland. As one of the finest deck contractors, we strive to deliver beautiful outdoor decks. We are fully licensed and insured to work in East Pikeland. Our company prides itself on providing quality craftsmanship, excellent customer service, and building a personal relationship with our clients that continues even after your project is completed. Our company will work closely with you through every step of the design and construction process in order to create a customized outdoor living space that suits your needs. With our attention to detail, you can be assured that your project will be completed above and beyond your expectations.
We are the professional East Pikeland custom deck builder that you can reach out to for all of your deck building needs. You may have plans to renovate an existing deck or to build a new deck from the ground up in your yard. Whether you have the desire to construct a small, uncovered deck or an elaborate, multi-level deck with custom features, we can help you to bring your vision to life with remarkable results. We want to give you an outdoor space that adds value and function to your home.
Custom Deck Builder in East Pikeland
The materials and finishes that we use on the interior of our homes require cleaning and occasional maintenance; we dust, we vacuum, we mop-n-glo to keep them looking good and long lasting. Without too much effort we can stay ahead of the wear and tear from our kids and our pets.
Materials on the outside, however take a daily beating from the sun, wind, rain, temperature changes, and other environmental elements (in addition to kids and dogs). Those materials need a great deal more care and maintenance but that can be reduced somewhat by selecting the proper materials to suit your goals.
Outdoor decks are subject to a great deal of abuse - the deck surface is especially susceptible to sun and rain. Wood is the most popular surface for decks, but it's also the quickest to wear out. Fortunately there are a variety of deck surface products available that allow you to choose between appearance, cost, and the effort needed to keep your deck looking great for many years.
Natural Wood Decking
Natural wood is the obvious first choice for decking. It's sturdy, attractive, easy to work with, and it comes in a wide variety of types with different qualities and costs.
Pressure-treated wood decking is far and away the most popular decking surface in use today. Most PT lumber is made from Southern Yellow Pine, impregnated with ACQ, a chemical that increases the wood's resistance to rot and insect damage. But treated lumber is often poorer quality material so the wood shrinks, cracks, and splits more easily.
A better choice for "real" wood decks is one of the many woods that have a natural resistance to rot and insect damage. These woods include Western Red Cedar, Redwood, and some species of tropical hardwoods. While these better quality decking materials last longer and look better they also cost more. One of the very best natural deck surfaces is a group of South American hardwoods called Ipe ("Ipe" is Portuguese for hardwood). These are extremely dense, tight-grained woods, dark in color and virtually free from knots. Ipe is very hard, heavy, and difficult to work with but is also very beautiful and is nearly indestructible. Expect to pay top dollar for Ipe materials and the labor to install it.
The use of any type of natural wood decking comes with some negative environmental impact. When pressure-treated decking is disposed of, the chemicals used to treat the wood may leach into groundwater; burning it puts these same chemicals into the air. And while the new ACQ treatment is less toxic than the previous CCA (which contains arsenic) the long-term effects of the chemical aren't fully known.
Much of the tropical hardwood used for decking material is plantation-grown, but some isn't and at the retail level it's nearly impossible to tell the difference. Most folks don't want their decks built at the expense of an acre of rainforest.
Wood Composite Decking
Wood Composite decking has become very popular recently due to its longevity and environmentally friendly characteristics. It's a pretty good imitation of natural wood in workability and appearance.
Sold under names like Trex, Correctdeck, and Timbertech, composite decking boards are made from recycled plastic (usually grocery bags or milk jugs) and ground-up waste wood. It can be cut and attached like real wood and requires almost no maintenance. Composite decking mimics the look of natural wood but varies in appearance and performance depending upon the manufacturer and the ratio of plastic to wood in the mix, usually about 50-60% wood products.
Although composite decking can't be stained or painted like natural wood, many manufacturers produce boards in several colors. Since the color is throughout the material, chips and scrapes don't require restaining to maintain a consistent appearance. And because of the high wood content, the uncolored composite boards weather to a pleasing silver-gray.
As with any decking surface, the method of securing composite decking to the framing can improve or reduce the appearance of the deck. Poor installation can even affect the structural integrity of the boards. Ideally, all decking boards should be installed with concealed fasteners - more effort and expense, but the result is a better looking and longer lasting deck.
There are a few other choices in decking - Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) for example, but they look much less like "traditional" decking than natural wood or wood composite. All-plastic and aluminum decking products also require the use of a large number of end caps, specialized fasteners, and other proprietary parts and pieces that can detract from the overall appearance of the deck.
Your choice of decking depends upon the desired appearance, budget, and your tolerance for the required maintenance of different materials. A good balance of those characteristics should result in a deck surface that the whole family will enjoy for many years - kids, dogs, and all.
Planning For a New Deck
How to build a deck? Building a wood deck correctly can create the perfect transition between your home and your backyard. How to build a deck planning and construction should result in a wonderful place to go to relax and unwind after a hectic day. Whether you are going to have your deck built by a professional or do it yourself, building a deck correctly requires proper planning and design.
Here are five basic considerations for building a wooden deck:
1. Choose Your Deck Type - there are several types of decks you can have for your home. An outdoor patio deck can be attached to your home. A convenient location for your outdoor patio deck could be attached to the family room or kitchen. How to build a deck that is a destination deck? A destination deck would typically be located in a special place with a view and would not be connected to your home. You might have a winding path that would lead to the destination deck. How to build a deck that is a connector deck? A connector deck is several smaller decks of any shape or size connected to each other with pathways.
2. Consider Your Deck Activities - when building a wood deck, will your deck be a place to grill and barbecue? Are you going to have parties and entertain family and friends? Is your deck going to be a quiet place for lounging, reading or enjoying your favorite beverage? Will you have a luxurious hot tub on your deck? To increase privacy, will you have landscaping, plants or trees around your deck? Take some time and think through how to build a deck that will perform the way you want. Go online and buy a good book on planning and building a wood deck.
3. Decide Your Deck Size - if your house and backyard is smaller and you won't entertain large groups, you likely don't need a large deck. Too large a deck can actually make the house appear smaller. Keep it simple, but add an angle or two to the deck design if you want. When building a wood deck, you can divide the deck into two areas - one area for lounging and sunning and another section for cooking and dining.
4. What Deck Materials Will You Use - if you will be building a wooden deck, there are several structural parts. Your deck may need concrete footings that extend below the frostline if you'll have freezing winters. If your deck will be on sandy soil, you may need to build larger footings that will support the deck posts or beams.
The posts can be 4"x4" lumber which is generally strong enough to support the deck. If your deck is above ground, you may be required to use 6"x6" structural posts. The deck beams will rest horizontally on the posts and will support the deck joists. Deck joists will be spaced horizontally every 12", 16" or 24" and will support the decking boards. The decking boards are the floor of your deck that span from joist to joist.
5. Design and Build It Yourself or Hire a Professional - unless you live in a very rural area, there will probably be building code requirements, permits and inspections needed when building a wooden deck project. Contact your local building official to see what is required in your area. One major advantage to having qualified professionals help is that they understand the legal side of how to build a deck and can help ensure building code requirements are met.
One of the best ways to understand how to build a deck is to view wood deck plans that have been built many times. Seeing attractive deck plans can give you deck building ideas that will simplify your planning and design.
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