What Are the Different Types of Decking?
There are many different types and techniques of decking construction that are relevant for different variations of garden. Below are some of the ways you might consider building a deck which is perfect for your garden project.
Two tools that will help you to do the job properly are:
Use timber posts concreted into the ground to hold the structure in place.
The decking design will depend on the space you have which is a result of how high above the ground the deck is to be. Where space allows use beams to support joists, for example, if your deck is 3.60m wide and you have created a framework supported with Timber Posts and have fixed in place your 3.60m joists, then set at 450mm centres without additional support. At 3.60m long these joists will be too flexible to support the deck in the centre.
This is where another larger timber rail (sometimes called a beam), set this immediately under and at 90 degrees to you. Set joists at approx every 1.8m in mid position with posts to support the beam. Without too many additional posts you now have a firm deck structure which you may fix your decking Boards to.
Ground Level Deck
A ground level deck is built as closely as possible to the ground with the timber bearers which support the decking boards being laid directly onto paving slabs.
Installing Supports for a Ground Level Deck
The joists are rested directly on to a suitable foundation pad such as a building block or 50mm thick paving slab. The slab can be placed onto a bed of sand, sand/cement mix or lean mix concrete. To prevent the joists twisting, timber of the same size as the joists are fixed between them.
These are called noggins and are staggered to enable them to be nailed into position through the joist and into the end of the noggin.
A multi-level deck refers to the layout of the decking surface. To make the garden decking more interesting or to suit the conditions on site, the decking may be laid out to give several levels.
A raised deck is supported above ground level by being attached to timber legs. Access to the garden decking is usually by steps, stairs or ramp. Attach a 100 x 50mm or 150 x 50mm timber wall plate to the house wall using masonry fixings if appropriate.
Joist hangers may then be fixed to the wall plate to accept the deck joists. The wall plate must be fixed below the damp proof course.
Installing Posts For A Raised Deck
The simplest method is to excavate a hole approximately 100mm over depth for the post you are using. Back fill with approximately 100mm of concrete or until the correct height for the post is achieved. The hole is then back filled with concrete to within 150mm of the surface, while keeping the post plumb and the concrete compacted around the post.
Deck For Sloping Ground
A deck for sloping ground may incorporate both the characteristics of the raised decking and ground level decking.
These are for guidance only and may be varied to suit site conditions and the size of timber being used for construction.