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Phase 2: Joists and Planks

Sorry it's been a while since my last post. Once Phase 2 got started, I also went back to work. Ah, the joys of teaching. Those of you who are teachers out there can understand the sheer insanity of my last two weeks! So here we are. Classroom is set up, students are three days in, and it's the weekend!

So, back to the deck. I'm pretty happy with where we're at with its progress. We still have a long way to go, but I'm being patient. Like I mentioned in my last blog, there was quite a bit of damage to some of the joists due to the fire pit. So our construction magician, Cesar, started by replacing those joists that were basically charred!

Here are some shots of the new joists going in:

Lookin' good, right!? The next step was for the planks to go down. At this point, we were faced with a dilemma. Do we go with composite decking (Trex) or pressure treated wood? There were numerous factors to evaluate before making a decision. We needed to ask questions like: How will the deck be used? Is it in a shaded area or a sunny one? How long do we plan to live in our home? Do we plan on doing our own deck maintenance or hiring a company to do it for us? As you can see, the questions are endless. Our choice:: pressure treated wood. And I'll tell you why.

First off, I needed to learn what pressure treated wood actually is. Pressure treated wood is wood that has been infused with chemical preservatives to protect the wood from rot and insects. The wood is placed in a depressurized holding tank that removes the air and replaces it with a preservative. So now that's out of the way...but why use it? The process is, by far, the best way to avoid harmful rot and insects.. High-quality, natural wood can stand the test of time, and it’s always the best choice when it comes to building a long lasting deck (I understand that's not everyone's opinion). We also love the authentic look of real wood, so we knew that pressure treated wood was the way we should go. Also, it is a necessity to stain and seal your deck to maintain its integrity. With that being said, we have the flexibility to change the look of our deck at any time. Again, a plus for us, as I tend to get bored with the look of things easily (presently on our fourth area rug in our den in a year and a half!).

Oh, and did I mention it's cheaper than Trex? Another plus! :)

Here are some pics of the planks going down:

Annnnd complete!

That's the window well in the far left corner in the pic above. The plan is to get some metal grating that will be fitted to the well. It will lie flush with the deck (pics of that will be coming in the final reveal). It looks so much "cleaner" than the handrail around the window well that used to be there - yuck! (pic below).

Another shot of the entire deck planked!

In the "before" photo below, you can catch a glimpse of the filthy white siding on the right hand side. That's the side of our garage. Cesar ripped that off and put cedar shingles there instead to match the rest of the house.



Huge difference, right!?

We have two sets of stairs that lead to the deck. One is from the driveway to a landing, and the other is from the landing to the deck. At this point, Cesar has finished the landing and the first staircase.

Closeup of the landing:

Here is the first set of steps from the driveway:

So this is where we're at. Next step is to finish the stairs, then begin working on the columns and the posts for the handrails - a.k.a. "Phase 3"!

Thanks for stopping by!


xo, Claudine

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