Sign in to follow this  
bleedinblue

Refreshing our deck...the RIGHT way to secure posts?

Recommended Posts

A while back I asked here about comositre decking.  My wife had pretty much vetoed the idea and wants to stick with wood.  That certainly makes it much easier and cheaper at least. 

I am basically just going to rip out the boards that are warped or rotted.  Should be easy to do in a day I think. 

The hardest part will be these 6x6 posts.  The deck's main posts go to the ground and into concrete, those are still solid.  It's these short posts, that don't go to the ground, that are the problem.  Every single one of them (four, I think) are loose and can be easily shaken with hand pressure.  I'm assuming they're rotten and need replaced. 

What I'm not sure of is how to fasten the new posts.  You can see how they were originally fastened, just with screws and 2x6 bracing.  That does not seem correct to me...maybe it was code 18 years ago, but it doesn't seem like the best way to do it.

Also...the original builder just toe nailed all of the railings to the posts.  I don't like that.  The nail heads end up popping up and it just generally looks like shoddy work.  Would it be ridiculous to use pocket holes for the rebuild? 

20180914_135439.jpg

20180914_135525.jpg

20180914_135459.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is provided by my city for code requirements.  It's confusing, but as far as I can tell it only describes how to attach guard posts to the OUTSIDE of the rim joists.  I guess the idea is the same...just bolts through the (notched) posts and counter bored into the rim joists...that just doesn't seem very substantial to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They way they were done looks pretty decent can't you just redo it the same way. If the are loose from rotting material i don't know it much matters how they were attached rotted wood isn't stable.

I guess think of it like woodworking you have a tenon and need a mortise to hold the post up.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, bleedinblue said:

...The hardest part will be these 6x6 posts.  The deck's main posts go to the ground and into concrete, those are still solid.  It's these short posts, that don't go to the ground, that are the problem.  Every single one of them (four, I think) are loose and can be easily shaken with hand pressure.  I'm assuming they're rotten and need replaced. 

Its likely that they were installed wet have shrunk as they dried and now have come loose. Before replacing them I would confirm the rot if they appear ok (no rot)  I would remove the cover board and bolt them on with a couple 1/2" galvanized bolts with big washers, lock nuts and nuts. like this

131484692_deckpost.JPG.cc7ef8266e9a8fcd8e69fa348667bcab.JPG

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know that they were solid when we moved into the house in 2011, which was about 15 years after the house was built.  I can't be certain when the deck was built, but it wasn't freshly built when we bought the house.

I'm totally fine with re-doing what was done before, if that's acceptable.  I just didn't/don't know if it is.  If it's that simple, that's great.  Even adding in a couple bolts per post would be a piece of cake.  It is possible the posts themselves are still solid and the wood movement has caused the screws/nails to fail.  I'm not sure if I will know for certain until I start the tear down.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd add bolts in like Paul has shown in my mind i'm woding if going going through the 2 cross braces and the post would get around having to have a bolt head on the outside of the deck.

So up and down in your under the skirt picture instead of side to side.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The way they secured those post actually is good, mostly. Trouble is they just used nails & I bet no adhesive. So If you use through bolts & construction adhesive it'll stay solid for many years. And I'd use some Simpson brackets to help secure the cross members to the joists. I rebuilt my deck with a pergola & secured the 6x6 cedar columns in a similar manner & it's very solid.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My previous deck railing was attached as you show, with carriage bolts. Mine didn't have the bracing between the joists, so it did flex a bit, but the rim joist was 10" wide. I see no issue with that attachment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For comparison, on my deck overhaul las year, I abandoned the cantilevered design, and took all my railing posts to the ground, resting on concrete 'deck blocks'  like these: https://m.lowes.com/pd/Common-7-in-x-11-in-x-11-in-Actual-7-125-in-x-10-375-in-x-10-375-in-Concrete-Deck-Block/50113084

The blocks are set into the ground an inch or two. With the end of the post nestled in the block, and bolted to the deck's rim joist, the railing Does. Not. Move.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you do install bolts make sure they're still tight over the course of a year or two. Re-skinned a deck at my parent's townhouse where the bolts were so loose you could spin the nuts without a wrench. Not sure if the wood shrunk or the builder forgot to tighten them

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I got on this yesterday.  After taking the skirt boards off, I'm not happy with the amount of rot at the ends of the deck/floor boards.  I put a couple 1/2" bolts through one of the posts, directly through the joist.  I'd say it's about 50% better, but it's still far from rock solid.  There is some twist going on in the joist.   I hit the brakes at that point to re-assess. 

At this point I think I'm going to replace all of the deck boards too...they're not horrible, but it seems dumb for me to get into this and leave boards that are beginning to fail.  I'd just have to do it in a couple years, so may as well do it all at once. 

My neighbor is a contractor and says he is going to help secure the posts. 

Now I have to store all this dang cedar for a while.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Who's Online   1 Member, 0 Anonymous, 164 Guests (See full list)

  • Forum Statistics

    28785
    Total Topics
    388880
    Total Posts
  • Member Statistics

    21741
    Total Members
    1529
    Most Online
    Mik
    Newest Member
    Mik
    Joined