Decks are a perfect area for outdoor
entertaining and outdoor relaxing. The style of deck you
choose to build determines how you use your deck, as well
as how you build it. Although similar in appearance,
different decks can require different construction
Our Installation Services experts built this Ground-Level
deck and documented the steps taken in order to help you
build your own outdoor living area.
You will see how the deck was assembled, why material
choices were made, and the approximate time it took to do
the work. Use this example to help you plan your own deck.
1. Batterboards and
mason's string lines were used to lay out footing
locations for a deck that is approximately 8 feet wide
and 10 feet long. Six holes for 8-inch-diameter
footings were dug with a posthole digger. Each hole is
12 inches deep. There is no frost line to deal with
since this is a freestanding deck. Tube forms were
used to level the footings about 1 inch above ground
Approximate time for a novice (with a helper) to lay
out footing locations, dig holes, and level tube forms
for this deck: 5-7 hours.
2. Six 60-pound bags of
ready-mix concrete were mixed in a wheelbarrow. Post
anchors for 4x4 posts were attached to the footings
after the concrete cured for 48 hours. The anchors
were aligned with a long straight board. Diagonal
measurements were checked to square the anchor
3. Beams were made from
double 2x6s. They were attached in the post anchors. A
1/2-inch-thick pressure-treated shim was installed
between the beam and one side of the anchor at each
footing. The anchor is 31/2 inches wide and the beam
is 3 inches thick.
4. Beam alignment was
checked and adjusted as necessary to make certain
beams were square.
5. 2x6 rim joists were
attached to the ends of the beams. Angle brackets were
installed to provide additional support for the corner
6. Inner 2x6 joists were
attached to the beam faces with joist hangers.
7. 2x6 decking was
installed perpendicular to the joists. Decking was
fastened with deck screws. Ends of boards hang over
edge of deck and will be trimmed to length after
8. A chalk line was
snapped to mark a straight cutting line. Decking was
trimmed to length with a circular saw.