Deck safety should be very important to any homeowner. Sadly, deck collapses are often reported at an average rate of 21% per year. In many cases, the failing decks were built incorrectly, not properly maintained, or beyond their lifespan of 10-15 years. Deck maintenance is often overlooked. Here are a few of the common mistakes that most homeowners see:
- Improper railing height and baluster spacing – Building codes have very specific measurements for railings in balusters to avoid accidents and injuries
- Underside structural members – Avoid deck warping and collapse by properly sizing all members and components of your deck.
- Improper deck materials – Weather-resistant materials are necessary on exterior structures to prevent rot or deterioration.
- Undersize footings – Footings create a solid base for the posts of your deck. Undersize footings can lead to sagging, warping, or collapse.
- Improper attachment to structure and incorrect fasteners – How are your deck attaches to your home determines its safety and durability. This is an area you may want to overbuild beyond the minimum standards of requirements.
- Improper flashings or missing flashing – Every deck must address water management. Water can soak into your home at the point where the deck connects to the house. Properly installed flashing will prevent erosion.
These are just a few common areas that need to be addressed in order for your deck to remain safe.