Dec 12, 2020

Planning Your Twin Cities Wood or Composite Deck Building Project

Our team answers homeowner questions every weekend on WCCO 830 AM from 9:00 am-10:00 am.  Have your most pressing home improvement questions answered by calling 651-461-9226.  Here’s must-know information from our in-house deck specialist, Luke Panek, shared on 12.12.20. 

Maintenance-Free Material & Deck Railings

The winter months provide the optimum time to commence planning for a spring deck installation.  More often than not, after weighing the pros and cons of popular decking materials, homeowners are opting for maintenance-free selections over wood.  It’s worth noting that even if a homeowner prefers the beauty of wood, they still have the ability to select maintenance-free railing systems.  Popular deck railing materials include metal, glass, aluminum, and steel.

Fortress Steel Railing Staircase

It’s no secret that wood deck maintenance requires a substantial amount of time in order to keep it looking the best.  New treated wooden deck boards often start with moisture rates as high as 65%-70%.  Before they can be stained, the deck moisture levels in the deck boards should be less than 15%.  A moisture meter should be used to confirm moisture rates.  Kiln dried treated pine has significantly lower moisture levels and can often be stained soon after installation.  In the realm of wood, kiln dried treated lumber is preferred by contractors and homeowners alike because it has a lower probability of shrinking, cracking, and warping.

Replacing Wood With Composite Decking

When replacing a wooden deck with a composite material, it can be tempting to reuse the same substructure.  However, this isn’t always the wisest decision.  However, most of the time, because it’s had cedar wood decking on top of it, there is likely a bit of decay on top of the boards and on top of the joists.  This creates a soft consistency and texture.  When putting new composite deck boards on top of the preexisting joists, the imperfections at the top of the joists will be visible.  Although, structurally they will be durable enough to last another decade, this approach is not recommended.  The optimum amount of spacing for wood and synthetic composite deck boards often varies, which is a secondary reason a new substructure should be installed.


What You Should Know About Deck Footings

When it comes to deck footings, helical screw piles are overwhelmingly popular in the Midwest.  They are 12 inches in diameter and are comprised of galvanized steel.  The equipment used to install the footings into the ground is about seven feet and looks like an auger used in ice fishing.  The machine is so powerful that it can even dig footings in areas with a substantial number of rocks.  Helical piers are also heavily resistant to movement in frosty conditions.  To tell if deck posts need replacement, contractors pull gravel or soil from the base of the post to examine the post for decay.  Cedar posts have a shorter lifespan than a green treated post.

Go Behind the Scenes On a Deck Installation by Lindus Construction:

Should You Consider A New Deck Or Porch?

Homeowners opting to expand their outdoor living space frequently weigh the pros and cons of whether a deck or a porch makes more sense.  Some may even want to consider a three or four seasons room.  One of the biggest differences between a deck and a porch is the size and weight the footings must hold.  Decks just need to support railings, while a porch will need to able to sustain siding, windows, and a roof.  Oftentimes a new deck can be built with larger footings that allow for the option to expand into a porch later.

Listen to the Entire Decking Show Here:

Our Composite Deck Installation Projects:

What Homeowners Say About The Work Our Deck Builders Execute:

"Deck looks nice.  Thank you!"

Hector G.
Minneapolis, MN
November 10, 2022

"We love our new deck! Triston and Dylan worked hard and did a nice job. They were responsive to any request or thought I had about logistics too. Thanks so much!"

Patti A.
Plymouth, MN
October 13, 2022

"Lindus Construction added a landing and steps to our 2nd floor exterior deck. They completed sooner than promised and did an outstanding job. The materials used are top notch, the construction was done with very good quality, and they look beautiful while being very sturdy. Everything was to code and the post construction inspection found no problems. I'm glad I chose them!"

Mark M.
Brooklyn Park, MN
October 3, 2022

"You have gone the extra mile for us. Thank you - what a great worker Lindus has! "We have enjoyed having you here."

Jay M.
Lindstrom, MN
September 30, 2022

"I recently needed my 22 year old wooden deck replaced and contacted Lindus Construction. Dave, the sales rep, was very responsive and answered my questions. He even looked at the other estimates I received and went over them line by line to explain the differences and signed with Lindus. Chad and Logan did the tear down and rebuild of my deck and they were great! Very efficient, cleaned up the area and constructed the deck in a couple of days. I love it! It looks beautiful and is very well constructed. Then a couple of weeks later, Josh from Lindus called to ask to inspect the deck. I couldn't believe it. Lindus has their own inspectors! I've never seen that before. If you need a new deck, I'd highly recommend contacting Lindus Construction. They aren't the cheapest...but they are the best quality!"

Ginnee B.
Prior Lake, MN
July 5, 2022

"Great working with Lindus.  Easy to see the work being done and if had any questions they willing to answer an explain."

Diane S.
Prior Lake, MN
June 13, 2022
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