5 Replies Latest reply on Feb 4, 2015 2:23 PM by BoBraxton

    dismantle three and three


      When we built this deck, our son lived at home. That was about three decades ago. Now there are three generations and we all plan to participate today to begin dismantling.

      This back deck has served us well (and still does).

      We intend to be making way for a new enclosed space - out the same sliding glass door

      which itself was replaced around 1994, the year Mother-in-Love turned ninety years of age.

      I had a lot more chances to build / construct with our one offspring.

        • Re: dismantle three and three

          A new deck could be built - with railings - Trex material - about 14' x 16' and slightly lower than the inside floor of the new 4-season enclosure. Spouse seems to be getting "cold feet" (partly the expense - but also she likes the idea of a stone patio. My personal concerns to be specified - the landscaper, not the builder, would do stones - has to do both with drainage and with stability - for "pavers" I read a base 4 1/2" of 3/4" crushed stone, then 1" of cement powder(?) then the surface material and this for "light-duty" patio and walkway(s). I do not consider patio, in particular, to be "light-duty").

          Since house was built circa 1970, our driveway (where it joins floor of the garage) has gone down pretty close to one foot, about 3 inches in 7 years each. Also, where we mulch, heavy rain puddles a lot. I do not want a ground level stone(s) patio that collects water like a swimming pool, mulch, leaves, debris and becomes a mud hole. If I wanted that, I would move in with the swine.

            • Re: dismantle three and three

              We built a raised 2-level TREX deck with stairs, seats and lights or more correctly had it built. The contractors bid a fixed price with us paying for the materials within that fixed price. They lost their butts! TREX is expensive (maybe 3 times that of treated wood) and VERY HEAVY and our deck is raised way up in the air to the second level. You will be surprised at the weight of a 6"x16' TREX board. I asked one of the owners how long he thought that his 4-man team would take to build the deck. He told me 2 weeks. It took 6 WEEKS!


              One thing that we did wrong was to allow the contractor to reuse the base of the existing balcony portion of the deck to save a few bucks. BAD CHOICE! TREX is basically plastic with wood pieces in it. If you do not get the deck perfectly level with structural supports underneath close together you can start to notice the deck sagging. This same condition can also occur on railings, say, if the contractor is not very careful of lengths and supports to components.


              That said, I sure do NOT miss having to clean and re-stain wood decks. We live in an area where mold is easy to grow. Being a bit lazy, I wait 4-5 years and then use a bleach-based deck cleaner from Olympic as I recall. I thought that we had defective TREX material and even sent in a claim which was refused, of course. I had been putting down the cleaner mixed with water using a low-pressure power washer (do NOT use a high powered one or you void your warranty and cause pitting) and scrubbing away with a brush. Didn't clean it! I left the washer sitting on the deck once and went for a short break. When I came back I noticed that the bleach material had dripped out onto the deck and it was clean! After that I wet the deck down to avoid bleach burn and apply the cleaner straight, let it set for 10-15 minutes and then just low power-wash it off. No scrubbing and the deck is clean. Just note that applying a bleach to a deck will give a slight whitening of the deck until it starts accumulating a bit of dirt and other stuff.

                • Re: dismantle three and three

                  Thank you greatly.

                  Spouse contacted the Building (just) in time - they have not yet "pulled" permits so we are able to back out of the "deck" Option - portion of what could have been - in favor of working with Landscaper. I am hoping to be able to move that expense into tax year 2016. We did not really want deck railings. The deck I just dismantled was only two steps above the lawn but at that height (one low corner), railing is required. My spouse fancies a stone patio which is less expensive and also has a lot more design flexibility - AND does not require railing, since it would be only deep enough for drainage and not sinking to become a pool or mud hole.

                    • Re: dismantle three and three

                      Other than it sounds like your spouse didn't seem to want a deck, what part of my "story" was your tipping point? Our deck is beautiful, but one needs to understand what they are asking to be built. I missed a few points, but they are not a disaster.


                      Our elevated deck is high enough to break your neck if you ever go over the railing. The old existing balcony with no access from the ground or garage area was one of the 2 things that the spouse did not like about this house. She did not want to have to go back and forth through the living room to get to the grill sitting there, and she wanted direct access to the kitchen by going up the deck stairs and entering through the new sliding door when unloading groceries from the car. Oh, I forgot to tell you that a new door means removing a large double window, cutting out exterior brick and adding a new door and lights. So after more money than I paid to buy some new cars in the past, I solved the spouse's concerns. If fact, from another bid on the deck by a landscaper, it probably should have cost over twice what we paid. I did not even put up any fight over a bid increase when I asked to add seats around the deck so that the contractor might make some money. I don't think that he did. But I did slip in a few deck seat and step lights after construction was well underway for only the cost of the materials. Maybe I should have told the spouse that I would have a laundry sink put in, her 2nd dislike, and reneged on the deck. $$$$


                      But the deck overlooks a view that I thought that we could never afford when leaving the big, big city and moving to the "country". Along with the long springs and falls here, it is a real asset for resale and a joy to sit on in the evenings.  :-)))

                        • Re: dismantle three and three

                          Partly the emphasis on proper support and absolutely level.

                          We have not experience with this Design / Build

                          but they began 27 years ago with building decks.


                          Of course I could build the deck myself but we already had

                          more then 25 years of that - now the spouse's turn (for next two to three decades).


                          More to the point, the measurements of the (new to be) deck crashed into a dogwood

                          which we had placed after the death of the oldest (at that time) member of the church spouse pastored 27 years.

                          Further, (we are a corner lot with two fronts and two sides) - the two steps down toward the street which is our

                          house address would have run smack into our most beautiful azalea bush. So, I did not fancy cutting back on the

                          deck's dimensions. Our original deck (I just dismantled) had a minimal rail. Of course one could fall off a porch this

                          low and literally break their neck. Maybe we were just lucky, but no one ever got injured these three decades


                          We have agreed for Hardi-plank not only on the 4-season but on all the remainder of the house as well.

                          T1-11 is looking pretty sorry after 1970 built (painted, presumably)

                          painted around 1983 before we bought in 84, I painted once over a period of several years,

                          once painted by professional (I am not happy with what happened) - among which,

                          they painted the back deck - which was natural (treated) wood - totally uncalled for.

                          Spouse has decided to use one quarter of the legacy deck (moving it) as a stage for

                          two grandchildren (our only two) with a bent for theater and dancing (tap-dancing and otherwise)


                          Fun for all of us.