Are you thinking about adding a new deck or replacing an old one?  If so, are you wondering which type of deck design is practical, functional, attractive and most befitting your home and property?

Well, let’s begin by explaining the five most popular deck designs, from simple-to-elaborate and everything-in-between.

Platform Deck

A platform deck — also referred to as a low deck, grade-level deck, ground-level deck, patio deck or floating deck — is designed and built a few inches off the ground.  Simply put, it’s a (slightly!) elevated space to enjoy your backyard.

Detached Platform Deck with Pergola by Archadeck

Detached Platform Deck with Pergola by Archadeck

Low level decks are often attached to your home; however, a detached structure might work well too.  Some have railings.  Some don’t have rails.  And some use a bench in lieu of rails to help define the deck’s perimeter and provide seating as well. Read the rest of this entry »

It’s summer which means it’s time to get outdoors for grilling, dining, lounging and more!  So what’s stopping you?

Backyard Deck for Lounging, Grilling, Dining, by Archadeck

Backyard Deck for Lounging, Grilling, Dining, by Archadeck

Is your existing drab deck or plain patio preventing you from actually using your outdoor space?

Or is the problem bigger?

Is your backyard a barren wasteland and unconducive for lounging or entertaining… at all?

Well, you’ve come to the right place to either ‘fix-the-old’ or ‘design-the-new’ when it comes to outdoor living.

Let’s begin with some simple solutions to upgrade an existing deck or patio. Read the rest of this entry »

Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer.  Backyard pools are open for business and it’s ‘swim time’ for those who enjoy the water.

To complement a swimming pool, you’ll need to consider ways to ‘tie it all together’ — your home, yard and pool — creating an attractive outdoor space and a place for entertaining, lounging and relief from the sun.

Deck and Screened Porch for Backyard Pool by Archadeck

Deck and Screened Porch for Backyard Pool by Archadeck

For swimmers and onlookers alike, a deck, pergola, porch — or all three — could be a perfect match for a summertime getaway right in your own backyard.

Pergola ideas for swimming pools Read the rest of this entry »

Ok so you’ve chosen your deck design and decking materials but now what?  Well, it’s time to stylize your rails.

Stop here and spend some time examining your options.

Decks with no railing

Did you know that deck rails might be optional?  If your deck is low-to-the-ground you can often skip the rails altogether.  Local building codes and your personal circumstances will be the deciding factors.

Low Deck without Rails by Archadeck

Low Deck without Rails by Archadeck

When a deck is used by young children or elderly folks, railing — even if not dictated by local building codes — might be a real necessity.

Low Deck with Rails, St. Louis Mo, by Archadeck

Low Deck with Rails, St. Louis Mo, by Archadeck

And no matter the height of your deck, a rail with a gate is a must-have feature for many parents and pet owners, especially if their backyard isn’t fenced.

Benches as deck rails

If your deck is low or grade-level and railing isn’t required by local ordinances, built-in perimeter benches can be used to define and polish-off the edges while providing extra seating too.  Benches as a rail substitute are particularly functional for small deck designs.

Low Deck without Railing and Corner Bench by Archadeck

Low Deck without Railing and Corner Bench by Archadeck

Partial deck railing

Partial deck railings are often needed for safety; however, they can be used simply for style too.  Safety-wise, even if your deck is just slightly raised, it’s best to install a handrail on one or both sides of the steps.  Deck step rails will clearly mark an entrance/exit from a deck to the backyard and/or provide a grasping surface to eliminate falls.

Deck with Partial Rails for Safety, by Archadeck

Deck with Partial Rails for Safety, by Archadeck

Platform Deck with Partial Rails for Style, by Archadeck

Platform Deck with Partial Rails for Style, by Archadeck

Low Deck with Step Handrail for Safety, by Archadeck

Low Deck with Step Handrail for Safety, by Archadeck

Next, let’s assume your deck does require railing.  Oh-boy-oh-boy.  More (and more!) options…

Deck and rails that match Read the rest of this entry »

June is just around the corner.  Temperatures are creeping upward.  And with the summertime sun looming overhead, most homeowners want to increase the comfort and usability of their deck or patio during the height of the sunny-season.  But how?

Wood Deck with Pergola and Gazebo for Backyard Shade by Archadeck

Wood Deck with Pergola and Gazebo for Backyard Shade by Archadeck

Whether you prefer to DIY or go-to-the-pro’s, there are plenty of fantastic options for backyard shade in 2015, no matter your style or budget.

Patio Shade by Archadeck

Patio Shade by Archadeck

So there’s no need to fret or sweat.  Read on! Read the rest of this entry »

Color schemes and comfortable furnishings are an important part of your home décor — whether inside or out — and so is lighting.  Lighting is one of the easiest and least expensive ways to get the biggest-bang-for-your-buck with a deck, screened porch or pergola addition because it extends the use of your outdoor space into the evening hours.

Outdoor lighting is a must-have feature in 2015.

Outdoor Living Space with Lighting -- Wall Mount, Deck Rail Lighting and Table Top Candles, Project by Archadeck

Outdoor Living Space with Lighting — Wall Mount, Deck Rail Lighting and Table Top Candles, Project by Archadeck

Lighting makes a style statement and sets a distinctive mood.  It provides safety and security after dark.

The right lighting is a key detail to make your deck, porch, pergola or other outdoor space a true extension of your home and landscape.

Deck Lighting for Safety and Aesthetics, Photo courtesy of Outdoor Lighting Perspectives

Deck Lighting for Safety and Aesthetics, Photo courtesy of Outdoor Lighting Perspectives

There are a lot of options out there, so mix-and-match the right kind of lights to illuminate your outdoor space – no matter the size — for maximum function and fashion.

Outdoor Space with Hanging Light Fixture, Project by Archadeck

Outdoor Space with Hanging Light Fixture, Project by Archadeck

Continue reading for a few more suggestions. Read the rest of this entry »

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Archadeck (636) 227-0800 weststcharles@archadeck.net

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