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Deck safety is important!

A carefree evening with friends and family can be ruined in a moment by a deck failure and sudden injury. So learn how to inspect your deck with a video and seven-point check-list to ensure your outdoor space is fit for entertaining this holiday weekend.

Deck Safety Checklist by Archadeck

Deck Safety Checklist by Archadeck

(Click the photo above to watch a video and read the BE SAFER, seven-point deck safety checklist.)

And go here for Archadeck’s Deck Safety Tip Sheet too!

Happy 4th of July from Archadeck!

Whether your deck design requires a step-or-two or a long staircase with a landing, building your stairs requires forethought, planning and oftentimes tricky construction calculations to get-it-right.

Deck Stair Designs by Archadeck, St. Louis Mo

Deck Stair Designs by Archadeck, St. Louis Mo

In short, deck stairs must be built precisely to meet local building codes for safety. And they need to look great too!

  • Your stairs shouldn’t be too tall or shallow and there’s no room for error.
  • With plenty of style options, building deck stairs can be complex so consider talking with a contractor.
Deck Steps with Guard Rail and Hand Rail, St. Louis Mo, by Archadeck

Deck Steps with Guard Rail and Hand Rail, St. Louis Mo, by Archadeck

Let’s begin by defining the three primary deck stair components:

  • Risers — what you walk on
  • Treads — the enclosed space between the steps
  • Stringers — the sloped boards that provide support under the stairs

Read the rest of this entry »

Do you sometimes wonder about deck safety?  Well, you probably should.  It’s a real issue.

According to NADRA (North American Deck and Rail Association) the number of failed and fallen decks has increased.  Why?  The reason is simple.

Deck Repair and Replacement Work Site in St. Louis Mo, photo by Archadeck

Deck Replacement Work Site in St. Louis Mo, photo by Archadeck

As decks across the U.S. have aged, proper maintenance and periodic inspections have sometimes been neglected or completely ignored. When those decks are packed-with-people during parties, prom photo-shoots or graduation events, a collapse can occur and cause serious injuries.

Or maybe the deck wasn’t built properly the first time.

A simple, seven-point inspection plan will help you spot trouble.  Use this acronym – BE SAFER (Boards, Every Connection, Structure, Attachment, Footings, Exists, Rails) for a DIY deck-check. Read the rest of this entry »

Flared Deck Stair Design, St. Louis Mo, Archadeck

Flared Deck Stairs by Archadeck, St. Louis

Just like deck railings, the stairs and steps for your deck are a major consideration in the design process.

Stairs should be attractive by blending smoothly into the deck space or by providing an elegant element of contrast to the space.

Nevertheless, deck stairs should also be functional and should ‘empty out’ into a logical area where people congregate and where traffic flows.

In the end, the lay of the land and your home’s architecture will greatly influence the necessary deck and stair design.

For example, a bi-directional staircase is often used to turn a corner so that steps will land on the ground in the perfect backyard spot — in the lawn or on a patio. Read the rest of this entry »

Trex Spiral Deck Stairs, photo by Trex

Trex Spiral Deck Stairs, photo by Trex

Home Channel News recently announced that Trex, a leading manufacturer in the decking industry, has officially introduced and is now offering a spiral deck stair collection in the Trex product-line.

Outdoor spiral deck stairs are a fantastic alternative to traditional deck stair design because spiral stairs are not only an attractive design element, but they are a functional space-saving feature for tight-spots.

“Offering sleek, yet sturdy, construction, Trex Spiral Stairs represent a perfect blend of form and function,” said Ron Kaplan, chairman, president and CEO of Trex. “This easy-to-install system provides homeowners with an attractive solution to their staircase needs, while offering a host of customizable features for one-of-a-kind outdoor spaces.”

According to Trex, the collection includes galvanized steel and aluminum stairs produced with a powder coating for several color options.  The stairs are also engineered for easy installation and a compatible ‘fit’ for existing Trex decking and railing products. Read the rest of this entry »

A well designed and implemented deck project incorporates the intended function of the outdoor structure alongside superb design techniques.

Sound complicated?  Well, let’s break it down.

Under Deck Room for Deck in St. Louis West County by Archadeck

Under Deck Room for Deck in St. Louis West County by Archadeck

An experienced deck contractor will take into account existing spaces — in their entirety, both inside and out – to develop the absolute best design-fit for your needs and for your budget.

A terrific example of thoughtful architecture is evident in custom, multilevel deck designs that ‘open-up’ both home and yard to an outdoor living space and to each other.

Key design features for a deck with several levels:

Multilevel Deck, Wide Stairs, Partial Railing, photo by TimberTech

Multilevel Deck, Wide Stairs, Partial Railing, photo by TimberTech

1.  Wide deck steps are desirable if the deck is designed at grade-level.  Broad steps are unrestricted and stylish, enhancing traffic flow to-and-from the deck.

One, two or three steps between the deck levels invite area definitions – a spot for sitting back, a spot for chatting or a spot for grilling and eating.

2.  If however, you have a two story home, staircases that move gracefully between deck levels are important.

With proper deck staircase design, the spaces will provide a flowing connection to the backyard without appearing fragmented or disjointed.  And without causing foot-traffic gridlock! Read the rest of this entry »


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