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Floating deck concept? - Click HERE for Original Thread

rtsen
Hey all,

has anyone built their deck using the floating deck concept. Basically, you distribute the weight over concrete pier which is all above ground.

http://www.deckplans.com/

I'm looking into building a deck this summer and i'm debating whether I should do the traditional concrete piles or the floating deck. Recommendations/comments welcome.

Thanks.
Moezer
A floating deck will be better due to the fact that u can adjust it easier then the concrete blocks, the concrete blocks will shift over time, and if its floating u can always fix them easier then the big heavy concrete blocks.
Also a floating deck is better depending on how high your going to make it then u can store items you don't need under it :D
scat19
Originally posted by Moezer
A floating deck will be better due to the fact that u can adjust it easier then the concrete blocks, the concrete blocks will shift over time, and if its floating u can always fix them easier then the big heavy concrete blocks.
Also a floating deck is better depending on how high your going to make it then u can store items you don't need under it :D



Do you even know what you're talking about? :rolleyes:

Some advice from someone who has been there....

Question number one to ask yourself is how secure (i.e. settled) is the ground you are going to put the deck on. frost heave aside, if the house was just built, the back fill from the house is probably still trying to find it's happy resting place, so putting anything on top of it will like end up a few inches lower in a few years. In which case, pour some piles if you must build now.

Question number 2 - any plans to put in a hot tub or gazebo later on? If so, pour the piles. Alot pf people make the mistake of trying to drop a hot tub onto a deck with standard footing with disastrous results. After all, water weighs a ton.

Beyond that, it should really just be a matter of personal preference. As long as the base is properly prepared (good base of gravel - 3/4 down works wonderfully), there is nothing wrong with using the pre-cast footings to support your deck. This is what I used, and it is holding up well. I have had to adjust one footing on occasion, but all you do is jack up the section temporarily, and add (or remove) material to the base to get back up (or down I suppose) to height.

Again, your conditions may vary. Some places have restrictions on the height of the deck that can exist without having piles (and rails). In other areas, the regulations can be pretty relaxed. I tend to over design, planning for a flood, hurricane and apocalypse to hit simultaneously. I've seen some decks that frighten the heck out of me and break so many of the recommend rules, that you expect a stiff wind to knock them over.

When in doubt, peek at what your neighbors have done. Nine of of ten leading dentists can't be wrong.

Moezer
Originally posted by scat19


Do you even know what you're talking about? :rolleyes:


yes i do :D i use to work construction and use to build decks as well built 3 of them :love: any ways ur not on the topic by saying that to me stay on the topic and avoid arguing for the guy who is building the deck i gave my opinion:angel: :angel:

AndrewMZ3
Anyone have any recommendations on someone to pour the piles?
rtsen
my deck is going to be 2 feet high but i'm not sure if the soil has settle yet. I bought the house last Oct, the foundation was done in 06, house completed in 07, previous owner put sod in Aug 08, so i'm not sure if the top soil has settled.

hey scat19, what thread did you get that post from? There's probably some good info in that thread.

Andrew, how deep are you going to go with your piles? is frost line 5-6 feet?
TKRIS
Dig a hole ~4' deep, put 4x4 in hole. Fill hole with water and cement mix, once dry, cut 4x4 post to proper height. It's not rocket science. Don't fuck around with pouring pilings and trying to attach your posts to those. That's stupid, and unless your deck is 8'+ above finished grade, completely unnecessary.

IMO, floating decks are typically stupid around here. There's a reason you don't see them in cold climates like this very often. Most places won't let you attache a floating deck to your house (as well they shouldn't). Your foundation walls go down below frost line (4'), so if you have a deck that's not anchored the same way, it's going to raise and fall with the ground through the freeze thaw cycle. Basically, your deck will be moving, and your house won't be, so if you attache them, the deck is always going to be trying to rip itself away from that anchor, and if you don't attach them, it's going to be shifting height relative to your house and constantly walking.

Floating decks are fine for an unattached, ground level deck. Anything that's going to be attached to another structure, or have stairs, you should be putting proper posts down.

It's not difficult. Takes about 15 minutes per hole to do the whole thing yourself. Borrow or rent or buy a half decent post hole digger (don't bother with a power one), some PRESSURE TREATED 4x4 posts, and some quick-set premix and you'll have them all in in an afternoon.

EDIT: Get yourself a good 3'-4' level to level your posts. I'd also suggest attaching your beams, then trimming the excess post afterwards with a reciprocating saw. This will ensure you don't cut a post too short due to finished ground grade.
rotten42
Originally posted by Moezer
A floating deck will be better due to the fact that u can adjust it easier then the concrete blocks, the concrete blocks will shift over time, and if its floating u can always fix them easier then the big heavy concrete blocks.
Also a floating deck is better depending on how high your going to make it then u can store items you don't need under it :D





bad....bad advice!.....be my guest but you'll be sorry.

Moezer
Originally posted by rotten42




bad....bad advice!.....be my guest but you'll be sorry.



bad....bad advice!:facepalm: i dont see u giving him any, and it also depends on how well u reinforce it :D

Moezer
Originally posted by rotten42




bad....bad advice!.....be my guest but you'll be sorry.



bad....bad advice!:facepalm: i dont see u giving him any, and it also depends on how well u reinforce it :D :facepalm: this post is not about how bad my advice is its about someone asking what is better and i gave my opinion :facepalm: :facepalm:

Moezer
did 2 posts XD
how i delete a post
TKRIS
Originally posted by Moezer


bad....bad advice!:facepalm: i dont see u giving him any, and it also depends on how well u reinforce it :D :facepalm: this post is not about how bad my advice is its about someone asking what is better and i gave my opinion :facepalm: :facepalm:



I gave him advice
Your "opinion" is demonstrably wrong, ill-advised, and makes virtually no sense whatesoever.

You can post your opinion, but when you don't know shit fuck all about what you're talking about, don't be surprised when people point out how wrong you are.
You seem to be under the impression that by tacking on a caveat like "well, that's just my opinion" it removes your stupidity from scrutiny and protects you from ridicule. As this thread has shown, it does not.

sxtasy
Originally posted by Moezer
A floating deck will be better due to the fact that u can adjust it easier then the concrete blocks, the concrete blocks will shift over time, and if its floating u can always fix them easier then the big heavy concrete blocks.
Also a floating deck is better depending on how high your going to make it then u can store items you don't need under it :D



Adjust easier than concrete blocks?

First of all concrete blocks are not typically even involved in wood frame decks. The purpose of building your foundation below frost line is to avoid the need for "adjustment"

It doesn't matter whether the deck is floating or attached you can still store stuff under it.


Originally posted by TKRIS
Dig a hole ~4' deep, put 4x4 in hole. Fill hole with water and cement mix, once dry, cut 4x4 post to proper height. It's not rocket science. Don't fuck around with pouring pilings and trying to attach your posts to those. That's stupid, and unless your deck is 8'+ above finished grade, completely unnecessary.

IMO, floating decks are typically stupid around here. There's a reason you don't see them in cold climates like this very often. Most places won't let you attache a floating deck to your house (as well they shouldn't). Your foundation walls go down below frost line (4'), so if you have a deck that's not anchored the same way, it's going to raise and fall with the ground through the freeze thaw cycle. Basically, your deck will be moving, and your house won't be, so if you attache them, the deck is always going to be trying to rip itself away from that anchor, and if you don't attach them, it's going to be shifting height relative to your house and constantly walking.

Floating decks are fine for an unattached, ground level deck. Anything that's going to be attached to another structure, or have stairs, you should be putting proper posts down.

It's not difficult. Takes about 15 minutes per hole to do the whole thing yourself. Borrow or rent or buy a half decent post hole digger (don't bother with a power one), some PRESSURE TREATED 4x4 posts, and some quick-set premix and you'll have them all in in an afternoon.

EDIT: Get yourself a good 3'-4' level to level your posts. I'd also suggest attaching your beams, then trimming the excess post afterwards with a reciprocating saw. This will ensure you don't cut a post too short due to finished ground grade.




:thumbsup: I agree, doesn't take much to dig a few holes. Grab a wheelbarrow, a shovel, some premix bagged concrete and your good to go. Even pouring piles are easy.

7thgenvic
Originally posted by Moezer
A floating deck will be better due to the fact that u can adjust it easier then the concrete blocks, the concrete blocks will shift over time, and if its floating u can always fix them easier then the big heavy concrete blocks.
Also a floating deck is better depending on how high your going to make it then u can store items you don't need under it :D



terrible way to build a deck. I have build decks and fences for 5 years for a foremen for a large landscaping company. This is the lazy man deck and I would rather have a proper deck built with a couple 8X8's then some crappy cement blocks.. GARBAGE

topmade
Did one with those shitty blocks with a buddy last year and it has sank a few inches since. Looks like absolute garbage. I didn't like the idea at all, but it was his house and he wanted to do it this way thinking it was only a couple of feet off the ground and should be fine.

Don't be lazy and cheap. Spend the little bit of extra money and time to do it right.
rotten42
Originally posted by Moezer


bad....bad advice!:facepalm: i dont see u giving him any, and it also depends on how well u reinforce it :D :facepalm: this post is not about how bad my advice is its about someone asking what is better and i gave my opinion :facepalm: :facepalm:




sometimes things are just too stupid to comment on. How long have you lived in Calgary anyway?

gatorade
lol, I have no idea about decks but its funny as hell to read you guys destroy his idea hopefully he changes his mind
rtsen
Thanks for the comments guys, i'll probably do the cement post method.
Heff
Originally posted by rtsen
Thanks for the comments guys, i'll probably do the cement post method.



You'll be happier with it.

Floating decks move. It just happens. And with different ground swell in your yard, you'll get some raised spots and some sunken spots. Even in a relatively small 12 x 15 deck you can get some serious tilt.

You "may" save a couple hundred by going with floating over fixed piling, but in the end you'll end up having to repair and rebuild your deck - or be unhappy with it's slope.

My choice would always be pilings to below frost line, durable pressure treated, cedar or man-made decking, and stainless/galvanized fasteners.

Build it once. Pay for it once. Enjoy it for its lifetime.

blueToy
rtsen , is this a new area ? If it is , just wait till you see a bobcat ( skid steer loader ) in your area and ask if they could drop a few holes for you for some cash . Depending on what area you are in , digging the holes shouldn't be too bad .
Depending on the size of the deck and how much weight you are going to put on supports , I'd go 4 foot minimum depth , with maybe just a couple of inches of 20mm gravel ( watered and packed ) for a base .
Also , don't forget to get you're utilities marked out , you know , the call-before you dig guys . They need 3-4 days notice , and will do it for free . Good insurance if something goes wrong , even if you think you know where eveything is .
barmanjay
Call the city

If its attached to the house, you will likely need a permit

over 2' will require a railing, including the stairs

I do reccommend concrete pilings with a bracket.

Digging a hole and just sinking the 4x4 in is a good idea too,.. but over time the 4x4 will rot and will need to be replaced.

it's easier to just unbolt from a bracket than dig up old concrete

typically that is how you would do fence posts

Before you get holes dug for the pilings, have enmax and atco come out and mark their undeground lines. don't think you would be happy (or alive) if you hit one of those.

If you just place cocrete pads and baseblocks for a "floating" deck, it will shift over time. Perfect for the temporary deck, but at 2' high that requires a railing,.. I would not suggest this route.

I'm' pretty sure there may be some guidelines to these types of decks, call the city and be sure.
Heff
http://www.calgary.ca/portal/server...d/Deck/Deck.htm


Deck

Development & Building Approvals / Land Use Planning & Policy

A Building Permit is required for the construction of a wood deck where the deck is more than 600 mm (approx 2 ft) above grade at any point. Depending on the height and size of the deck and the community in which you live, you may also require a Development Permit prior to obtaining your building permit.

For more information, please contact the Planning Services Support Centre at 403-268-5311.
Definition

A deck is:

*
an uncovered horizontal structure, with a surface height greater than 600 mm (approx 2 ft) above grade at any point, but no higher than the first storey floor level;
*
supported by any type of foundation system and may or may not be attached to the house; and
*
more than 2.2 square metres (approx 23.6 sq ft) in area.

Decks constructed of materials other than wood may require the signature and seal of a Professional Engineer licensed to practice in the province of Alberta.
Call Before You Dig!

Always remember to call Alberta One Call External Site. at 1-800-242-3447 before you dig. For more information on this service or to submit a locate request, visit their Web site.
Warning

It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the work being carried out does not contravene the requirements of restrictive covenants, caveats, or any other restrictions that are registered against the property.



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