Outdoor living space has become the new Man Cave. Homeowners are looking to make the outside function like the inside and the deck business is booming as a result. As with any construction job, the faster you can finish, the more jobs you can take on. But we are firm advocates of not sacrificing quality for the sake of quantity. Here are some tips to speed up your deck construction without sacrificing quality workmanship.
Skip the Spacers
It is scientifically proven that symmetry is pleasing to the eye and this is especially true when building a deck. When there’s inconsistency in the spaces between deck boards, the human eye will pick up on it and you can expect a call back. While spacers are a great way to address this, we have a better one. The InvisiDeck® Hidden SCRAIL® System includes the self-gapping I-CLP Clip which spaces the boards via deck board grooves, while hiding the fasteners below the surface. Not only do you get perfectly spaced boards, but no fasteners to rust and snag. You get even spacing and a smooth surface.
Get Comfortable with Composite
Humans have been building with wood for over 10,000 years. It’s readily available, affordable, durable, and generally easy to work with. But, it’s not without drawbacks. It can warp, rot, or have a knot right when you need to put a fastener. It also needs to be treated with intense chemicals that can be hazardous and the timber industry as a whole can have some pretty significant negative environmental impacts. But composite is the future. It not only allows us to reuse and recycle materials, it also offers greater control in consistency, color, and durability in the end product. Eliminating material defects, like bowed boards, is going to be a boom to your productivity, and since composite lasts, you greatly reduce call backs as well.
Clean Up Loose Ends
Some builders like to cut their deck boards to length as they go. As they go, each piece looks as it will at the end. But, when you get a haircut, do they do it a strand at a time? Never! That would be ludicrous. Pros cut the first two or three to length—some carpenters leave 1/4-in. overhang—then run the remaining deck boards long. Once they’re all installed, snap a line from the first board to the last and then cut all the boards at once with a circular saw.
Use a Faster Fastener
Trying to save money with low-quality screws is one of the biggest mistakes you can make when building a deck. Low-quality screws will corrode, discoloring your deck and shortening its life, particularly with pressure-treated wood. Even if your decking is not pressure-treated, it will be attached to pressure-treated beams and joists. We may be bias here but using a pneumatic tool with InvisiDeck® SCRAIL® fasteners is a great way to speed up your deck construction. You not only get the benefit of quick installation with easy adjustments, your fasteners are coated with FasCoat®, a corrosion-resistant finish developed by the BECK Faster Group®.
With the right tools, fasteners, and know-how, your deck builds will go faster, and your finished product will look great – even lines, smooth deck boards, and built to last.