3 Tips for the DIY Deck Builder

Spring is right around the corner here in the Northeast. This is the time of year when lots of well meaning husbands, will attempt to build the deck that their wives have been asking for. As a fellow DIYer who routinely finds himself in over his head with various projects, my hope is to save you from making a big mistake that will haunt you later. Even if you are doing the work yourself, a deck is still an expensive project. Especially if you are using composite or vinyl materials instead of the traditional wood. So by taking a little extra time up front, hopefully we can extend the life of the deck.

Using Your Deck for Fall Parties

If you live in the Northeast like we do, the days are getting shorter and the nights are getting cooler. But we want to see you get as much use out of your deck as possible, so we have a few cost- effective ways you can extend the deck season.

  1. Add some lighting. Buy a few shepherd's hooks that are designed to clamp onto deck railing. They are available in different sizes, some of them extend 3’-4’ above the railing. Then buy a few light strings and run them from your house out to the shepherd’s hooks on the front railing. The light strings with about 1” round bulbs are the best way to go, but Christmas light strings will work great as well. You will probably want to order these things online this time of year, most stores will only stock them in the spring

5 Reasons Why You Should Redo Your Deck In Fall/Winter

If your current deck needs a facelift, if you’re tired of pulling splinters from your kid’s feet, or worrying about them falling off the deck due to unsafe railings, we can help. If you are happy with the size and shape of your deck, and it is less than 15 years old, we should be able to “Redeck” it. What we call “Redecking”, is basically removing all the old floorboards, railings and steps, replacing them with new, low-maintenance products. This is a great, cost effective and low impact way to upgrade your outdoor space.

Creating an Outdoor Living Space Under Your Deck

Lots of times the area under a second story deck can be at best an awkward, unused area and at worst an eyesore. The grass doesn’t grow properly and it is always kind of wet and muddy. This can easily be turned into a great outdoor living space. There are several kinds of “roofing”, that can be installed under the deck framing to use the deck as a roof, and keep the area dry. From there you can add a patio, retaining walls, privacy screens, lights, ceiling fans, etc. to transform the space into an extension of your basement. You can even frame it in and add screens for a 3- season type room.

What color should my new deck be?

There are so many decisions to make when you are designing your new deck. What type of railings, where to put the steps, wood or synthetic materials, etc. If you end up choosing wood decking that needs stained or synthetic decking, I would argue that the color of the deck floor is one of the most important decisions in the whole process. It can impact how much time you spend enjoying the deck, how much time you spend cleaning it, and have a big impact on how much return you get on your investment.While dark colored deck boards certainly make a better looking deck, there are a few things to consider before spending your hard earned money on a deck that should last for decades.

Questions to Ask Your Potential Deck Builder

As a homeowner myself, I’ve had to hire a few contractors for home improvement projects. I know the feeling of trying to decipher fact from sales pitch, and looking over competing quotes to decide which is the best option. In my limited experience, I have found that asking lots of questions is the best way to help me make a good decision. I have had a few projects done that didn’t turn out as I had hoped, and it was always because I didn’t ask the right questions before the project started.

Are Decks a Good Investment?

With all the economic uncertainty that surrounds us today, we are all looking to spend our money as smart as possible. And most of us are looking to increase the value and appeal of our property, while also raising our quality of life.  So where do decks rank on the list of smart and appealing home improvement projects?

Our Newest Railing Option

If you would like to give your deck a modern feel, or you want something different to set it apart from the others in your neighborhood, cable railing is just what you need. While this railing has been popular in certain circles for a long time, it’s popularity is exploding nationwide. A huge benefit to the cable railing is that you won’t have you view blocked off like you do with most traditional deck railings. They also give the deck a much more open feel, which helps the deck seem larger than it really is.

Outdoor Kitchens

As the popularity of outdoor living continues to grow, we are getting more and more requests for outdoor kitchens and fireplaces to go on our decks. Being avid grillers who love to entertain outdoors ourselves, we are very excited to assist you in creating your ideal outdoor living space. We have done a few small projects on our own over the past year or so. But given the complex and specialized nature of these projects, we feel like we need some outside help. So we are excited to partner with the guys at Lanchester Grill & Hearth. They are also a locally owned, Lancaster County business, that reflects our work ethic, integrity, and high standard of quality.