Height of deck?

Discussion in 'Decks & Patios' started by swimmer_spe, Apr 29, 2019.

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  1. Apr 29, 2019 #1

    swimmer_spe

    swimmer_spe

    swimmer_spe

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    I plan to build a deck , but i want to make it as low to the ground as practical. Legally, I can go a max of 23 inches before a permit is needed.

    So, using the concrete deck blocks and proper wood, what would the lowest finished height be?
     
  2. Apr 29, 2019 #2

    billshack

    billshack

    billshack

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    i would ask your local municipality, when is a permit required for a deck, should you build it without a permit and a permit is required they could demand removal.
     
  3. Apr 29, 2019 #3

    Snoonyb

    Snoonyb

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    Deck blocks are available in different configurations, so which are you intending on using?

    Will the deck be free standing , or attached?

    Will the deck blocks be supported by a footing?

    How large is the deck and what type of lumber?
     
  4. Apr 29, 2019 #4

    Sparky617

    Sparky617

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    If attached, you'll need footers below your frost line (if any).
     
  5. Apr 29, 2019 #5

    bud16415

    bud16415

    bud16415

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    My deck I built is free standing and I used the concrete deck blocks as feet. I dug down below the turf so that only an inch or two was sticking out of the ground. I used a hand plate compactor to tamp the bottom of the hole flat. The deck is free to lift up and down with any frost but with the feet buried there is no side to side movement.


    I set 12 posts 4x4 and then made 3 beams out of (2) 2x8 each, then set the floor joists 90 degrees to the beams on 16” centers. Then 5/4 PT flooring. I did it this way as all the material was reclaimed and free. No joist hangers were used and the whole thing assembled with deck screws and bolts.


    If you want to use hangers there would be no reason to make it a double layer construction and the whole thing could be as low as 2x10 plus the 5/4 decking with what ever air space you want below it. I wanted a crawl space below mine as I have a 6000 lbs hot tub sitting on it and I need access for the electrical below.


    Most people make the height so there is one step up from the deck to the house. I wanted mine flush but because I have an out-swing door and fear of some frost lift I made it an inch lower. It is also an inch away from the siding on the house. Around here a permit is not required if the deck is not connected to the house and is free standing. Technically I could pick it up and move it.


    It has survived 5 winters –30f and a giant tree crashing on top of it so far.

    IMG-8352.JPG
     
  6. Apr 29, 2019 #6

    swimmer_spe

    swimmer_spe

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    OP here.
    It will be freestanding.
    I have checked and anything under 2 feet high does not need a permit.
    I am not putting a footing in.
    I'd rather dig as shallow as I can and fill with sand/gravel.

    I am trying to figure out how high it will be as there is already a deck but I would need to shorten the stairs.
     
  7. Apr 29, 2019 #7

    bud16415

    bud16415

    bud16415

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    Well the span between these pre made footing blocks determines the size lumber. So tell us the size deck and what height would be perfect and we can go from there. The pre-cast tapered blocks I bought had a 4x4 square hole in the center top and then cross slots that would take a 2x and then a drain hole down the middle. They might have been 10” tall and I dug down 6-8” to get to solid compacted ground. That’s pretty easy digging.


    Mine is on a slope of about a foot or so and I adjusted the length of each post to get to level. They are pretty cheap so if you want a super low deck just space then closer and use smaller 2x’s. It is nice to have no ground contact even with it being PT.
     
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