My deck is collapsing.

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dave1969

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So 16 years ago subsequent to purchasing my house I had a Trex deck built. Upon coming home from work the contractor told me when they were digging the holes for the footings they struck water, they had to pump out the water to pour the concrete - I expressed concern bur contractor was adamant there was nothing to worry about. Fast forward to now, I have been noticing a growing gap in front of the deck, I removed the lattice covering the underneath area to find the footings are crumbling, the posts are cracked and the support beam is tilted at about a 15 degree angle.

My question is: what can be done? Must this deck be dismantled or can it be repaired? I know trex weighs a lot more than wood - so I am concerned, I am also looking to put the house on the market soon and this will certainly be an issue upon inspection.

May I please ask how much I could be possibly looking at in terms of cost considering various remedies?

I live in North NJ

Thank you very much for any advice you can lend!
 

Steve123

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Some pictures would help.

I question if your footings are crumbling. Possibly some spalling at the upper surface due to freeze/thaw in the winter.

Wood is likely cheap pressure treated pine. It cracks, splits, warps, commonly, but is rarely a structural problem.

Leaning beam can be a problem. Is your deck floating (i.e not attached to the house) or attached to the house with a ledger board. If the ledger board is pulling away from the house, that is an extremely unsafe situation. How deep are the footings ?

Sixteen years --- that deck is approaching the end of its expected life anyways.
 

dave1969

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Leaning beam can be a problem. Is your deck float
Good morning, thank you for your reply.

I have attached a few photos.

The deck is attached to the house with a ledger board.

I am unsure how deep the footings are - I assume a "canned" footing was used.

Thank you!
 

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Steve123

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That's not a 15 degree lean on your beam, its about 5 degrees. Photo of where the beam is attached to the support post might be useful. Something might be moving. But it seams to be moving towards the house, which does not really sound like its pulling away. Could be the post is leaning, could be the beam is pulling off the post. Could be just that the PT pine is twisting like PT pine is apt to do.

Is there any evidence of the ledger board pulling away from the house ?

If not, then myself, I would not touch the deck, for resale purposes. At least the deck boards, being Trex, probably still look pretty good. Going to be hard to get your investment back if you rebuild it. The deck is not new --- that's par for the course when buying a used house. Neither is the roof, the furnace or the AC., right ?
 
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