Just like the main structure of your house, your deck also needs to have a solid foundation to last long. The foundation for decks comes in the form of what’s known in the home improvement industry as footing. For strong and proper footings, you need to consider the soil, climate, slope, drainage and more. Sentry Exteriors, your trusted roofing contractor, discusses them here.
The consistency of soil varies, as well as its load-bearing ability. Loose soil, naturally, has the least load-bearing capacity. It needs larger footings than heavy clay or compacted soil. This is why local codes take local soil conditions into account. Because of this, make sure to contact the building department before you plan your deck.
Two kinds of loads are inherent in any structure: dead loads and live loads. The dead load of a deck is the weight of all its permanent elements. It includes posts, beams, framing, decking, planters, stairs and railings. Live loads, on the other hand, include transient items like snow, furniture and people.
Footings and other elements must support a total weight of 50 pounds per square foot. Consult Sentry Exteriors about the right footings for your deck. Just like other gutter companies, we can help you improve your decks and porches.
In cold climates, the soil freezes and thaws, causing it to expand and contract. If the posts are not well set, soil movement will move the posts and the deck structure. This will shift or crack portions of the deck and cause severe structural damage. Regions have different frost lines. Local codes specify the depth of these lines and how far below them you must set your footings. In warm climates, you can get by with a small footing.
All in all, as your prime home improvement and gutter guard company, Sentry Exteriors installs the best decks. We offer wood, composite and vinyl decks and screened porches and sunrooms. We can also add a roof overhang to your existing porch or deck. Our service area covers communities throughout Lynchburg, VA. Call us at (434) 333-7753 to get a free estimate.