Tag Archives: Cincinnati OH custom decks

Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio discusses why plastic deck coatings are not the answer to your decking woes

Deck with plastic laminate coating for article

Deck with plastic laminate coating.

In our line of business we have seen many deck owners place their hopes of restoring their aged or worn wooden deck into products that usually only offer false promises. Case in point are the “paint on” plastic deck coatings you may have seen on TV or noticed in the “big box” home improvement stores. Many retailers have been stocking products in the paint section that appear to put a thick coating on deck boards, giving them the appearance of synthetic decking. These products claim to offer superior protection for the wood and to eliminate splinters, nail-holes and minor cracks with ease of application touting a homeowner can apply the product over the course of a weekend.

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We experienced the pitfalls of plastic coatings first-hand recently as we met with a homeowner in regards to redecking his backyard deck after having a bad experience with one of these products. During the consultation the homeowner was quick to point out the surface area reached a temperature hot enough to melt the bottoms of his shoes leaving an imprint of the sole itself within the surface. This, along with other factors, led to consideration of redecking the space.

Although each individual case is different, our experience with “fix all” products such as these is anything but positive. These products only serve as a short-term solution to a long-term problem. Many are made up of epoxy-style coverings that appear to be smooth, flawless and cool to the touch when exposed to the sun but in reality can come out rough and retain heat on structures that have a southern exposure.

Peeling_Blue_PaintIn addition to the many shortfalls these products have, they also require frequent and costly reapplication in most scenarios. With wooden decking, as with any of the effects of sun and water on horizontal surfaces application over rotten wood, damp wood will likely cause failures of the coatings. Other inconsistencies that must also be addressed are tight spacing of existing deck boards and reduced drainage capabilities. The circumference of these coatings will make tight spacing worse, and the area between your decking boards must be cleaned out regularly or face side rot. Flashing issues at the ledger are also a concern as is lack of proper waterproofing over joist tops.

Old and tired deck

Old and tired deck

The possibility of success, if any, of using these “paint-on” products lies within the surface preparation itself. Wood needs to be cleaned and free of any debris, oils or grease (this includes barbecue sauce). Prerequisites also include replacement of any loose nails. Manufacturers of the product even recommend your existing deck be screwed down to avoid the chances of any nails working up through the new finish. We are quick to point out these products should not serve as a “fix” for rotting wood or a surface in very bad condition as many deck owners may assume. These products serve as an alternative to conventional sealers or stain, not as a decking repair system.

Oakwood Ohio rooftop deck

Oakwood,OH, rooftop redecked by Archadeck.

Redecking an aging or failing deck through a quality deck contractor is the only real solution for invasive decking problems. Our diverse portfolio of decking materials includes quality wooden choices as well as the highest quality synthetic options on the market.

Cumaru tropical hardwood custom designed deck with Deckorator aluminum pickets in an Ipe rail, floating benches, and multi-levels in Centerville Ohio outside Dayton Ohio

Cumaru tropical hardwood custom designed deck an Ipe rail in Centerville, OH.

We have many redecking options available to accommodate your lifestyle and budget. Archadeck of West Central and Soutwest Ohio is here to help you make an informed decision about which material is the best suited for your outdoor space needs. Our knowledge and experience working with wood and synthetics over the years can ensure an outdoor living space that not only meets but exceeds your expectations. Contact us today to learn more (937) 848-7040 or (513) 897-2040, Email:wcohio@archadeck.net.

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

When it comes to the size of your deck is bigger really better?

This deck in Cincinnati  is full of all the comforts of home.

This deck in Cincinnati, OH is filled with all the comforts of home!

You are probably familiar with the old saying “bigger is better”, right? As Americans, we generally assume this old saying rings true — hence our affinity for bigger cars, houses and yes, super size fries. One of the biggest trends in deck design is their increase in size over recent years. However, this increase is not for some of the reasons that may first come to mind: for example to show social status or to facilitate a larger family unit. The reasoning behind building bigger decks is simple. It is because homeowners crave a transference of the comforts and function they have in their interior living space, outdoors.

Multi-level pressure treated wood custom designed deck with a dedicated dining area in Greene county Bellbrook Ohio

Multi-level pressure treated wood custom designed deck with a dedicated dining area in Bellbrook, Ohio.

A better way to gauge the benefits of choosing to go larger when designing your ideal deck space is to look at it this way: ” in most cases, inside your home, you have a dining room, kitchen, living room and family room. Homeowners are requesting these same spaces be designed into their deck, with areas for dining, a sitting or socializing area, and of course a cooking area. “A recent article published by Remodeling Magazine featuring input from owner of Archadeck of West Central and SW Ohio Tim Stephens, points out that “the 200-square foot deck in increasingly looking like a relic of the past as more homeowners push for more outdoor living space, and remodelers and builders are lining up to accommodate them.”

Designated dining area on this deck in Cincinnati, OH.

Designated dining area on this deck in Cincinnati, OH.

A large-scale deck design that encompasses the feel of an “outdoor living room” does take longer to plan, design and build as compared to the “typical” decks of the past. However, the benefits and extended function a larger, well-planned deck provide are worth the additional time they take to complete. Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio custom designs each portion of our decks to cater to the individual function our customers seek. We have built several decks right here in the Dayton and Cincinnati area that measure 1,500 square foot of outdoor living space, or more.  In comparison, spatially, these decks speak to the size of what could encompass the space of a small home! To get the most out of your deck, no matter what size you have in mind, efficient and even clever use of space is very important.

Here are 10 ideas courtesy of Remodeling Magazine to ensure the best use of space when planning for your dream deck:

#1) Think in layers – Not so long ago, decks both large and small used to be flat, square, single-surface spaces. But the larger the deck, the more it calls for curves, multiple levels, staircases, built-in seating, and railings.

#2) Capture the curves –  Flexible composite decking allows for accentuation of the curves within a deck design and is a favorite among deck builders who are partial to curved surfaces, sidewalks, and staircases, which can create an eye-catching segue between two levels of the deck.

This deck in Springborough, OH features an interior and exterior curved radius bench.

This deck in Springborough, OH features an interior and exterior curved radius bench.

#3) Move the eye along – Add a focal point or two to a large, empty span of deck by building a planter or fire pit in the middle and lining the perimeter with built-in seating.

#4) Create drama – Accentuate curves, railings and fascia boards with a contrasting color to create a frame around the deck floor. Incorporate inset designs, like diamond shapes in alternate colors, to create something unique for each homeowner. And don’t be shy about mixing materials on a big deck: faux stone columns, a metal roof, or a granite countertop on a built-in food preparation area will make the outdoor room look more upscale and custom-designed.

Curved Timber Tech composite deck with style! Located in Washington Twp outside Dayton Ohio

This deck replaces an aging wood deck with a low maintenance TimberTech deck with graceful eased radius corners, floating benches with Deckorators faux stone columns and contrasting deck inset.

#5) Proportions matter – An 1,800-square-foot deck on the back of a 2,000-square-foot home is probably too big to “go” with that house. Size up within reason.

#6) Add some shade – A homeowner who springs for a 600-square-foot-plus deck is going to want to use it as often as possible. A pergola, awning, canopy, or roof over the deck will allow the client to cook, entertain, or relax outdoors even on hot, sunny days or during rain showers. Any shade structure should be as low-maintenance as the deck itself.

Custom vinyl pergola in Springvalley OH with fixed louvers and interlocking slats

Custom vinyl pergola in Springvalley, OH with fixed louvers and interlocking slats for optimum shade.

#7) Prepare homeowner/clients for a possible long wait –  It takes a long time to build a big deck. Especially if the outdoor room will be home to electric and gas appliances, the job will include an electrician, a plumber, and the local building inspector. If the deck includes multiple tiers, the builder might need to consult with an engineer or architect.

#8) Consider the view –  If the upper tier of a two-story deck is right over the lower one, take care with the placement of the posts so they’re not too close to doors and windows, where they can block the homeowner’s view and path to the yard. Also, build in an under-deck gutter to catch rain that falls on the upper deck so it won’t soak the deck’s lower level and its inhabitants.

 #9) Leave enough room –  Even a big deck can run out of room if the design includes a hot tub. A typical 7-by-7-foot spa takes up at least a 10-by-10-foot space so there’s enough room around it for a railing, a privacy screen or a path for bathers and maintenance techs to walk around it.

Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio

Let us design and build a custom deck you can enjoy day into night!

#10) Make it useful –  Include heat and light so the owners can use their deck after dark and during at least three seasons. Popular options: built-in fireplaces and fire pits and ceiling-mounted heaters. You’ll have plenty of room for them.

So, to answer the question “is a bigger deck better”, it all depends on your individual needs and personal tastes. If you are looking for a deck that delivers layers of extended function, or a deck with that outdoor room feel — then, most definitely bigger is better!

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

If you have an existing deck that begs for elaboration, or are poised to pursue your outdoor living vision from scratch, we can help! Our award-wining custom deck designs make the outdoors truly worth loving, and living! Contact Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio today to learn more at (513) 897 – 2040 or (937) 848-7040. You can also email us at westcentralohio@archadeck.net 

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true.”

Please peruse our deck photo galleries located on our website, including our composite and PVC deck photo gallery and our hardwood deck photo gallery for more ideas.