Framing the Deck
After mason Mark McCullough and his crew dug out new footings that meet code, the team gets to work rebuilding the deck using donated lumber from Sterritt Lumber.
Host Kevin O’Connor, general contractor Tom Silva, carpenter Nathan Gilbert, finish carpenter Bill Gilbert start by attaching a new ledger board to the house, and installing pressure treated 2×8 for the frame, fastening everything together with framing nails and structural screws.
Working on the Stairs
While the team is working on the deck, Tom starts cutting risers from 2×12 lumber. He chooses pressure treated 2x12s so that there is enough material left after cutting out the rise and run to avoid bouncing or wobbling. He then marks the rise and run so they meet code before cutting them out with a circular saw.
Cutting the Posts
With the deck’s outer box framed and properly pitched away from the home, the team is able to install posts. They measure and cut posts to the exact height they need to reach from the footings to the underside of the framing. They attach them using hanger nails.
Working Around the Mechanicals
The deck has a split air conditioning unit underneath it, and many of the wires and line sets running into the house pass through the deck’s new lower location. In order to deal with this, the crew builds headers around the manifold and hangs joists from the header, creating a box around the mechanicals.
After the joists are installed, the team doubles back and installs joist hangers for additional support and code compliance. They then install horizontal blocks, or bridging, between the joists to add strength and stability.
Installing Some Privacy Screening
The side of the lot wasn’t hidden from the street, so landscape contractor Jenn Nawada wanted to screen it off with a natural barrier. With the help of Kevin, the two bring a small collection of arborvitaes over to their locations and position them in place. This particular species, the Thuja Plicata Green Giant, will grow tall and fast, interweaving with each other to make a nice screen for privacy.
Planting the Trees
First, Jenn and Kevin set to work digging holes for the arborvitaes. Each hole needs to be twice as wide as the root ball and just as deep as the root ball is tall. Then, because these particular plants were rootbound, they tease the roots loose before placing them in the ground.
Fertilizing and Watering
These plants need a jump start. After backfilling the holes around the roots, Jenn broadcasts starter fertilizer on top of the soil. Then she and Kevin water them in with a garden hose, helping them to establish themselves quickly in their new soil.