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A Handyman Helping Hand

Re: deck joists

Posted By: Joe
Sunday, 5 March 2000, at 8:13 p.m.

In Response To: deck joists (brian pos)

Though I am a contractor, your question is best addressed to a local architect and engineer.

Most building codes require a minimum bearing load (live load) for decks at 60lbs per sq foot.

Generally speaking, this means that 2x10s should do the job but 2x12s would be better.

But you have further concerns.

One is that the higher a supporting post, the weaker it becomes. In other words, a 4x4 treated pine post may be fine for a 4 foot high deck and be inadequate for a 10ft high deck.

Another is that the higher the deck, the more you must concern yourself with wind load, or, the ability of the deck to act like a wing and simply blow away in a strong wind.

These concerns may alter your choice of materials for posts as well as alter your method of securing posts to the deck.

Thes structural questions can and should be answered only by a qualified architect or engineer.

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