Do you own a deck? The information in this article applies to every home owner with a deck in their outdoor living space. Whether you use your deck frequently or barely at all, there is a safety concern that we are all responsible for addressing. Here is helpful information we all need to know about deck safety .
Why are Inspections Important?
First, we should think about the nature of a deck. Decks are outdoor structures. This means they are exposed to nature and weather elements all year long. Elevated decks have less support than concrete based structures like your home. All decks, composite and wooden, start with a wooden foundation. Wood moves over time with climate and moisture (see why wood moves). Shift and changes in the structure cause weaknesses over time. With so many decks collapsing every year, your deck presents a danger if not properly inspected. Yearly inspections ensure the structure is in safe working condition. Make sure to have an inspection done every year for the safety of your family and guests.
My Deck was Built Strong
You may be thinking, I hired a professional builder who designed a solid deck. However, just because your deck was built strong, doesn’t mean you can skip the inspections. Even sturdy and well built decks require annual evaluation. Unexpected damage occurs over time that even the best builder cannot prepare for. All wood has a limited lifespan.
What Is a Deck Safety Inspection?
A deck safety inspection is an important annual service every deck owner needs to schedule. During an inspection, a qualified construction expert evaluates the entire structure for safety. They check the foundation, ledger, footings, railings, steps, and deck boards. The inspection takes about a half hour, at which point the inspector carefully checks the structure for points of weakness.
How do I Schedule an Inspection?
Research deck safety inspections in your area. This is a specialized service and may be difficult to find. You want a qualified individual who knows what to look for on decks. The right person will have combined knowledge of deck building and code regulations. For the Maryland, Northern Virginia and DC areas, Deck Ready offers annual deck inspections with a professional deck expert.