The sunny season is nearly upon us again which means that people will soon be reuniting with friends and family who they haven’t seen for a while. One of the greatest joys of the summer is the opportunity to sit in the garden and socialise; a glass of Pimms in hand while the barbecue sizzles away is a summertime pleasure that we all look forward to.

This is one of the main reasons to think about adding a bit of decking to your garden. Decking provides a space where everybody can sit comfortably to enjoy their meal in the sunshine, or have a drink during a balmy evening. If you have been thinking about introducing some decking to your garden but do not want the expense of hiring somebody else to do it, then you might want to try it yourself. The following is a short guide to how to place decking successfully.

How it is installed

Here are some easy-to-follow tips on how to place decking securely:

  1. Have an idea in mind of how big you want the decking to be, what shape it will be, and how it will sit in relation to your house. If you are building on a sloped surface you will need to create a flat surface first.
  2. Consider the height of the decking; it needs to be in line with the door that leads to it. You don’t want to have to step down onto the decking nor do you want to have to step upwards onto it.
  3. Using pegs and string, measure out where you want the decking to actually go. Place the pegs in each corner, and attach them together using the string; this will work as a guide to where you put the decking and also gives you an idea of what the decking will look like.
  4. Clear the area of all grass, weeds, stones, or anything else obstructing the area.
  5. If you are lying decking over a section that was initially covered with grass you need to cover it with a weed-proof membrane beforehand and then put gravel over it; this prevents weeds from growing up through the decking.
  6. Cut all of the decking bearers to the necessary size and treat all the ends with preservative to prevent them from rotting.
  7. Lay out the forbearers which make up the outside of the frame; now you can see how large the area is going to be. Join them together at the corners by using 6” nails that are designed for the outdoors.
  8. Use a builder’s square to check that all the corners are at right angles and that the overall structure is square.
  9. Fit a baton brace on each of the corners to keep the structure in position. (This is essentially a bar across the corners the joins all of the sides together.)
  10. Mark the fixing points for your deck bearers at around 450mm on opposite sides of the frame then nail the deck bearers (or “joists”) into position.
  11. Check that the frame is level.
  12. Next, lay the decking boards on top of the frame and screw each one twice. There should be 4-6mm of space between each board.
  13. Cover the edges of the overall structure with vertical deck boards so that it looks neat
  14. Finish by treating the decking with a preservative so that it lasts for a long time.

If you own a decking business then this is probably the busiest time of year for you. At SJS Building Supplies we supply a huge selection of decking panels for you or your company. You may have read recently that there has been a shortage in wooden panels but not at our store so have a look at our range to decide which panels best suits you. As always, if you have any questions about any of our products, or you would like some advice regarding which products would be best for you; you can phone or email us for more information.