Pivot Pad, Ignacio Salas-Humara ArchitectModern Deck, Austin
The wood deck cantilevers over a limestone bluff and overlooks Ranger Creek below and a private nature preserve beyond.
PHOTO: Ignacio Salas-Humara
What Houzz contributors are saying:
2. If you already have a deck, you may need to refinish it. Wood decks are great, but without proper maintenance, they can lose their appeal sooner than they should. It’s recommended that you refinish your wood deck every year or two. Here’s what to know.Full story: See how to refinish a wood deck
The RulesIt helps to know the parameters that regulate guards so we can artfully incorporate them into our designs. Your local codes may be more stringent, but as a general guideline the national code that regulates guards is the Life Safety Code (NFPA 101), and it prescribes that for any change in height between adjacent surfaces of 30 inches or greater, you’re required to use a guard. If your deck is more than 30 inches off the ground, chances are that you’ll need a guard at the edge for safety. Guards are different than handrails in two key respects: First, they’re taller, at 42 inches high; and second, they’re required to have intermediate members that must be spaced such that a 4-inch sphere can’t pass between them. This apparently equates to something smaller than what the average child can fit through, and it guards against dangerous falls. There are also other, more specific, load requirements (such as it must resist a 200-pound concentrated load), but these are our primary concerns.
Who to hire: This is an easy project that you can handle yourself. If you’d prefer not to spend a weekend working on your deck, you can hire a contractor who does deck restoration.Cost: That depends on the size of your deck, the level of soil and the type of wood. If you need to rent a power washer, that will likely set you back between $40 and $200, depending on how long it takes to clean your deck. The brushes, sealant, stain and other materials will probably cost about $150. If you hire a contractor, expect to spend between $500 and $700 for an average-size deck.Typical project length: After cleaning the deck, you’ll need to let it dry for 48 hours, so expect to spend about three days on this project including drying time.Best time to do this project: During a sunny, dry period in late spring.
The owners of this small modern home were so sensitive to its surroundings that the deck was built around a tree on the site. While the budget for the home was tight, the owners sprung for two Eames rockers — a worthy investment.