Deck Building Tips For Homeowners

Deck Building Tips For Homeowners

 

TT-25998_Social_Design_DarkHickory-186_FB_1080x1080_v1The sun is out. The grass is green, and your outdoor space needs a lift. There is no better way to enjoy your summer yard than with a new custom deck. These deck-building tips will provide you with information that assists you in making critical decisions on your project.

We got together with the President of High Quality Contracting, Inc., Nick Wegner, for some great design and upgrading ideas, as well as tips on what to look for in products and deck building contractors.

“When considering a new custom deck, choosing a dependable deck building company is key. They will bring fresh ideas, as well as, they will know their products. “, says Nick. He goes on to say,” The choices with today’s builders and products within the market have become more advanced than years past. “

So, what are some vital deck-building tips?

#1) The Deck Builder Matters- 

Choosing the right contractor is the single most crucial aspect of any home deck building project. You need a company you can trust, with years of experience under their belt. They should be licensed and insured in your state, as well as the references to back up any claims of quality work. You should always check your local Better Business Bureau to find out the contractor’s reputation. Ask them for their licensing information and make sure they can pull permits. Whatever you do, do not hire a fly-by-night friend to do the job. Those projects usually end up costing more in the long run to repair or replace. 

#2) Choose Decking Building Material For Your Needs- 

Think about how you plan to use your deck? Will you often entertain? Is there a pool involved? What needs will a deck require in your climate? With the vast array of materials available, we have broken down a few of the best products available. 

  • Wood- Decking is one of the most popular choices. Natural timbers such as Cedar, Douglas Fir, Hemlock, and teak look fantastic and Southeastern Wisconsin deck builder- High Quality Contracting, Inc. example of outdoor kitchenstand up to Wisconsin elements. When choosing a wood deck, consider staining the underdeck as well. This will boost the life span of your deck by protecting it from the weather and bugs. It also upgrades the look of the deck. 
  • Composite decking is a material that is a mixture of wood fiber, plastic, and a binding agent. This combination creates a very long-lasting, durable deck.   
  • Stone is a natural, sturdy, and attractive option for deck building. It does not splinter or burn and does not need any special maintenance as a natural wood deck would require. Also, when it fades, the stone naturally looks more aesthetic. 
  • Concrete, known for its durability and long life, is returning as a homeowner favorite due to new modern methods. New concrete decking products allow for many eye-pleasing options, such as stamped concrete, which can mimic stone, brick, wood, and other materials.  

#3) Deck Building On A Solid Base-  

The base of your deck is what the entire structure stands on. A safe, long-lasting deck needs solid framing, proper footings, or concrete piers. Furthermore, the design for your deck should consider the earth’s surface, any slops, and the typical weather changes for your area. Incorporate these items into the design process to ensure the best possible base for your new deck. 

 

Southeastern Wisconsin deck builder- High Quality Contracting, Inc. example of lighting#4) Built-In Options-  

Depending on how you intend to use your new deck, it helps decide which built-in options you want to include in your design. If you enjoy entertaining, you may want to consider such items as an outdoor kitchen or an outdoor fireplace.  

Will you have furniture that has cushions and pillows? You may want to consider a built-in storage area. High Quality Contracting, Inc has installed built-in seating with storage spaces, sheds, or storage boxes.  

Accessories can be as straightforward or as elaborate as your tastes. Here are more accessory ideas: built-in coolers, built-in garden planters, a brick pizza oven, firepits, sunken seating, curved seating nooks, a mini library nook with built-in bookshelves that have glass doors on them, architectural shade structures, and built-in pet enclosures. 

#5) Deck Building Lighting Options- 

 Make your deck shine in the night, and provide a warm, inviting place for yourself and guests to enjoy an evening. By adding lighting to your deck, you’re extending the functionality of your investment. When considering what type of lighting to put on your deck, there are a few things to consider: 

  • Choose lighting that enhances the style of the deck. Don’t mix styles such as a modern light fixture style with a traditional deck style. 
  • Light vital areas such as steps, handrails, and doorways. 
  • Light pathways to guide users. 
  • Space out the lighting sources so that all the light is not focused in one place but creates an inviting atmosphere. 
  • Don’t try to light everything. You don’t want to take away from the experience of the night, making it as if you were indoors. 
  • Don’t skip on the outlets in case you want to add festive lighting or other plugins. 

Remember, a custom deck designed with your lifestyle and needs in mind will give you a space that you can enjoy for many years.

If you would like to speak to our custom deck experts, please call (414) 405- 7542 or use the form on our Contact Us page. A deck builder will contact you back as soon as possible.

Southeastern Wisconsin deck builder- High Quality Contracting, Inc. example of outdoor fireplace

 

Can the sun’s heat cause premature roof replacement?

Can the sun’s heat cause premature roof replacement?

asphalt roofing shingles and roofing repair by High Quality Contracting Inc. Roofing Contractor in Franklin, Wisconsin

 

Wisconsin winters can reach below zero temperatures, while our summers average in the mid-’80s. Snow and ice are brutal on your residential roof, but what about the summer heat? How does the heat affect your roof? Do you need a roof repair or roof replacement? We turned to our expert roofing team here at High Quality Contracting Inc. to find out.

The sun produces UV Rays. These rays are beating down on your home’s roof every day. When choosing the color of the shingles, consider the and reflective capabilities. Also, considering the reflective coating of the shingles as some coatings are better and last longer than others. Over time, the sun’s rays begin to fade the color of your shingles, which affects the ability to keep the inside of your home cool.

How hot can your roof get?

The standard asphalt shingle roof that protects most of southeastern Wisconsin’s homes can reach temperatures hovering 150°F plus during our hottest months. During the winter, the same roof will reach temperatures well below zero. In Wisconsin, we have times where we go from freezing to hot in a single week. This expanding and contracting of the materials in the shingles and wood can affect the integrity of your home’s roofing system. This process is called Thermal Shock.

Thermal Shock creates cracks, buckling, and discoloration over time. Due to this sudden rise and fall of temperatures, straining is especially hard on roofing systems older than a decade. As time goes on, home roofs become brittle. The wood and shingles crack, leaving openings for moisture and water to seep in and cause further damage.

Couple Thermal Shock with fierce storms that blow through our counties, homeowners have a recipe for roofing damage that may happen at any time. The key to preventing severe damage to the structure of your home is to stay on top of regular inspections of your roof and taking action to repair any damage found.

The steps to protect your investment are simple, yet many homeowners choose not to do them. These steps are:

1) Schedule an inspection.

Schedule an annual roofing inspection performed by a professional contractor. He/She will know where to look for any defects that may affect your home in the near future. The contractor should go on top of the roof and look for signs of wear, rust, buckling, missing shingles, holes, and damage. As well as an interior inspection to search for moisture and stains from leaks.

2) Clear the area to avoid roof replacement from damage.

Be sure that your roof is clear of any trees or branches that could fall during a storm. If a tree is dead or dying, take it down immediately. Trees are one of the biggest causes of roof damage in Wisconsin.

3) Inspect insulations help determine if a roof replacement is needed or repairs.

Take care of your attic by ensuring it is adequately insulated. You can check this by going into your attic in the middle of the day. Make sure all the lights are off, and then look for light shining through any cracks. Turn on the light and search for damp insulation or water stains. Look for discoloration in rafters, beams, and plywood. If you find any issues, consider calling a licensed, insured contractor like High Quality Contracting, Inc. to come to take a look.

worn old shingles on a roof show signs needing a roof replacement

Worn old shingles on a roof show signs needing a roof replacement.

4) How Old is Your Roof? 

If your roofing is older than a decade or of poor quality, you will want to make sure you have it inspected. Also, consider re-roofing with a higher-quality shingle and better quality underlayment.
Several manufacturers, such as GAF,  make terrific products for roofing systems that were not available even ten years ago. These products are more wind resistant, have excellent UV light resistance, a more formidable water barrier, and a longer life expectancy.

As the heat of Wisconsin’s summer sun beats down on your home, remember to do a few simple tasks to keep your investment and family safe from a damaged roof which will end in needing a roof replacement.  Scheduling an inspection to see if you need a new roof or if you can get by with some repairs is as easy as picking up the phone and calling High Quality Contracting, Inc.

High Quality Contracting Inc. is an accredited Wisconsin Better Business Bureau member with an A+ rating. We are members of the Milwaukee Chapter of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry and 12-time recipients of the Angie’s List Super Service Award.

We also offer special discounts to our servicemen and women.

Please contact your homeowners’ insurance to find out what, if any, discounts are available in the event that you replace your roof. Many homeowner policies offer substantial discounts (5%-30%) if your roof is under 5 years old. Depending on the product you choose, that discount can vary.

At High Quality Contracting, Inc., we offer craftsmanship that you can trust. Contact us today for your roofing inspection.