Nails or Screws...??

by Renato
(Montreal)

I'm in the process of getting ready to build my deck... I went to Home Depot and they prepared a basic design/plan to match my specs and they also estimated the materials that I needed including screws and nails.

My question/concern is the following; the order includes deck screws to fasten the deck boards to the joists but they included 3.5 in. galvanized nails for fastening the joists to each other as well as 1.5 in. galvanized nails to fasten the galvanized metail brackets to hang the joists.

Is it necessary to use nails or could I use screws in place of the 1.5 & 3.5 in. Gal. nails???

If yes, what type & size nails should I be using.

Thanks for any and all help you can give on this topic.

Regards,
Renato.

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Jul 15, 2008
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Ring nails should work
by: Editor - Rich Bergman

Ring nails are designed for this purpose and shouldn't pop up as the rings are designed to catch if you pull them out.

Otherwise screws are the better option.

Seems like you have solved the problem.

Jul 15, 2008
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Nails used for squeaks
by: Joan

I am having new flooring installed in my home
carpet in the bedrooms, vinyl in the kitchen
and oak hardwood flooring in the living, dining
room and hall area.

I have a lot of squeaks in the floor and have tried galvanized nails 2 1/2 in
nailing into the plywood sub floor through to
the joists.

This seems to work fine and stops the
squeaks. My question is will those type of nails
work back through the flooring over time.

Thank you

May 29, 2008
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Use a Flooring Screw Drill Gun
by: Editor - Rich Bergman

I would use 3.5" screws for the joists and 1.25" screws for the joist hangers. But try a square head (Robertson)screw instead of a star head as they are less likely to strip.

The simplest method to install that many screws is to use one of the automatic screw guns for this exact purpose. I use one. Its a drill like gun that uses a coil of wood screws and you can drive screws into the deck boards as fast as you can push down.

You will find this tool at any home improvement store. Mine was $99 and worth every penny.

May 29, 2008
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Nails or Screws...??
by: Renato

It's me again... thanks for the info. I realize taht it will cost more for the screws, what I'm more concerned about is nailing 1 thousand nails... I would rather pay the cost of the screws and use my power drill to screw (much less effort).

Could you recommend the type of screws that I should be using in place of the 1.5" and 3.5: galvanized nails.

Thks again.

Renato.

May 29, 2008
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Better to use Nails or Screws
by: Editor - Rich Bergman

Great question. Should you used nails or screws when building your deck. It is more important and beneficial to use screws for your deck boards then your joists.

You could use screws for the joists also but in my opinion it is overkill. You are using joist hangers as well for your joists so if you use a galvanized spiral 3.5" nail for your joists you should be just fine.

However, using screws for deck boards is even better than nails. You are not going to get accidental hammer marks on your deck boards and you are virtually assured of the deck boards never popping up. Nail pops can happen depending on the type of wood and nail.

Cedar has less warping and pulling power than pressure treated pine which can move a lot.

It costs more to use screws but I think over the life of your deck you will be glad you spent the extra $50 or $100.

Good luck.

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