Deck Building - Digging the Holes for the Footings and Piers
Digging holes is labor intensive. It’s as simple as that. And
in our example, the landscapers had already laid down the fabric and
stone so the digging had to be done after the fact.
Check For Any Underground Services
This is the first thing you must do. Be certain that you are not
going to cut a hydro line or any other services.
keep the site clean, we laid out a tarp and dumped the entire back
fill on to it during the digging phase.
This made it much easier to clean up when the back fill when back
into the hole around the pier. Then we just spread the stone back
over small amount of soil around the pier.
If you want to build your deck right and ensure that the deck will
not settle over time and to prevent any heaving from freeze and thaw
cycles, you should incorporate a footing below your pier.
This means you must build an area at the bottom of the hole that
is wider than the diameter of the pier. This spreads out the weight
of the deck structure. It can also prevent heaving if you dig the
hole deep enough.
Tips For Better Footings
Dig the bottom of the hole wider than the opening. Think of creating a
cavity in the ground similar to an upside down mushroom. The concrete will
fill the void and act like a footing and the shape will make it harder to
Create a makeshift from out of 2x4 scraps and fill it with concrete before
you pour the piers.
Dig the hole wide enough from top to bottom and use a pre-formed footing.
Then you can pour the footing and the pier in one step. This is an excellent
method. Learn more about this method.
Setting The Post Anchors Into The Cement
the cement is still wet, set whatever style of post anchor you are going
to use into the cement at the center of the pier and hopefully in line with
where you envision the beam to run.
This should be done as accurately as possible.
our example we used a post anchor that required drilling a pin hole into
the hardened concrete and then attaching the bracket to the protruding bolt.
OK, now that your footings and piers are poured you can move to the next
phase of the deck building process.
Previous: Locating the Footings Next: Connecting The Ledger Board