In deck building footing and pier placement is crucial to the entire
A deck requires certain minimum strength properties and so it’s
essential to have enough support posts to keep the deck from collapsing
or sinking into the soil.
But excavating for footings and piers and pouring concrete is one
of the most labor intensive parts of the deck building process.
Draw the Deck Shape on Paper
Draw out the shape of your deck on some graph paper to get a visual image
of its size and proportions. Start from the point of view of trying to use
the least supporting posts possible so that labor and materials can be minimized.
There are some very helpful tables for beam
spans between posts that can assist you as you layout your deck plan
Remember that joists must always run parallel to beams.
In our example we ran one beam across the front of the deck and then ran
another beam 90 degrees directly back to the house to support a cantilevered
section of the deck. This design required only two footings and piers for
the front beam and only one footing for the last support post near the house.