How to Build a Deck Around a Pool?

The sun is shining, you and your friends are jumping in the water – welcome to life on a beautiful pool deck. With the right deck, tools, and materials, you can easily build a pool deck. Above ground pool decks can enhance the comfort and luxury of your outdoor space. But you need to choose a beautiful and suitable deck to go with it so that the pool and the deck can blend perfectly. In this article, we’ll go over step-by-step how to build a deck around a pool.

How to build a deck around a pool?

Planning your deck

To determine the size of your deck, measure the diameter, length and height of your pool. Make a sketch of your deck, including dimensions and design. You may also consider purchasing a pre-made deck plan. It usually comes with construction drawings, lumber, hardware, foundation and decking that can make your planning easier.

Apply for a building permit

Depending on the area where the deck is being installed, you may need to obtain a permit to build the deck. Check the deck guidelines for your area to ensure compliance with codes for stairs, handrails, and other elements. Most areas require you to install a pool fence to ensure no one enters without supervision.

Mark the perimeter and post locations

Using stakes, outline the perimeter of the deck, adjusting the markers until they are level. And use paint to mark where you want to install the deck posts. The following precautions need to be followed during the marking process.

Interior posts near the pool should be 1 foot from the edge of the pool. 

When using 4×4 deck posts, the distance between posts should be 4 to 6 feet. 

Clearing the installation area

Dig out all brush and debris from the deck installation area. While your ground does not need to be perfectly level, the goal is to make it relatively flat. This plays an important role in the subsequent installation of the deck and pool. Use a shovel or leveling tool to flatten the ground.

Setting up your deck

Place the entire deck in the marked locations.The pier should be level in both directions. If necessary, adjust the ground with a shovel to level it. Place the deck posts into the square sockets of the deck block closest to the pool. Use a level and pencil to mark a line at a height that is flush with the edge of the pool.

Remove the deck posts and measure down from each line. Consider the top of the pool, joist height and deck thickness and 1/2 inch for extensions. Cut the deck posts to length and place them back on the concrete block.

Cutting and installing the joists

Cut 2×6 to create the perimeter joists for the deck. Place them next to the deck posts and make sure they are level (you may need help from others). Screw the joists into the heights you marked. At the corners of the joists, position the two pieces of decking at a 90-degree angle. Use the angle brackets to tighten them into place and make sure the joists are level. The joists on the deck should be spaced 16 inches apart on the deck (from the center of each joist). Consider adding block joists between the floor joists for additional stability.

Laying the deck

Place the deck on the joists with the top facing up. Use 1/4-inch or 3/8-inch spacers between each piece of decking to allow for drainage and air circulation. For the deck closest to the pool, cut the edges with a vertical saw. The gap between the pool and the deck should be 1/2 inch to allow for expansion and contraction of the deck. Secure each deck to the joists using deck screws. If the edge of the deck extends beyond the perimeter of the deck, use a chalk line to mark the location. Use a circular saw to trim the edges so they are flush with the perimeter joists.

Securing railing posts

Install 4×4 pre-cut railing posts every six to eight feet, lining up with where the floor joists and rim joist joists combine. This will allow you to properly secure the railing posts. Using a power screwdriver and screws, install the railing posts around the perimeter of the deck. Most pre-cut posts leave a notch at the bottom for a better fit around the edge of the deck.

Tips for maintaining your pool deck

You need to properly maintain and care for your pool deck for it to have a longer life.

Seal your deck every one to three years to ensure that it will stand up to the elements.

Thoroughly clean your deck at least once a year, including sweeping away debris, dirt, leaves, and snow. 

Move your deck furniture and other accessories regularly to avoid uneven discoloration. 

Secure any loose decking or screws as soon as you notice them. Replace badly damaged decks and screws promptly.

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