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3 deck substructure frame material options to consider...

Extending your outdoor living space with a deck can be an exciting venture. Unfortunately, the excitement comes to some complicated decisions that must be made before you begin. Questions like these need answers:

• Should your deck be a DIY project or should you hire a professional?

• What is the budget for your deck project?

• What are the dimensions of your proposed deck frame design?

• What deck and frame material should you use?

Of all of these important issues, the decking frame construction impacts all of your other decisions. Framing correctly from the beginning means your deck will be easier to build and last longer. So let's discuss the three major types of deck framing and their pros and cons.

1. Traditional Timber deck frame construction:

While timber can appear to be a cheaper option than the alternative deck structure materials, using timber deck framing also means dealing with the imperfections of nature. Timber absorbs moisture like a sponge and when it dries out it's reluctant to stay in shape. Timber for decking subframes is extremely heavy when wet adding unnecessary effort to the job, especially if the area is wet or muddy to start with. Building with warped or twisted bearers and joists is difficult. Timber deck frames require a lot of nogging or blocking to ensure the joists do not roll over and also to keep them parallel. The joist and bearers need additional fastening, strapping and bracing to hold shape.

2. Steeldeck frame construction materials:

Steel deck frame construction. This is the least cost effective deck framing option. Steel joists and bearers can span longer distances than a wood deck frame, however at the expense of ease of construction. Steel deck frames are very heavy to handle and require anti-rust protection treatments applied to the components each time they are cut to avoid corrosion. Steel joist is also very time consuming to install decking boards.

3. Aluminium frame construction materials:

QwickBuild™ substructure deck frame system. This lightweight, marine-grade structural aluminum features the same long span and high load deck framework as steel, without the high price and much easier installation! Since this pre-fabricated deck frame is not affected by moisture or extreme temperatures, it offers superior durability and low maintenance compared to both timber and steel. And installation time is a snap because the number of pile or post supports is reduced by 30% and no screws or nails are needed for attaching deck boards to the aluminium joists. QwickBuild™ is supplied for all decking applications, residential and commercial in either pre-assembled deck frames or kitset or in loose components.

To learn more about outdoor deck construction and installation the fast way visit

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