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 Post subject: Lower Decking Advice
PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 12:47 pm 
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Hi guys i'm looking to put a ground level decking in the back garden and need advice on the base.
Can I just put the base joists straight onto pea shingle or should I build concrete pads for the base to rest on? As i get some people saying that straight onto pea shingle would be enough but then others who say that it should be on concrete pads. But then when it rains wouldn't the water collect on the concrete pads and then the base joists are then sitting in water and then might possibly rot?? :help: :dunno:
I know to put a slight slope on the actual base of say 1:100 so that water runs off the boards but i'm confused on the base please guys any tips etc would be greatly appreciated. :help: :salute:


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 Post subject: Re: Lower Decking Advice
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:41 am 
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putting it on padstones (or even bits of paving slabs) will allow better airflow to the joists. Better airflow = less rot.

you can lap damp proof material over the pads.

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 Post subject: Re: Lower Decking Advice
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 9:49 am 
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I dig out two and a half feet holes using a post digger. Then I fill six inches of the hole with gravel. Pound in the gravel tightly and then set my posts in with postcrete. The gravel helps with drainage. Maybe overkill but it's what I was shown years ago.


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 Post subject: Re: Lower Decking Advice
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 11:29 am 
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I prefer support pads or posts too, assuming that you have a suitably strong deck frame to bridge them. Mostly for reasons of air and moisture already mentioned, plus I like to tie the thing down where it is wanted. If it were a long term investment or in a boggy area, I would even consider using concrete posts or masonry piles/pillars.

Unless you are laying gravel anyway (say for weed control) then for me, digging out, levelling and compacting the whole area in gravel is not necessarily easier; certainly not lighter work.

Though that said, for structures that don't have the strength to span support points (maybe for cheapness, or a very low profile), laying on an even gravel surface may be needed. I would prefer something much more angular than pea shingle though; the rounded pebbles don't interlock well and are hard to compact down into a stable base.

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 Post subject: Re: Lower Decking Advice
PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:52 am 
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thanks for the reply guys, so are you saying that laying directly onto gravel/pea shingle will not be good enough for drainage but onto pads and allow air flow? is this correct? :thumbright:


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 Post subject: Re: Lower Decking Advice
PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 5:09 pm 
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bgatty68 wrote:
thanks for the reply guys, so are you saying that laying directly onto gravel/pea shingle will not be good enough for drainage but onto pads and allow air flow? is this correct? :thumbright:


Yes. Distance between the padstones will be dependent on the joist sizes.

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