Installing a composite decking with hidden fasteners can give your deck a sleek and polished appearance. Not only does it offer a seamless, clean look, but it also reduces the risk of tripping and stubbing your foot on a protruding screw or nail. If you want to learn how to install composite decking with hidden fasteners, here's what you need to know.
Choosing Your Decking Material
The first step in building a composite deck is selecting the appropriate decking material. Composite decking typically comes in a variety of colors, textures, and sizes. The composite decking material you choose should reflect your design preferences, budget, and the design of your outdoor space.
Some composite decking brands also offer hidden fasteners that are specifically designed to work with their brand of decking. These fasteners are often more expensive than standard hidden fasteners, but they are easily integrated with the unique design of their decking material.
Gathering Your Tools and Materials
Before you start your project, make sure you have all the necessary tools and materials. Here's what you'll need:
- Composite decking and hidden fasteners
- Measuring tape
- Chalk line
- Circular saw or miter saw with a fine-tooth blade
- Drill/driver and bits
- Hammer or rubber mallet
- 1/4-inch spacers
- Composite deck screws
- Safety goggles, ear plugs, and gloves
Preparing Your Decking Surface
If you're replacing an existing deck, remove the old decking material and inspect the underlying structure for defects or damage. Ensure the frame is secured to the ground or home's structure and that no joists are more than 16 inches apart.
For new construction, make sure your frame is level and square before starting your decking installation.
To prep the decking surface, measure and mark the decking area, snap a chalk line, and remove any obstacles in the way. Ensure you're working on a clean and dry surface.
Installing the Decking Boards
To start installing the decking boards, begin at the outer edge of the deck and work your way inward. Using 1/4-inch spacers, place the board in the desired position and screw in the first fastener. Use a rubber mallet to tap the board into place and repeat the process with each board, securing them with two fasteners at each joist junction.
Be sure to space the composite decking boards according to the manufacturer's recommendations, as some brands allow for varying spaces based on temperature and humidity conditions.
Installing the Hidden Fasteners
Once you've secured your decking boards, it's time to install the hidden fasteners. Begin by drilling a pilot hole into the decking board, ensuring you don't go through the surface. Next, attach the fasteners to the exposed joists using deck screws. Commonly, hidden fasteners are installed at a 45-degree angle to the decking surface for optimal strength.
Once you've attached the fastener to the joist, slide the decking board onto the fastener and gently tap it into place. Repeat the process with each joist for optimal structural integrity.
Once all of the decking boards and hidden fasteners are installed, trim any excess material and attach fascia boards to hide the ends of the decking boards. Clean up any debris and you're done!
With hidden fasteners, you've avoided the hassle of exposed screws and nails in your new composite decking installation. You’ve achieved a polished and sleek look, and the added safety of avoiding tripping hazards. Worthy of showing off in your backyard for years to come..