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Pro Tips

How to build a deck

Nothing better than a morning coffee on your terrace. But without a terrace, it's a bit complicated. So our big summer project was to build our own. We wanted something simple, private, but also stylish and affordable. In this article, I reveal all my tips to build yours!

Mélissa Leduc
Lifestyle blogger

The foundation

To install a deck foundation, we decided to use concrete deck base blocks and adjustable deck support, rather than digging into the ground, because a large part of the patio would end up on top of an existing concrete slab. Before laying the blocks, it’s important to put stone dust and compact it. Make sure everything is levelled, to have a solid foundation.


The frame

We decided to build a 9 ft x 12 ft treated wood patio. To begin, we fixed a 12 ft wood plank to the house wall. Then, we installed the rim joists and the centre joists. We added spacers between each joist to strengthen them and prevent them from bending over time. Finally, we added to the planks at the ends. You should not overlook this step to have a solid patio.

For a nice finish, we added a small vinyl strip to prevent standing water from rotting the wood. Then, we added a wood border around the patio.


Environmental and sustainability factors are common considerations when selecting deck materials.

Pressure-treated wood is now manufactured with chemicals that are less harmful than in previous years. However, its environmental impact is more important than natural wood, since it contains chemicals that would harm the environment if they seep into the ground.

Choosing sustainable wood, such as cedar wood, is essential when creating your green outdoor living space. Check the product label for FSC, SFI, or PEFC certification when purchasing wood, which guarantees that the forest is managed in a sustainable and responsible way. By choosing certified wood for your project, you help addressing the issue of deforestation and the availability of natural resources.


  • 78% of the lumber sold in our brands are certified from responsible sources
  • 99.6% of the wood sold in our brands comes from North America

The decking

For the decking, we chose treated wood boards. We took care to lay the decking boards perpendicular to the joists. It is important to leave a small space between the boards to drain the water.


For an ecological choice, it is better to cover the terrace with cedar wood, which is a sustainable wood.

It is also possible to use composite boards as the deck floor. This material is made from wood fibres and recycled plastics. Composite planks are available in different colours, resists fading, scratching, staining and mould, and have a longer life than wood.


The stringers and the handrails

To build the stringers for the stairs, we referred to the following article: Build a one-level deck.

For the handrails, I fell in love with the black aluminum "Classica" railing from KOOL-RAY brand. We fixed them to 4 "x 4" treated wood posts. Finally, we built a wooden privacy wall on one side.


The final touch

To decorate the patio, we added plants to clay pots. Then we added beautiful solar garden lights to the 4 "x 4" treated wood posts and string lights. I highly recommend the solar lights from the Rona ECO line. No connection is required and they automatically turn on at night! Finally, we are going to stain the patio in the end of summer, to let the wood breathe.


Unlike treated wood, cedar does not require chemical treatment. However, dyeing it will increase its durability while reducing its chances of turning gray under UV exposure. Consider using Greenguard certified products, which emit less VOCs and have a better ecological footprint.
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Mélissa Leduc
Lifestyle blogger
Mélissa is a content creator and lifestyle blogger who is very active on social media. You can follow her work on her blog and on her Instagram page @dusty_rose_blog.

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