Decks are a great way to add defined space to an otherwise empty yard. They are more attractive and inviting than a plain old grassy yard. Add a great new space to entertain or just kick back in the sun with this environmentally friendly deck.

How to Build an Eco-Friendly Deck - Outdoor - Design  How to Build an Eco-Friendly Deck - Outdoor - Design  How to Build an Eco-Friendly Deck - Outdoor - Design

Materials and Tools:

contractors marking paint
8 precast concrete piers
4-inch composite planks for decking
12-inch planks for deck facing
1-3/8-inch joist hanger nails
joist hangers
3-inch galvanized framing nails
2-1/2-inch composite deck screws
prefabricated stair risers
miter saw
chalk line
deck guide


1. Measure out and mark the outline of your deck. Then, measure out and mark where your concrete piers will sit. When laying each pier, make sure they are no more that 6 feet apart. (Check local building codes; they may require that you use more than just piers.)

2. If you have a grass yard, cut out the sod so that the pier will sit easily on solid ground. Wherever you will be placing a pier, use a tamper to compact the ground. This will make sure that the earth is solid to support the weight of the deck.

3. Once the piers are placed, lay the girders in the joist hangers on the concrete piers. Take a level and set each end on a separate girder to make sure they are both the same level. If they aren't, tamp down the soil of the higher pier until it is level. If you cannot get the pier lower, place shims underneath the girder to raise it to the appropriate level. Make sure that all the joists are even by placing the level between each joist. Nail the joists into place.

4. Lay the cross beams out 16 inches from center over the girders. Since this deck has an angled side, our first four beams are 136 inches long; the fifth beam is 127-1/2 inches; the sixth beam is 111-1/2 inches; the seventh is 95-1/2 inches; the eighth is 79-1/2 inches; and the last beam is 63-1/2 inches. Attach the cross beams to the 4x6 beams with joists hangers.

5. Place 2x4s along the ends of the cross beams on each side of the deck and secure with framing nails. Then add joist hangers where the frame and the cross joist intersect. Because the deck will have an angled side, miter the ends of the two frame beams that will sit on either side of the angle to 45 degrees. Place the beam that runs along the angled side and attach with the framing nails.