Aluminum decking

   / Aluminum decking #21  
[I was going to reply to this thread but decided not to hijack... ]

I've been considering aluminum decking to replace ours.

Our deck currently is about 3" of exposed aggregate over what should've been a layer of bituthene, and thus theoretically watertight, because part of the deck is over an enclosed area (and another part is over a hot tub area and thus the deck needed not to drip through there either). The reality is that it's leaked here and there, and there's evidence it's because the concrete people didn't pay attention when setting forms and destroyed the bituthene... anyways

so I've been looking at alternatives for this, because we're probably going to do a complete tear-off, and I found "LockDry" aluminum decking that looks pretty decent:
View attachment 719134View attachment 719135

The concept looks good to me; for our deck besides the tear-off and repair of any damaged joists (and whatever other bad stuff we find) I may need to fur the joists for proper slope (depending on how the joists are sloped currently).

Does anyone have experience with this decking system?
I installed a 12' x 14' aluminum LocDry deck 8 years ago. It has held up well and still looks great. The only three minor complaints I've had are:

1 - The deck is noisy. It creaks due to expansion & contraction from temperature changes and can be almost deafening in a hail storm.

2 - I occasionally get insects plugging up the drain gutter ends which can cause water to back up and cause drips. This is very minor though and is easily fixed. I just hit the gutter ends with the pressure washer every spring.

3 - The color of the starter and finisher planks did not exactly match the main planks since they were from a different manufacturing run. It is a minor difference though and will vary depending on the color you choose.

The aluminum planks have to be placed perpendicular to the house so the gutters channel the water away from the building. This means the support joists have to run parallel to the ledger board on the house. Not a big deal but it requires more framing lumber. You can't use joist hangers on the ledger board like you would with a normal treated lumber deck.

Once the framing is in place, the aluminum planks go down very quickly. My wife and I did our entire 12 x 14 in an afternoon. I ordered extra planks and cut them down to make stairs.

The decking can get hot in the summer sun. The lighter colors don't get too hot to walk on in bare feet but it could be different with the darker colors.

Overall, it's a good product I can recommend. My neighbor is about to order it for a deck to cover his hot tub.
 
   / Aluminum decking #22  
I wonder how it will or won't react to pressure treated wood?

When I had the rear door on my house replaced the wood framing had rotted at the bottom. They cut the rotten part out and replaced it with pressure treated then put the aluminum flashing back on. The flashing is now disintegrating. I am going to have to replace it with vinyl flashing I guess.
The Loc Dry aluminum decking is powder coated so no bare aluminum comes in contact with the treated lumber. Stainless screws are used to fasten it. No signs of corrosion on mine after 8 years.
 
   / Aluminum decking
  • Thread Starter
#23  
The Loc Dry aluminum decking is powder coated so no bare aluminum comes in contact with the treated lumber. Stainless screws are used to fasten it. No signs of corrosion on mine after 8 years.
Good to know.
I'm likely to do a lot of this work myself, and putting down plywood, while more expensive in materials vs the bridge blocking they propose in (A), would probably take a fraction of the time and effort (and stress, especially where my deck is 14' up). I'm guessing even if I hire that part of the work out, it may be cheaper because of time as well.
 
   / Aluminum decking #24  
Reading the FAQ for the lockdry stuff, there's this:

6: How should LockDry decking run with the house?​

View attachment 719278
My joists run from the house to the edge of the deck, so I'll be looking at either (A) or (B) above.

Note here in (B) they say "Cover the deck with 3/4" pressure treated plywood to fasten to" (currently about $58/sheet here, ouch); they don't say not to put the aluminum directly over that. They do supply stainless fasteners, though.
If it were me I would run option A; as @grsthegreat points out the drainage would be all away from the house, and b) you wouldn't have to mess with the bridging blocking and pressure treated plywood. Plus if you do get a leak due to an imperfection in b) it will be trapped against the plywood for a big area.

All the best,

Peter
 
   / Aluminum decking #25  
Folks may be getting their As and Bs and whatnots mixed up.

But, thinking outside the box ....

From what I'm understanding, you have to tear off the whole deck surface down to the joists. At that point, you have to make a choice to (A) block or (B) cover with plywood. (A) will take a lot of time, cutting and fitting and loads of extra fasteners. (B) will add a great deal of weight and won't guarantee against rot or decay between it and the decking.

I've never pulled the surface off a deck and not found some degree of decay in the joists. Some always need repair or replacement.

Since you have it torn apart to the joists anyways, what about removing them and rebuilding to reorient them to what the top portion of the picture shows (neither A or B)? Would it take more time and effort than blocking or laying plywood? It would certainly cost less and allow for replacement of bad pieces that can't be re-used. It would not add any weight and allow the underside of the decking to breathe and be visible for inspection

As far as the height, some scaffolding would make it much easier.

Now, once finished, would it be possible to lay outdoor carpeting ? That would help with both the hot foot and noise issues. You wouldn't even have to secure it across the entire surface Just tack the edges so you could roll it up when needed.
 
   / Aluminum decking
  • Thread Starter
#26  
If it were me I would run option A; as @grsthegreat points out the drainage would be all away from the house, and b) you wouldn't have to mess with the bridging blocking and pressure treated plywood. Plus if you do get a leak due to an imperfection in b) it will be trapped against the plywood for a big area.

All the best,

Peter
I'd prefer having the joists running that way, but the deck already exists and needs a new surface (assuming a majority of the current joists are in decent enough condition to use!). The (a) vs (b) is (a) = blocking to bridge between the joists, and (b) = plywood over the joists acting as bridging.
 
   / Aluminum decking #27  
I'd prefer having the joists running that way, but the deck already exists and needs a new surface (assuming a majority of the current joists are in decent enough condition to use!). The (a) vs (b) is (a) = blocking to bridge between the joists, and (b) = plywood over the joists acting as bridging.
When I installed my DryLoc deck, I removed the old joists, which were in good condition, and reinstalled them parallel to the house. Some additional lumber was needed but there was a significant cost savings. The deck is 14' off the ground and I used scaffold which made the job much easier.

I considered using 3/4" treated plywood on the old joists but it defeated the purpose of installing the expensive aluminum decking. A waterproof membrane over the plywood, covered with a much cheaper surface material would have produced the same dry area under the deck. There are many products suitable for this including vinyl sheeting or even AstroTurf.
 
   / Aluminum decking #28  
This is what happens to anodized aluminum flashing on pressure treated wood.
IMG_20211102_185148537.jpeg
 
   / Aluminum decking
  • Thread Starter
#29  
When I installed my DryLoc deck, I removed the old joists, which were in good condition, and reinstalled them parallel to the house. Some additional lumber was needed but there was a significant cost savings. The deck is 14' off the ground and I used scaffold which made the job much easier.

I considered using 3/4" treated plywood on the old joists but it defeated the purpose of installing the expensive aluminum decking. A waterproof membrane over the plywood, covered with a much cheaper surface material would have produced the same dry area under the deck. There are many products suitable for this including vinyl sheeting or even AstroTurf.

I think turning the joists would require supporting headers to be installed lower and I don't think we have the space to do that.

The waterproof membrane concept with whatever on top of it is a no-go for us as that's what the current failure of a deck has.

I'll have to price the difference in materials & time between using plywood (expensive but quick) and blocking (cheaper but more work).

This is what happens to anodized aluminum flashing on pressure treated wood.View attachment 719458

Definitely ugly. The Dryloc is powder-coated and supposedly can go directly on pressure treated lumber.
 
   / Aluminum decking #30  
Corrosion with Brown Pressure Treated is more of a problem for me than the Green Pressure Treated.
 
 
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