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7 Steps to Installing a Deck Drainage System

7 Steps to Installing a Deck Drainage System

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August 13, 2010

Does water pool on your deck during heavy rains? Even worse, does it run off at certain places that wreak havoc on your landscaping? Many homeowners remedy this issue with deck drainage systems. A system can be placed before you finish the flooring on your deck, but it can also be installed under an existing deck.

A Drainage System Can Extend The Life of Your Deck

Ready to make life easier on your landscaping? Here's how:

  1. Choose your materials. Drainage kits are available that are already cut to the size of your deck. You can also opt to choose the individual materials, including the gutter, trough, and downspouts, and create your own configuration.
  2. Choose a nailer. If you are installing the drainage system on a deck that is under construction, a mid-span nailer is needed to keep the joists in place while you work.
  3. Install the downspouts, using plenty of caulk to hold them in place. Let the downspout extend at least an inch beyond the length of the deck.
  4. Put caulking on the joists, and then roll out the trough, stapling it to the joists as you roll it out toward the downspouts. Caulk and staple carefully to keep everything secure. Continue rolling out the trough in sheets, overlapping at the creases, until you have covered the area. Let the trough extend a bit further out than the length of your deck.
  5. Double check everything! Now is the time to make certain your drainage system is secure and placed properly. However, always remember to let the caulking dry thoroughly before you do any testing that involves spraying water over the drainage system.
  6. When fastening the deck boards, ensure one more time that your drainage system is secure. Carefully fasten the deck boards to the drainage system where you can to provide an even stronger hold.
  7. Check on your drainage system from time to time. Watch where the water flows, and keep an eye out for areas of your landscaping that might be battered by runoff after heavy rains. Fix any problems quickly by reinforcing the trough.

If your deck is already finished and access to the underside of it might be tough, consider calling in a professional contractor to help you with the installation of your drainage system. Though installing a drainage system under your existing deck is usually a more difficult job than installing it before the construction is complete, it can be done!

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