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Preliminary Decisions:

  • Normally, gazebos are placed in the backyard or in a place surrounded with scenic beauty.
  • The shape of your gazebo should depend on the architecture of your house and the shape of the free space where you are thinking of installing it.
  • The roof can be a gable, hip or shed roof.
  • Your gazebo can be in the shape of an octagon, square, rectangle or have as many sides as you choose.
  • You may also consider the number of people you are thinking of accommodating in that gazebo at any given time (for example a 10′ gazebo is comfortable for 4 people and a 12′ gazebo is appropriate for 6 people).
  • To build a gazebo on the ground, you must have a flat surface such as a concrete, flagstone or brick patio or a deck surface.
  • You can screen in your gazebo or leave it open.
  • Since there are structural support posts that hold up a roof in a gazebo, you must pull a permit and have the county inspect its structural integrity, including a footing system.
  • Be careful when a "so called" contractor asks you to pull your permit to save you a few dollars; there may be a licensing issue.
  • Consider the different types of deck materials available such as wood or synthetics like a composite and vinyl. Most contractors have a favorite brand and will recommend one from past experiences.
  • There are many choices, so consider your options. For example, if you get a lot of sunlight a darker colored deck will be very hot on bare feet.
  • Floor patterns can be either parallel to the existing home, angled, diagonal, herringbone or a V floor with a Captain's Walk.
  • Hidden fasteners are also a popular option.
  • For gazebos, a popular flooring choice is tongue-in-groove floor boards, as they keep the bugs out and you don't need a screen mesh below the floor.
  • You can really finish your gazebo off nicely with the railing system of your choice. Search the internet and compare different rail designs. There are wood, composite, vinyl, wrought iron, aluminum, and glass options. You can also combine different materials for a one-of-a-kind look.
  • Optionally, you may want the perimeter and 6 x 6 support posts to be covered in a synthetic material called Azek.
  • We also advise considering rounded, synthetic structural posts or post sleeves to make the gazebo as maintenance-free as possible.
  • You can put an outdoor kitchen made of stone inside or outside of your gazebo.
  • The relatively new under deck products are also very popular. You can make the area below your gazebo a dry space for those rainy days.
  • Consider installing a concrete, flagstone or brick patio to go along with your new, dry space.

How to Build a Deck for a Gazebo

  • All decks must be built according to state and local building codes.
  • Step one is to call Miss Utility to make sure there are no underground wires or utilities.
  • Next, lay out the footer system. Footers must be dug to a minimum depth of 24″ below grade, 18″ wide with 12″ of concrete in each hole, so as to be below the frost line and not "heave up."
  • The footers must be inspected and passed by the county.
  • When building your deck, bolt the ledger board on to the house ledger board and over the existing siding. Bolts are spaced according to building code.
  • If your ledger board is not real wood, use extra vertical and horizontal supports and beams on the rear wall, making your deck "free standing."
  • Install the front header system consisting of 6 x 6 posts and double 2 x 12′s.
  • Next, install the rim board at the perimeter of the deck and suspend your deck in mid-air.
  • Hangers go on to sit the floor joists in.
  • The floor joists are then nailed in a pattern and screwed.
  • Attach the step stringers, followed by the floorboards, which are screwed down and hidden most of the time.
  • Install the rail posts and railings, no greater than 5′ apart from one another. We bear in mind the customer's choice of placement, inside or outside of the deck.
  • The rail posts will be the roof supports.
  • Install a band board wrap at the perimeter to cover the deck boards and give a neat finish.
  • County code requires all steps to be well lit, typically one light per step. A flood light illuminating the steps also may pass code.
  • Clean up on a daily basis to keep your property respectable during the construction process.

How to Build the Roof Structure

  • Remove existing siding,
  • Install roof system.
  • Install new flashing between the house and the roof.
  • Reinstall the siding.
  • Install vinyl soffits and fascia on all overhangs.
  • Install new 5″ gutters and 2 X 3 downspouts.
  • Install a white vinyl or wood storm door.
  • Install removable screens with 5-1/2″ ledge in porch.
  • Allow ceiling to be open, with wainscoting type plywood, 4″ T-111, or sheet rock paint ready.
  • A permit is always required so have a copy of the house plat available.
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