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Most Common Problems - Deck Inspections

Many houses in Central Alabama have decks at the back of the house. In many instances, these decks are high off the ground. That makes it very important that the deck be carefully inspected.

The most common problems that The Home Inspector sees are:

Common deck inspection problem - balusters
Deck Balusters are too wide
Common deck  problem - cracked and deteriorated decking
Deteriorated and weathered decking

  1. The ledger board is not bolted to the house. Instead it is nailed or screwed to the house. This could cause the deck to pull away from the house and could lead to a catastrophic failure of the deck. This is one of the most common reasons a deck fails.

  2. The deck beams are not set on post, but instead are nailed or bolted into the post. Nails and bolts are not sufficient for the shear stress that is being placed upon them. This could cause a failure and collapse of the deck.

  3. Balusters on the deck rails are too wide. This could allow a child or pet to fall thru them.

  4. Deck surface is weathered, cracked or decayed.

  5. Deck rails do not have enough support post and as a result they are not sturdy.

  6. Post are not large enough for the height of the deck. In some cases the post actually bow.

  7. Post are rotting at the ground.

  8. Deck floor joists are nailed into the floor beams and are not supported by either a joist hanger or by a board nailed along the beam as support.

  9. Floor joists spans are too long. This results in the deck having a bouncy feel.

Common deck problem - rotted wood
Rotted wood at the base of a deck post.

The post is rotten at the bottom.

Common deck problem - deck improperly fastened to house
Deck is not bolted to the house

The ledger board is not bolted to the house.


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