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Deck Building FAQs

If you've ever wanted to consult expert deck builders about your project, we are one step ahead. We answer the most common deck-building faqs here! Learn more:


How do you prepare the ground for decking?

To build a deck, you’ll have to work with bare soil. Make sure to clear away plants, rocks, weeds, and turf. Then, you’ll have to dig down 50 mm roughly, ensuring the ground is even.

What is the best material for under a deck?

Gravel or crushed stone is usually the best material for putting under a deck. We recommend ¾” clean stone as the best all-around gravel under your deck.

Does decking need foundations?

If you are building a deck on a nice flat surface, you might not need to raise it at all. You will, however, still need to lay down some footings for the deck frame to sit on. These footings can be as simple as a concrete block bedded into sand, cement, or gravel.

Do decks need drainage?

Wood decks do. Over time, moisture can rot a wood deck and erode the soil beneath it. Further, water can pool beneath it without proper drainage, creating a breeding ground for mold, bacteria, and mosquitoes.

Do decks need ventilation?

If your deck is enclosed or close to the ground, you must ensure a good cross-flow of air through the deck to help reduce humidity levels. The amount of ventilation needed will also depend on your soil’s moisture content. The drier the soil is generally, the less ventilation you’ll need for the deck.

What type of deck lasts the longest?

Choosing the best materials to build your deck will make it last longer. Aluminum and steel are the two most durable types, lasting 30+ years and 60+ years, respectively. Still, they may be expensive but will resist when installed by professional deck builders.

Deck Building

How long does it take to build a deck?

From design to full completion, the deck building process can range from 6 to 16 weeks (broken up into 2 phases). Designing and planning the deck project can take 4 to 8 weeks.

When is the best time to have a deck installed?

The perfect time to build a deck is during the fall. There’s a common misconception that decks should only be made in the spring or summer, but autumn is an ideal time to begin building your deck.

How do you waterproof a deck floor?

You can achieve it by applying a thin, even coat of high-quality, mold and mildew-resistant waterproof sealant with UV protection, using a stain brush, toward the boards.

Deck Maintenance

How often does a deck need to be replaced?

Traditional wood deck: 10 to 15 years.
Capped composite: 25 to 30 years.
Capped polymer (the best of the best): 50 years or more.

Deck Contractors

What should be included in the contract for a decking project?

Before signing off on a contract for deck building, look out for the key things that must be included:

  • Contractor’s license number for Maryland and Virginia.
  • Payment schedule.
  • Scope of the deck project.
  • Work schedule.
  • Notice of right to cancel.

Need Assistance For Deck Building?

America Deck & Patios can provide clients in Maryland and Virginia with further advice and premium design-build solutions to assist with your decking needs. If you require any of both, make sure to contact us today!

For over 23 years we have built a foundation of knowledge and experience that allows us to best serve each of our clients, providing them quality work on time and on budget. We are proud of every single project we have undertaken over the decades, from deck, patio, fencing, sunroom, screen porch, gazebos just to name a few. Our designers further their education in order to understand the latest trends and techniques in design and build.


Mon-Fri: 8 AM – 6 PM
Saturday: 10 AM – 3 PM
Sunday: Closed


Upper Marlboro MD 20772.
Telephone: (240) 435-5941

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