Gravity…awesome to experience on a roller coaster or slide…not so great on you deck!

Roller coasterKnowing that gravity is an unfailing force is comforting, usually. It makes anything not firmly planted beneath the earth’s surface or properly attached to a stable structure eventually tumble to the ground. This thought doesn’t pop into your head until the moment you step onto something that wobbles or moves, even one that does it ever so slightly…such as walking across a swinging bridge in the mountains or while boarding a plane or ship…all of which you know to expect some movement. You should absolutely never experience this is when stepping out onto your deck; the most beloved spot for entertaining and relaxing. A well maintained, routinely inspected deck is one that gives you peace of mind each and every time you step on to it.

Logo - Deck SafetyMay, in the building industry is recognized as National Deck Safety Month and even though Archadeck of Central Maryland and Montgomery County helps to increase deck safety awareness during May, we feel deck maintenance should actually be conducted year-round to ensure safety. With a large portion of the approximately 40 million decks over 20 years old in the US, not being properly maintained or routinely inspected, it isn’t surprising that in a six-year period there were an estimated 179 deck failures resulting in 1,122 injuries and 33 deaths. What is startling, however, is the fact that according to NADRA, The North American Deck and Railing Association, deck failures that result in injury are increasing at an alarming rate and are mostly due to non-maintained, aged decks or just shoddy workmanship of a cut-rate builder.

Maryland_Bethesda_Baltimore_Best_Deck_Builder_Contractor_Outdoor_Living_SpecialistIf a deck is built by a reputable experienced builder, it will be built correctly meeting or exceeding building codes, and give you peace of mind in knowing your deck is safe and structurally sound from the ground up. A well-built deck that is both structurally sound and safe also includes the following components: ledger boards that are either bolted or screwed securely to side of the house; support posts that are mounted to concrete footers; diagonal and/or lateral post braces, proper railing and stairs as well as connectors and fasteners (such as galvanized or stainless steel bolts, screws, nails and joist and post connectors) specially designed for deck construction.

Just as it is with yours or your loved ones’ health (keeping an eye out for potential symptoms or health issues), when it comes to your deck’s safety, YOU are its first line of defense as well. And, since each of your family member’s health is directly affected by the safety of the things you use, you are killing two birds with one stone, so to speak. It’s as simple as doing a visual inspection of the deck each time you use it or are outside near it. If you see any rotten, cracked or damaged wood, or any loose, missing or corroded metal bracing or parts, it is recommended to have a structural engineer or an established, well-respected contractor evaluate your deck before its next use.

hassle-free no textDeck safety is a top priority and we want to ensure you or a member of your family doesn’t become a casualty as a result of an unsafe deck. Archadeck of Central Maryland and Montgomery County offers a thorough, certified deck safety inspection for a modest fee. You’ll receive a detailed checklist that highlights any necessary or suggested repairs or maybe your deck is good for a couple more years; we’ll let you know that too. Here are just a few of the critical areas our deck safety inspection covers: foundation and footings, the attachment to your home, decking boards, connections and fasteners, the posts, beams and joists (if visible) of the structure, any sagging between supports, as well as stairs and rails.

While we’re there to perform the inspection and upon your request we can also provide a free consultation on what would be involved with replacing your deck with an updated design that meets or exceeds all building code requirements and is best suited for your outdoor living needs.

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John Barrett Archadeck of MarylandIf you feel it’s time for your deck to be inspected for safety or are considering a new deck, or re-deck in the future, Archadeck of Central Maryland is the right choice for you. Our professional and talented staff members are experts at producing beautiful, quality outdoor living structures which are well designed and structurally sound. Contact us to learn more or to schedule your deck inspection or new project consultation today at (301) 926 – 3001 or email at centralmaryland@archadeck.net or montgomeryco@archadeck.net.

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A Chevy Chase MD deck and open porch by Archadeck of Maryland

Close up view of Chevy Chase, MD covered porch by Archadeck of Central MD

Our 3-dimensional design rendering shows the open porch design and how it flows from the deck to the homes interior with ease

Maybe you can relate to this scenario…  You move from your existing home into a home that offers more of what you need and want out of a house. The basis  for your move may be a bigger home, a better address, a shorter commute to work or possibly all of the above. Once you get settled into your new location and it begins to feel like home you realize that the outdoor structure that you had at your previous home has been much more sorely missed than you would’ve ever imagined. Even though your interior living space exceeds your expectations, when you reminisce about the old deck and porch you left behind you find yourself humming the tune of the Michael Bolton song, ” how am I supposed to live without you”?

Complete view of Chevy Chase, MD deck and open porch by Archadeck of Maryland

This image shows the Chevy Chase, MD outdoor living areas in their entirety

This is exactly what happened to these Chevy Chase, MD homeowners upon their recent move. They really enjoyed spending time outdoors and they found themselves in a most unfortunate circumstance; their wonderful new home had no outdoor living space at all. Their old home had a nice deck that they used frequently and they contacted us to get the ball rolling to design an outdoor space for them to help quench their thirst for outdoor living.

Chevy Chase deck builder back elevation

This detailed drawing shows the back elevation of the structure and how it harmonizes with the architecture of the home

We set out to design an elegant and formal looking space for them that would incorporate a roomy new deck and open porch. The couple’s existing home is a two-story with a  basement that grades up from one side to the other. Our challenge was to overcome the slope of the space as well as incorporate a large tree that the outdoor structures needed to harmonize with. Our solution was to concentrate our design on the homes rectilinear design to create a space that compliments the home, offers a comforting flow to and from the home’s interior spaces and lends itself to future projects in the back yard.

Close up design rendering of flow and function of Chevy Chase, MD deck and porch by Archadeck of Maryland

Close up design rendering showing the flow and function of this Chevy Chase, MD deck and porch by Archadeck of Maryland

We are constructing a deck which also includes a large rectangular open porch which matches the architecture of the house. The area will tie together with a hip roof on an open porch. The open porch is six plus feet above the grade of the lot so they will enjoy insect control because of the elevation. The french doors that are being installed off the home’s dining room will spill out onto the porch and will also provide access to the family room addition which was added to the home a few years ago. We are flanking either side of the doors which will serve as eating and seating areas. From one side of the open porch the homeowner will have close proximity to the interior kitchen. We also designed the deck to include the family barbecue area in close proximity to the kitchen area for ease and convenience when entertaining or dining outdoors. Since one of the homeowner’s wishes is to focus on the elegance within the outdoor space, the columns will be trimmed to blend the front exterior of the home and will make the design refined, tight and cohesive.

Design rendering prepared for Chevy Chase, MD porch and deck by Archadeck of Maryland

Design rendering prepared for Chevy Chase, MD porch and deck by Archadeck of Maryland

The stunning deck is designed to allow for future projects in the backyard as the homeowners see fit. On the deck and open porch we are using Guardian Prestige in weather wood with Shoreline railings. The entire project was carved like a diamond out of the rough for these Chevy Chase, MD homeowners. Archadeck of Central Maryland and Archadeck of Montgomery County was able to overcome the designing obstacles with ease and perfection. The homeowners are eager to enjoy their completed deck and open porch for many years to come.

John Barrett Archadeck of MarylandContact Archadeck of Central Maryland and Archadeck of Montgomery County to find out how to create an outdoor oasis in your own backyard. We provide quality outdoor structures that will not only add value to your home, but enrich your life as well. (301) 926 – 3001
centralmaryland@archadeck.net or montgomeryco@archadeck.net

See more deck and open porch designs by Visiting our Deck galleries and porch galleries located on our website.

Fill ‘er up with a new deck this year. What does the price of gas have to do with your new deck?

Archadeck of Central Maryland AZEK deck

This deck by Archadeck of Central Maryland is constructed from AZEK, a composite decking material that looks lovely against the backdrop of autumn leaves.

You can probably feel the sting in your wallet every time you visit the pump to fill up. With the ever-increasing price of gas, many aspects within our economy can be affected. Gasoline is derived from crude oil, which is a commodity, and like many other commodities when demand is on the rise, the price goes up. Everything from hand lotion, to dish washing detergents and even frozen foods are made using derivatives of crude oil in one form or another, and when the demand from crude oil rises, so do the prices we pay for these everyday items.

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This composite deck with pergola by Archadeck of Maryland, is just one example of the many outdoor structures we can have ready for you by spring.

One aspect that is affected by the rising price of crude oil, is composite decking materials. One major component that goes into creating composite decking is plastic and plastic is a bi-product of refining crude oil . The plastic is costing the composite manufacturers more so the composite prices will increase. Throughout the year the trend in rising crude oil prices fluctuates and intermittent pricing of materials that are derived from crude oil will be affected, however through past price hikes we have seen a trend in crude oil prices experiencing a brisk rise during the month of December in recent years. There is always an increase in composite deck materials which occurs twice a year. The increases are generally seen in December and during the mid-summer months.  This means that deciding to go ahead and build that deck or outdoor structure you have had on hold now may save you quite a bit of green in the long run. Aside from the avoidance of rising composite prices, there are many other reasons why building your outdoor structure now, rather than later can benefit you greatly.

An outdoor oasis by Archadeck of Maryland

An outdoor oasis by Archadeck of Maryland

Not only will you avoid the long lines and waiting periods that usually accompany Spring construction, your structure will actually be ready for you and your family to use and enjoy in the Spring. You can enjoy the first blooms of spring from your deck or outdoor structure instead of saying, ” I wish we already had our outdoor structure up and running”. There are also  fewer winter weather delays now than in the months of January and February. The cooler weather conditions also means the crews can work longer hours because of the absence of the summer heat which can sometimes create a longer than expected building deadline to occur if weather conditions are too hot and require more hydration breaks for the workers.

GuardDeck Guardian Elite decking Maryland

GuardDeck Guardian Elite composite decking by Archadeck of Maryland

Another key aspect of choosing to build now is there is less damage caused to your turf and landscaping when materials and construction crews are upon it. Most plants and turf are dormant during the late fall and winter months which helps protect them from damage that may occur from construction, as well as cooler temperatures creating a firmer ground to work on with less risk of turf damage.  Archadeck of Montgomery County  also encourages homeowners to consider building now because of the savings that can be accrued by just the concrete aspect of your outdoor structure.  During the cooler months concrete is being poured below the frost line which means you can use cold water concrete and this can be poured down into the lower single digit temperatures, and financially this comes out to a great deal for the homeowner.

Composite deck by Archadeck

This deck by Archadeck shows the beauty that can be yours with a composite deck.

If you are yearning and dreaming of a new deck, patio or other outdoor structure choosing to build now can mean a big difference in the savings, and in having your structure sooner than you could’ve imagined by avoiding the spring backlogs. Even choosing to wait until April or May to begin construction could put you into mid-summer having your structure completed. Right now Archadeck of Montgomery County is offering up to $2,500 off your project if you sign up before the end of 2011. Our offer gives you 10% off with a cap of $2,500, contact us for details.

John Barrett Archadeck of MarylandDon’t wait any longer, wouldn’t the perfect outdoor structure be the perfect holiday gift for yourself and your family? Contact us today to get in on the savings, from the gas pump to your backyard. (301) 926 – 3001
centralmaryland@archadeck.net or montgomeryco@archadeck.net

For more beautiful composite and PVC deck designs, visit our composite and PVC deck photo gallery on our website.

An open porch/covered porch or screened porch – that is the question. See what these Highland MD owners chose.

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Archadeck of Maryland captures the charm and beauty of a by-gone era in covered porch design

When I think of the concept of an open porch design my mind drifts to the grace of a structure constructed with white columns where you spend the late afternoon relaxing and sipping iced tea. This image takes me back to a time when things were simpler and the world moved a little bit slower.  The covered porches of today encompass that same great architecture that we remember from an era gone by. Round columns used in an open covered porch are still hugely popular and are considered quite upscale. When you look at a screened porch, the first thing you notice are these columns, which is part of the covered porch’s appeal and charm. The columns are used to make an architectural statement as well as laying a firm foundation for the structural integrity of the structure itself.

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This gabled roof lends clean design lines in this covered porch by Archadeck of Maryland

We enjoy designing and building both screened porches, and covered or open porches. If you’re thinking about adding a new porch to your home, how do you decide which is best for you? I’ll talk about several factors that may help you decide whether screens or open air are best for you.

Shape

In terms of shape, screened porches, because of the screens and the architectural limitations of making a screened structure, usually end up with a boxed structure, either square or rectangular. The dimensions are usually kept within certain confines to make the screened porch functional and in ratio to the existing house. Covered, open porches are very different in the aspect of what can be done in terms of shape. An open porch gives you more design flexibility by the use of columns. Covered porches can also be built in different shapes, like a half octagon, or even a full octagon reminiscent of a gazebo style design. The use of decorative columns is beautiful and is always popular.

Open porch by Archadeck of Maryland

With round columns and a beautifully detailed ceiling design this covered porch has it all

Columns

Round columns, Georgian and Roman style columns, capital base and trim and even ogee ends halfway up the columns are commonly used in the construction of covered or open porches. Because screening does not need to be attached, column options are greater. The type of columns you choose should complement your home’s architecture, but in the same token, you can choose a design that will have a striking impact on the appearance of the entire back of your residence. With a custom designed and professionally built covered porch you can transform your average looking backyard into something truly magnificent.

Protection from the elements

With an open porch design you will get the same amount of sun protection that you would with a screened porch and you get a little better breeze because there is nothing to impede the air flow. There are drawbacks though, to choosing a covered “open” design versus  screened design. This would be the insects. The insect barrier within a covered porch is non-existent without the luxury of an independent influence. Ceiling fans are commonly used on covered porches to help circulate the air and they provide some minimal insects protection. Insects are less likely to land on you when there is a constant flow of air. A covered porch is an ideal choice for people who want the open feel as well as the endless design possibilities, and those who have a higher tolerance level for insects or those who incorporate pest control into their landscape.

Design rendering in Highland, MD by Archadeck of Maryland

One of the many design renderings Archadeck of Maryland prepared for the upcoming covered porch and deck combination in Highland, MD

Ceilings and electrical

The homeowner has the same options with a covered porch as with a screened porch. Some examples of these options include open or closed rafters, recessed lighting ,skylights, electrical outlets and the capability to mount entertainment equipment such as TV’s, stereos and speakers. There are even open porch designs that incorporate  the luxury of an outdoor fireplaces or outdoor kitchen as well.

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This photo depicts how the upcoming structure will look from an inside the house, with the aid of our design rendering

Another viable option is to construct a deck and covered porch combination structure. In this structure, the porch sits on a deck and the deck extends a significant distance past the porch area. When designing this type of deck/porch combination, Archadeck of Maryland usually extends the deck surface five feet beyond the room and doesn’t add railings. The absence of the railing opens up the deck area and gives you a nice flow from covered to non-covered area as well as from the deck into the yard. This type of design supports the feng shui principles of “less is more”, and not impeding the visual flow from one structure to another.

This upcoming project we are working on in Highland, MD incorporates these same design principles. We are using Square columns, which are large and square to match the homes existing columns. This will ensure the house will match from front to back. When you walk in the home’s entryway, you will see french doors that will lead into the structure. With the aid of a design renderings, which we provide to all of our clients, the homeowners are actually able to “virtually” experience the views of the design before construction begins.

See  more design renderings at the bottom of this post.

John Barrett Archadeck of MarylandArchadeck of Maryland can plan, design and build a structure that takes you back to a by-gone era with the modern conveniences of today. Contact Archadeck of Maryland today to find out more about these and other outdoor structures. (301) 926 – 3001
centralmaryland@archadeck.net

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You are able to experience another angle with this design rendering for this covered porch and deck in Highland, MD

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This design rendering showcases the open porch in conjunction with the large double deck in Highland, MD

Switch over to “Island time” with a new pool or spa deck from Archadeck of Maryland

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Trex composite deck and railing over spa by Archadeck of Maryland

It’s that time of the year, when the weather is hot and the living is easy. The kids are on summer break, and summer is a time when the whole world moves just a little slower, more relaxed, a time for friends family and the great outdoors. A great way to cool off, slow down and have a little summer fun is to take a dip in the pool, and a great way to add beauty and accessibility to your pool or spa is with a custom pool or spa deck from Archadeck of Central Maryland and Archadeck of Montgomery County.

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Pool and spa deck combination in Trex composite by Archadeck of Maryland

Pool and spa decking can play a huge role in the aesthetics and range of uses for your pool or spa. A well planned and executed pool or spa deck can transform your pool area into an extension of your living space. A place you want to spend time on even when you aren’t using your pool or spa. There are a wide variety of shapes and styles available to complement your area and a wide range of quality materials to construct your outdoor oasis from. One such material is composite decking which lends itself to use around a pool or spa because of all the attributes it carries.

Composite pool decks such as this can transform your backyard into a spa-like oasis

Composite pool decks such as this can transform your backyard into a spa-like oasis

Composite decking materials such as Trex, AZEK, TimberTech, and Fiberon are mold and mildew resistant and won’t fade or warp from exposure to the summer sun.  Composites come in a multitude of finishes, some so close to real wood you have to reach down and touch it to know the difference. Many of today’s composites are made with slip resistance in mind, providing a safer decking material to use around pools and spas. Composites won’t retain heat or splinter on those hot summer days, so they are easy on the feet as well as on the eye. Leaders in the composite decking industry have warranted their decking boards for as much as 30 years, proof positive that composites are the real deal.

John Barrett Archadeck of MarylandIf you are ready to move your clock over to “Island time” with the addition of a luxurious and hassle free pool or spa deck contact Archadeck of Central Maryland and Montgomery County  to find out more. If you live in the areas listed below call us to discuss your next pool, spa or water feature deck or living area ideas call 301-926-3001 or email us at centralmaryland@archadeck.net or you can also email us at montgomeryco@archadeck.net

Check to see if we cover your area. Here is a list of the locations we cover:

Montgomery County, MD
Ashton, Aspen Hill, Barnesville, Beallsville, Bethesda, Boyds, Brinklow, Brookeville, Burtonsville, Cabin John, Chevy Chase, Clarksburg, Cloverly, Colesville, Comus, Damascus, Darnestown, Derwood, Dickerson, Gaithersburg, Germantown, Glen Echo, Glenmont, Hillandale, Hyattstown, Kensington, Laytonsville, Leisure World, Montgomery Village, Montgomry Vlg, N Bethesda, N Potomac, Norbeck, North Bethesda, North Potomac, Olney, Poolesville, Potomac, Rockville, Sandy Spring, Silver Spring, Somerset, Spencerville, Sunshine, Takoma Park, Takoma Pk, Unity, Westlake, Wheaton

Anne Arundel, Howard, Prince Georges Counties, MD

Annapolis, Annapolis Junction, Aspen Hill, Baltimore, Beltsville, Bowie, Brooklyn, Brunswick, Catonsville, Cheltenham, Clarksville, Clifton East End, Colesville, College Park, Columbia, Crofton, Crownsville, Daniels, Davidsonville, Dayton, Eastport, Edgewater, Edgewater Bch, Elkridge, Ellicott, Ellicott City, Fort Washington, Frederick, Fulton, Gaithersburg, Germantown, Glen Burnie, Glenarden, Glenelg, Glenwood, Glyndon, Granite, Greenbelt, Hagerstown, Hanover, Harmans, Henryton, Highland, Hunt Valley, Ilchester, Jessup, Kettering, Knoxville, Lake Shore, Largo, Laurel, Lineboro, Lisbon, Loch Raven, Lutherville, Lutherville Timonium, Manchester, Millersville, Mitchellville, Montpelier, Oella, Olney, Oxon Hill, Pasadena, Pikesville, Reisterstown, Riviera Beach, Rockville, Savage, Scaggsville, Severn, Severna Park, Sherwood Forest, Silver Spring, Simpsonville, Timonium, Towson, Upper Marlboro, Uppr Marlboro, W Friendship, West Friendship, Westminster, Woodbine, Woodstock

Fiberon composite deck in Montgomery County MD

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Fiberon composite deck with white railing by Archadeck of Maryland

In the world of decks composites are leading the way in strength, durability and aesthetic appeal. This deck and pergola combination by Archadeck of Maryland in no exception. This deck was built of Fiberon. Fiberon like other composite brands enjoys the benefits of low maintenance, fade and stain resistance, water and mildew resistance and hues that match the natural beauty of real wood.

Fiberon Horizon Ipe color decks Maryland

Fiberon Horizon decking board in Ipe color used by Archadeck of Maryland

Composite decks give you the freedom and flexibility to create a myriad of outdoor structures in all shape and sizes. Upkeep and maintenance on composite decks is limited to washing it twice a year to remove any dirt or pollen. This can usually be achieved with as little effort as sweeping.

Composites such as Fiberon are earth friendly as well, being constructed of recycled materials. You get a deck as strikingly beautiful as it is carefree deck!  Composite decking uses polymer technology and high density polyethylene resin.

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Composite deck with pergola by Archadeck of Maryland

This particular construction is stunning with the contrast of the wood hues against the white railing. We also created separate spaces for grilling and entertaining by utilizing a step down area for these homeowners.  The pergola adds a design element and a defining focal point for the structure. This deck is definitely the place to be all season long.

John Barrett Archadeck of MarylandIf you are considering a deck in your near future, composites are a solid choice in decking. Give Archadeck of Maryland a call to design and construct your deck. We have many composite decking choices to choose from right at your fingertips. 301-926-3001

This Screened Porch and Deck in Potomac, MD Spotlights the Exotic Beauty of IPE

You may be thinking about adding a hardwood deck such as mahogany or tigerwood onto your home. There are a number of fabulous and breathtakingly beautiful hardwoods on the scene. Not only do some of this hardwoods take advantage of the natural beauty of the wood, some of them boast durability as well.

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This photo by Archadeck of Maryland shows the clipped corners for a panoramic view

Archadeck of Maryland turns back the clock a little to focus on a project we did a few years back for a customer in Potomac, MD. We changed out an existing house wall and made it into a beautiful stone wall and then added a 3-walled screened porch with clipped corners for a panoramic view. We used Ipe flooring and a beautiful clean cedar ceiling, just a stunning combination. We also added a small deck off the outside edge of the screened porch, on the far wall the deck is just big enough for a BBQ. We used a pair of french doors as the exit doors, this added an air of refinement to the addition. To add character and whimsy we installed a cupola on the roof as well.

The house was roughly a 1960’s home in the french colonial style and it had a mansard style roof. The home had a family room with a picture room with doors on either side, this is where we removed all of that and installed the wide opening to accommodate the screened porch. Along with the mansard style roof the home had cedar shakes, we matched the roof of the new structure with the same cedar shakes. Even though this was expensive and very maintenance prone over time, it was necessary to keep the structural integrity of the home intact.

This had been the 1st job we had ever finished a ceiling out with clean cedar, we used a satin finish, which looks even more elegant than a high gloss finish. The choice to use Ipe for the flooring was in part for the beauty and the other would be the extreme durability. Ipe is nicknamed “ironwood” by the industry. It is so hard and resilient you need to use titanium drill bits to drill through it. It will not float in fresh water because of its dense nature. In places where water and long-lasting are used in the same sentence such as floating docks and even the Annapolis yacht club, we have seen it used with much success. We have even heard that the New Jersey boardwalk is not made of Ipe because of its quality.

Ipe is a clean wood as well, it has a dark chocolate palette with variations from board to board. Much is the look of the Brazilian hardwoods. All you need to do to keep that dark beautiful finish is seal it. It will turn a silver-gray, the sealing is only to maintain the color, because even if you choose not to seal Ipe it will not degrade .

John Barrett Archadeck of MarylandThis is just one of the many happy customers we have built structures for of hardwood decking. We have many more options, as well as Ipe. Give Archadeck of Maryland a call today to find out more at (301) 926 – 3001 or email us at centralmaryland@archadeck.net.

These Avid Golfers Get a New Deck and Pergola to Make “Tee” Time Fabulous

Archadeck of Maryland recently had the opportunity to work with a wonderful couple. The couple are great customers of ours, not only are they doting grandparents they are avid golfers as well. Their duplex home is in a prime location where they can enjoy their love of golf – on a golf course. They wanted us to try to come up with a solution to their problem of errant gold balls continually coming toward their home. Our job was to fix this problem from a backyard design standpoint.

These golfing grandparents had an almost non-existent lot line. We decided on expanding the existing deck quite a bit and adding an octagon. The main deck is elevated one step up.

Fiberon Horizon Ipe color decks Maryland

Fiberon Horizon decking board in Ipe color used by Archadeck of Maryland

We used Fiberon horizon composite decking in the beautiful ipe color. We also added a double contrasting border around both deck sections. The deck was “picture framed” with two boards. The couple used a shoreline railing by Maryland vinyl product with a decking board rail cap product on top.

This new and improved deck was finished off with a vinyl trimmed pergola. We added the pergola to the top and they plan to have a shade tree slide out awning installed on it. We finished out the support beams in pvc vinyl so they have a finished look and are aesthetically appealing. We also did the underdeck system so they could use the patio down below.

Even though they have an elevated deck, they decided not to provide stairs down to the outside. This was a security decision. Their second level is their main living area and they don’t want to allow outside entry access to the deck. A wise decision to add more security to the home.

With the expansion and facelift of this couple’s deck, a pergola and some strategically placed awnings, no more unwelcome golf balls will intrude into their outdoor oasis. This makes their “tea” time fabulous.

If you are ready to expand, or build that special space in your own backyard, give Archadeck of Maryland a call to make it happen. (301) 926 – 3001. centralmaryland@archadeck.net

Owner of Archadeck of Central Maryland- John Barrett

This Deck in Bethesda, MD Shows That “Zen” is “In”

Open design with a "zen" feel

This deck was designed and constructed for some wonderful homeowners in Bethesda, MD. The homeowners have a meticulous taste for decorating, style and design. The goal was to have an elevated deck to gain access to the patio and the house.  The homeowner also wanted to keep the number of stairs to a minimum when getting over to the patio area. The challenge was to make this elevated deck appealing to the owners’ meticulous eye for design and personal taste but unobtrusive and with a modern feel.

Design rendering that was not chosen by the homeowners

We were up to the challenge of turning this backyard into a haven for relaxation for these Bethesda customers. We met with them and drew up a few design renderings to give them a feel for what the structure would look like when it came to

Rendering from above, this was the chosen design for the deck

fruition.They wanted a beautifully open look to the backyard and since their yard grades up we decided upon an open deck with a “zen” feel to it.

Detailed view of the beautiful mahogany

The wood we chose is pre-finished mahogany which is a beautiful exotic hardwood similar to Ipe and tigerwood. This particular deck has a variation in the color of the planks which adds to the feeling of being real hardwood. The maintenance for mahogany is the same as any other exotic hardwood, or hardwood in general, you can leave it untreated and it will “gray” out in about one year or you can apply a tropical hardwood oil to ensure color preservation.

Before the addition of the deck

With the homeowners wishes for as few stairs as possible within the structure, the stairs descending down one side were a challenge. These stairs were not considered permanent structures because we were able to build them going down one side. We run into these type of things quite often, so we enjoy coming up with creative solutions. If the deck had been higher than 30 inches we would’ve had to use a rail,  border or benches.

Mahogany deck Bethesday Maryland

Mahogany deck Bethesday Maryland

We were able to blend the deck into the landscape where the back yard gently grades up to leave this open like the homeowner wanted. The finished dimensions of the deck were 20.5′ wide and 18′ deep.

Keeping the “zen” feeling throughout this structure made it open and airy. Many designers would say this deck has good “feng-shui”, we just know it is another structure we enjoyed building to make another homeowners vision of tranquility a reality. Give Archadeck of Maryland a call to design your upcoming outdoor structure.(301) 926 – 3001

Owner of Archadeck of Central Maryland- John Barrett

The Eye of Artful Design: Potomac, MD Home home with a Screened Porch and Multiple Decks

We recently completed a job for a customer in Potomac, MD whom wanted to add a new screened-in porch and replace an existing deck. We really went in-depth in the design process before construction to make sure we had accomplished everything the homeowner desired. These are the kinds of projects I really enjoy. I like to sink myself into a design challenge. The challenge may be presented based on how to make the most of a small space, based on how to really tie the new structure into the home or by how to meet zoning codes and still get the design the homeowners want.

Interior of completed screened porch

People almost always ask for a gable roof design when considering the addition of a screened porch or sunroom. The appeal of using a gabled roof makes people think of open, and airy designs. In this case taking into consideration the existing architecture of this home with the multiple shed roof lines, a gable roof just would not have kept the structural integrity of the existing house. I knew I had to create a design that utilized the shed style roof and still accomplish everything a gable promises; like openness and airiness and a grand feeling.

rendering showing the design of the gable roof which we did not choose

This home had very high ceilings on the first floor which allowed us to tie the screened porch in perfectly architecturally with the rest of the house and accomplish that airy feel. We positioned the sunroom off the great room area. This way the two other decks had their own purpose and identity and both decks allowed access to the screened porch. We were also able to match the cedar siding exactly and the gable ends tied in perfectly. We carried the same cedar inside the ceiling of the screened porch.

Design rendering of the shed roof design which was chosen

These Potomac, MD homeowners chose Fiberon Horizon composite flooring, it actually looks a lot like the Ipe color rosewood and is lower maintenance. The railing of the porch matches on the inside and outside. The homeowners chose a vinyl railing system with black powder coated aluminum balusters made by Deckorators. The top of the railing has a rail cap that matches the floor.

Before the re-decking

We also re-decked the 18-year-old decks. One deck is 15×14 and the other is 20×14. The end dimensions of the addition of the screened porch added an additional 20 x 10 x 14 of lovely, enjoyable space for these homeowners. Now these Potomac, MD homeowners have a beautifully constructed, nicely furnished place to relax and enjoy the views of their large back yard.

After re-decking

If you are considering a re-model, a re-deck or a new construction give us a ring at Archadeck of Maryland a call today for a free estimate.

Watch this job come to life in front of your eyes.