Tag Archives: Warner Robins GA deck builder

Top 5 reasons not to be your own contractor by Archadeck of Central GA

Macon GA screened porch with fireplace
It is important to let a professional take the reins and see to it that your outdoor dreams are brought to life in a timely manner with quality workmanship and materials.

When it comes to adding an outdoor living space to your home, there are certain things that should not be undertaken or decided upon without the help of an expert. These things are quality, structural expertise, cost, and safety. These are the aspects that may be lost when deciding to be your own general contractor for your structural outdoor project. I like to compare the pitfalls that homeowners experience when choosing to be their own general contractor to representing yourself in a trial with no prior experience of how the judicial system operates. A novice taking on their own defense would not be familiar with the judge, the district attorneys, or even how to present a case. All good intentions aside in order to represent yourself you need the guidance of an experienced professional with knowledge of the courtroom. The same can be said about an experienced contractor. A seasoned builder or contractor knows the business and how it operates, how to get the best values on the highest quality materials and how to avoid being pushed onto the back burner of the schedule.

5 reasons to not be your own general contractor

Archadeck of Central GA quality sub contractors
Archadeck of Central GA only uses sub-contractors that are experts in the quality and workmanship of their given trade.

1) Risk – if you are acting as your own contractor there will be substantial risks involved. These can range from the design, the construction and the people you hire to work for you. Being a homeowner and taking on these risks means there is no recourse for holding subcontractors accountable if something goes wrong. Since you are not licensed as a contractor you are accepting all the risk. In addition to the liability and danger involved if an accident such as a fire happens, your homeowner’s insurance does not cover the risk associated with deciding to take on the role of a general contractor. Reputable sub-contractors you seek to complete the work will require an up-to-date certificate of insurance showing you are covered in the event of an accident.

2) Expertise– the sub-contractors hired will have to be supervised and instructed. Questions like “how deep are the footings supposed to be”, and “how many nails should go in the joist” commonly arise. Knowledge of code requirements is also crucial when managing a building project. In order to play the role of a general contractor you must have knowledge and be well-versed in conveying the proper structural requirements to the subs when needed. Without the skill, experience and expertise; you will be left in the dark. This means when the inspections are completed and something doesn’t meet code, or is done incorrectly, you as the general contractor will have to fix it.

Archadeck
Our customers our priority one and we uphold the highest expectations of each contractor, safety and the highest quality materials.

3) Costs– licensed contractors have relationships with their suppliers. They deal with them on a regular basis and are repeat customers. This relationship between the contractor, the supplier and the sub-contractors helps facilitate honesty between the groups. Suppliers want good relationships with their contractors and sub-contractors because they want repeat business. This rapport means that they are more apt to be treated fairly on price and delivery versus doing business with a one-time customer. You are not likely to get the same discounts or prompt delivery as that of one their regular contractors.

4) Timing – suppliers will make sure the deliveries for the contractors they deal with as repeat customers on a regular basis are top priority. Deliveries for one time clients are generally placed last. The same can be said about the scheduling importance of your sub-contractors. Since yours is a one time job they will likely not have the same incentive to get the work completed in a timely manner as the jobs of their repeat contractors. They will prioritize their better relationships over your job of someone they are not familiar with and will likely never work for again. Building is a realm where contractors, subs and suppliers take care of their “own” before any others, much like a family would.

5) Quality – this is especially a concern where sub-contractors are concerned. Many quality subs already have specific contractors which they will only work for. It is difficult to find a good sub that will work for you as a one-time deal. The inability to hire quality sub-contractors will set the stage for inferior or sub-standard work, because all the quality workers are already scheduled on jobs for licensed contractors. This is a major pitfall for homeowners acting as their own general contractor because it can lead to problems in the future as a result of shoddy workmanship.

The best way to avoid these dilemmas is to hire a licensed general contractor to oversee your outdoor structure project. Archadeck of Central Georgia specializes in taking the pressure off of the homeowner and ensuring a safe and trained work environment with skilled sub-contractors, turn-key pricing and quality workmanship in a timely manner. If you are looking for an answer to “all of the above”, we can provide it for a lot less than you may expect. Contact Archadeck of Central Georgia to learn more and to discuss how we can bring your outdoor living dreams to life. Call for a free consultation (478) 745 – 2000
centralgeorgia@archadeck.net

See more of our award-winning outdoor living projects by visiting our deck gallery and  our outdoor living gallery located on our website. Quality you can see and feel in every project we build!

Archadeck of Central GA explores the differences in maintaining a pressure-treated deck with that of Ipe and composites

We cleaned and sealed this deck and railing in River North. Notice the solid white sealer on the railing.

Maintaining your outdoor living structure can be a big headache but it doesn’t have to be. The allure of an outdoor living space is relaxation. But in order to keep your outdoor space running smoothly and looking beautiful it will require some degree of maintenance. Some materials require more intensive maintenance than others. But keeping in time with your maintenance schedule is the difference between keeping your beloved outdoor structure looking like new and allowing it to look tired because of lack of maintenance. In fact, there are many low maintenance products available which maintain their like-new look without all the work.

All maintenance requirements are not created equal

Are you trying to decide between a pressure-treated, Ipe, or composite deck? Each material is characteristically beautiful in its own right, but the level of maintenance required on all three materials is quite different. Standard and premium grade pressure-treated decks require pressure or chemical washing followed by an application of a sealer which will protect the lumber from absorbing water. This is usually required on an annual basis or possibly more depending on the amount of exposure to the sun. Pressure-treated boards have the capacity to soak up a great deal of water. Humidity and moisture mixed together will cause the rapid expansion and contraction of the wood which will cause your deck to weather faster which is why it is so important to seal your pressure-treated deck. Vertical elements of your pressure-treated deck don’t require the level of maintenance that the floor, steps and rail cap will, this is because the water does not sit on the wood but runs off.

Georgia on my mind with this Central GA composite deck
These Central GA homeowners have Georgia on their mind when using this stunning composite deck.

With pressure-treated decks maintenance is the key to keeping the deck beautiful and structurally sound. If you miss a year or two it can ultimately cause irreversible damage. On the other hand, if you love the look of natural wood there is another option called Ipe. Ipe is a dense and exotic looking hardwood that requires less maintenance than other wood options for your deck.

Ipe pool deck in Warner Robins GA
Ipe is perfect for use around water features because of it;s density and resistant to water that would cause other wood mediums to degrade rapidly.

Ipe is a Brazilian hardwood that is literally harder than nails. Its density makes it desirable in outdoor structure settings. Ipe is so dense that it needs to be pre-drilled before the pieces can be connected. We recommend sealing an Ipe deck with a good sealer to retain the material’s dark, rich tone. If Ipe is left to weather it will age to a beautiful grey patina over time. The maintenance required for Ipe is not as tedious as that of pressure-treated wood. You can let Ipe go for a few seasons and then seal it and it will then look like new again.  Good quality sealers can be found by checking with Consumer Reports, but we also highly recommend Cabot stains and sealers, and Olympic also makes a good quality sealer as well.

The key to successfully sealing any wood deck is to do so when it is dry. Make sure the deck remains dry after application up to 48 hours if possible. You will want to check the forecast before starting your maintenance. A good rule of thumb to check to see if it is time to seal your wood deck is to sprinkle a little water on it, if the water beads up then it is not necessary to apply sealer. When the sprinkle test reveals that the water blends in with the deck within 15-20 seconds of application then it is time to treat your wood deck.

We replaced and sealed the flooring only on this deck. The railing is original with the original sealer

One of the lowest maintenance options is composite decking. Today’s composites come in a wide array of finishes, textures and tones that rival the look of real wood. Composite decks do not require sealing or annual maintenance to keep them looking new but they do need to be cleaned periodically to remove dirt and debris. Most brands only need soap and water cleanup to keep them looking new. Common sense practices come into play when talking about maintaining composites. Materials that stain such as ketchup, grease spillage from the grill and even wet leaves should be cleaned up immediately to avoid damage to the deck’s surface. Compare your reaction time when dealing with composites to that of any surface in the home. If you would rush to clean it up on an indoor hardwood floor, then you should take the same care for any outdoor flooring material. The end result will be a composite deck that stands the test of time and looks new for many years to come.

Forsyth GA Ipe deck
Ipe delivers beauty and strength ; the beauty and the beast of decking material.

If you are on the fence about what material to choose for your new deck, take the amount of time you are willing to spend on maintaining that deck to keep it performing and looking like new into consideration. Contact Archadeck of Central Georgia to learn more about the material options that would best suit your needs, your wants and most of all your outdoor living lifestyle.

Call for a free consultation: (478) 745 – 2000
Email:centralgeorgia@archadeck.netStephen Denton, owner of Archadeck of Central GA

To see more inspiring images of decks built with various medias, visit our wood deck gallery, our Ipe deck gallery and our composite deck gallery located on our website.

A hot tub deck in Centerville, GA quickly becomes the center of attention in this backyard

spa-deck- macon-GA
This spa deck in Macon, GA is a pristine example of a sunken hot tub deck. Note the clean design and dramatic view.

It is always good to hear from past customers especially when they are adding on to their project. One of our “in progress” projects we are working on is for a customer we built a beautiful deck for a few years back. They called us to add a portion to his existing deck in order to accommodate a hot tub. Hot tub decks are the ultimate spot for relaxation and comfort.

This customer needed additional space built onto their existing deck for their new hot tub. Adding a hot tub to an existing deck is not as easy as it seems. Hot tubs can hold in excess of 4,000 pounds of water. Water weighs approximately 8.35 pounds per gallon and an average hot tub can hold 600-700 gallons of water. When you add-on the weight associated with using a hot tub that can push the weight up to over 5,000 pounds depending on the number of people your hot tub can accommodate. Adding a hot tub to your deck requires substantial structural reinforcement underneath in order to safely operate the spa and keep your deck structurally sound. We always build the foundation and platform to bear the weight of the hot tub. We also always build the area to easily take on an 8′ x 8′ spa; this way if you change the hot tub out in the future the platform will still work.

Hot tub deck and outdoor fireplace combo.
This decks design incorporates the elements of water and fire with a spa flanked by a stunning outdoor fireplace located on the adjacent patio.

In this particular project the deck’s location and the home’s low to grade design gave us no other option than to place the hot tub on the top of the deck. We often build hot tub decks with the hot tub sunken which not only delivers a dramatic look, it is also recommended for homeowners using their spa for therapeutic reasons because it is easier to enter and exit the hot tub when it is sunken. Whether you choose to have the hot tub sunken or at bench height both will help address the individual functional issue of your space.

We often use bench height hot tub installations. When we do this we often build a bench directly next to the hot tub so the homeowner can simply swing over the bench and slide into the hot tub easily. We can also add the bench to the edge of the deck so the control panel is easily accessible when the hot tub needs maintenance. One dilemma with under deck installation is the difficulty in getting to the control panel and often times we construct a trap door to take care of this obstacle.

hot tub-deck-macon GA
This bench height hot tub deck in Macon, GA is even a hit with the family dog!

When our customers ask if they should purchase their hot tub before they have the deck built, it is not a prerequisite. Our main concern is that we are aware of the shape of the hot tub you are intending to purchase, and we can begin building to suit that shape. Another heavily requested item for hot tub decks is the addition of a pergola over the hot tub. Pergolas look great when paired with hot tubs and offer added privacy and shade to the homeowners; a winning combination indeed.

Stephen Denton, owner of Archadeck of Central GA
Stephen Denton, owner of Archadeck of Central GA

If you are considering the addition of a hot tub to your deck, whether you intend to build a new deck or add a space large enough to place a hot tub, we can help. Our unique deck designs and expert craftsmanship will have you soaking up in style and safety. Contact Archadeck of Central Georgia today.
Call for a free consultation:
(478) 745 – 2000
Email: centralgeorgia@archadeck.net

See more stylish hot tub and pool decks by visiting our decks photo galleries located on our website.

Archadeck of Central Georgia looks at the many faces of synthetic decking

Warner Robins GA composite deck
This composite deck in Warner Robins, GA exemplifies the beauty of composites.

Among the many options available when choosing the materials for your new deck or re-deck, synthetic decking is often one of the top choices. Within synthetic decking, there are quite a range of choices and all are not the same. Synthetic decking comes in many colors, finishes, dimensional designs and brands. Synthetic decking includes composite decking, solid PVC and capstock  decking, each one of which has certain similarities as well as differences. We have outlined each of  of the three below.

Composite decking

Your traditional wood/plastic composite material, such as TimberTech, Trex ,  and Fiberon composites, have a combination of  wood fiber and resin. This pairing of wood and plastic sets the stage for durability that wood  has never been able to provide. TimberTech’s Reliaboard for example, resists splintering and rotting and never requires staining or painting. These 1st generation composites are very economical as well. The downside is that since there is the presence of wood, stains can occur. Wine, oil and grease can stain the deck because of the wood, the board is porous. High traffic areas are also a concern and are prone to mark over time . Making sure your deck builder uses a high-quality composite decking material, such as the ones mentioned above is critical. These products are covered by warranties that exceed those of any wooden deck on the market, so rest assured composite itself is a solid choice for decking.

Fiberon deck in Macon GA
This Fiberon deck in Macon, GA includes a custom pergola in the design.

Solid PVC decking

Solid PVC decking such as AZEK is impervious to just about anything you can dish out. From red wine, to grease from your grill and even the kid’s fruit punch. This cellular PVC product offers superior stain resistance, scratch resistance, fade resistance,  and split resistance. It is also insect, and mold/mildew resistant. There is never a worry from your patio furniture or your pet scratching your deck with solid PVC. The only downfall is that since it is solid PVC (plastic) it may not look as authentic as natural wood. We use a large amount of AZEK decking and our customers love it. AZEK even offers a line of railing to compliment their large color selection.

Capstock decking

Capstock is what we also refer to as a wrapped or covered product. This takes the benefits of composite as the core and wraps it with a PVC covering. This product can be seen in the Fiberon Horizon line. Capstock uses the best of both worlds through superior stain, fade, scratch,  and insect resistance and still giving you the beauty of real wood. The veining and colorations  used in the Trex Transcends line are so realistic and beautiful it will leave you having to lean in a little closer to see whether or not the product is real wood with hues that even mimic the look of exotic Ipe, and other tropical hardwoods.

Composite deck Chippendale pattern Milledgeville GA
We installed this Milledgeville, GA composite deck using a unique Chippendale pattern.

No matter which of these synthetics you choose to build your dream deck,  each one is packed with versatility and beauty. Choosing a synthetic doesn’t need to be incredibly expensive. Archadeck of Central Georgia is a trusted and respected leader in the community. We have the experience to consult effectively with our customers on material selections. We are well-versed and really know the business of synthetics top to bottom. We can help you select and choose the right material to suit your needs, your lifestyle and your budget.

Contact us today to learn more about synthetic and other outdoor living material options. Call for a free consultation: (478) 745 – 2000 centralgeorgia@archadeck.net

See more beautiful images of synthetic decks by visiting our composite and PVC deck gallery located on our website.