Questions About Deck And Patio

What are the best boards to use for building a deck?

I want to build a 16" x 16" deck. What size boards should I use?

-Mike

Can I add a patio before adding a new room?

We will eventually add on an addition to our home. Due to the cost of an addition, we would like to first have a patio poured. Would the contractor be able to set the addition foundation up against this slab? Pouring the slab to the house probably doesn't make sense.

-Garrett

How much weight can my cement-block wall hold?

I want to hang a hammock on my lanai/porch, but the walls are cement block covered with stucco. Will cement block hold that much weight (2 people = 300 lbs) safely? Can you recommend the best way to do this if so?

-Dan

Should I be concerned about lowering my deck 1/8 inch?

My contractor left a 1/8th inch gap between the cross-beams and support posts of the deck. The beams are only attached by bolts. He said he would remove the bolts and let the deck weight drop it down to the support posts. Should I be concerned that will torque pressure on the deck and house?

-Jimmy

How should I attach a new deck to my house?

I want to build a deck off of our house, near the kitchen. I am thinking about attaching it to the house on one side and using cement blocks to support the other side. How should I attach the deck to the house? thank you.

Bill T. - Orlando, FL

How can a 13-year-old deck be rotted?

13 years ago we had a cedar deck built onto our new house. We have had it power washed and stained every other year. We have very little shade in the backyard so it's in the sun all the time. The last few years a lot of boards started to rot. We replaced them and some were just crumbling in our hands. Now the rest of the deck is rotting. How can this deck be rotting so quickly?

Shelley -- Plainsboro, NJ

Can bamboo flooring be installed over sheetrock?

I have a covered patio. I would like to put bamboo on the ceiling. Can I put the bamboo interlocking planks over the current sheetrock, or do I need to take the sheetrock down and apply directly to the studs?

John - Tampa, FL

Will concrete crack if you don't use a power tamper?

Will our concrete crack if we don't use a power tamper and do we need to use an expansion joint between the existing concrete and the new concrete pour? We have a concrete patio 18ft x 48" x 4" and want to extend it out the front by an additional 18ft x 42" x 8" ( 4" of gravel + 4" of concrete)

Does an unattached patio require a building permit?

Can I build a patio in the back yard that is not attached to the house and avoid needing a permit to do so? Just pea gravel and blocks. Thank you

How can I install ceramic tile over exterior concrete?

We have a concrete patio in our back yard that we would like to cover with ceramic tiles. How can I attach the tiles to the existing concrete patio? Can I use regular grout to to fill the gaps in the tile?