Account for Expanding and Contracting of Wood The most important reason to have a spacing gap is to allow the boards the room to expand and contract naturally. Wood, by nature, expands and contracts when there are seasonal humidity changes and the wood begins to absorb or expel moisture.

Is it normal for new deck boards to crack?

Although cracking on a deck isn’t attractive, it’s usually just a normal sign of aging. If the cracks are less than six inches long, all you need to do is fill them in with latex wood filler and then finish off the deck with sealant.

Are decks supposed to have gaps?

Proper deck board spacing should have a 1/8-inch gap after the decking has dried out. If you install your decking using wet boards, pressure-treated decking that has not yet dried out, then you should install them with no gap as a gap will be created as they dry and shrink. Deck spacing isn’t anything to take lightly.

Is it normal for wood deck to split?

Decking splits as it dries. As the water evaporates from the wood in the sun, the surface wood shrinks cracking around the un-shrunk core wood or fasteners. The solution to prevent decking from splitting is controlling the pace the wood dries and providing room around the fasteners for the decking to shrink.

How do you fill gaps between decking boards?

4) How to Fill Gaps in Decking

While you might be tempted to fill in gaps in your decking with wood filler or caulk, the natural movement of the boards can eventually cause the materials to break loose and make the gaps even worse. However, you can use rope to easily fill the gaps.

Should deck boards be butted together?

We recommend butting treated deck boards together because as the moisture dries from the wood, the boards will shrink and naturally form gaps to allow water drainage. (Depending on moisture content, cedar, cypress and especially hardwood decking may require deliberate spacing for consistent joint sizes.)

What is the standard gap between decking boards?

Make sure you keep a gap between decking boards to let water drain away and allow for movement. A gap of 10mm between deck boards and external walls of adjacent buildings is recommended for drainage. Board spacing depends on the width of the board but a guide is 3-4mm for 90mm boards and 5-6mm for 140mm boards.

What will fill in a gap between the porch frame and siding?

A foam rod designed to fill large gaps. You should find backer rod in the same aisle as the caulk at your local big-box home improvement store. If you can’t find it, just ask.

What happens if you don’t leave gaps in decking?

Rain can prove especially detrimental to wood decking if it doesn’t have a place to drain off the deck. When there are no gaps between the boards, this moisture remains trapped which can lead to issues like rot and mold.

Should deck boards overhang?

A one to two inch overhang beyond the outer fascia board is sufficient. This means the installed deck boards should have at least 1.75 to 2.75” overhang before the fascia is installed.

What can I do if the boards on my deck are too close together?

Quote from the video:
Quote from Youtube video: You can use a hand tool in some situations. Called a backer board scoring. Night these are available at most local hardware and flooring stores.

Can you put deck boards tight together?

There is no reason to put a gap between the ends (also known as butt ends or butt joints) of wood deck boards. Wood, both softwood and hardwood, is dimensionally stable in length regardless of temperature, humidity or moisture content. Keep the butt ends as tight as possible when installing wood decking.

Do deck boards shrink or expand?

Deck boards will shrink, and not only that, they will even expand. Fibers have the ability to hold moisture in them. So when the outside environment is humid, the fibers collect moisture and expand, leading the boards to expand. In the dryer seasons, they lose moisture and shrink as a result.

Should deck boards be pressure treated?

Pressure-treated lumber is the logical choice for the structural part of your deck—the posts, joists, beams and other members you normally don’t see. Pressure-treated lumber can support more weight and span longer distances than cedar, redwood or other woods commonly used for building decks.

Why is my deck buckling?

Just like warping, bowing occurs when moisture leaves the boards causing the wood to shrink. By adding moisture back into the wood, you can correct the warping with a little bit of pressure. Add water to the board until it starts to pool. Leave it sitting on the surface for roughly 15 minutes before wiping it away.