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The Fundamentals of a Good Deck and Dock Design

July 19, 2022 | Comments Off on The Fundamentals of a Good Deck and Dock Design

In designing a deck and dock, there are some basics to remember. For instance, you should consider the dock’s location near the water. You may better serve a dock built in shallow water by safety railings. Safety railings are also beneficial for docks with steps or surface water. Once you’ve considered these details, you’ll be well on designing a good deck and dock.

Common configurations

There are several different kinds of a standard deck and dock configurations. Some are straight out over the water, while others have a longer, narrower extension that extends into the water. Each one has its benefits. One of the most popular is an F-style dock, which has two parallel extensions, allowing you to access your watercraft from either end. This is an exemplary configuration if you have more than one watercraft. You can also find out more at the decks and docks west palm beach.

One of the most important considerations when designing a dock is the approach. The approach can be level, inclined away from the building, or depressed toward it. It should be long enough for a turning radius that allows a large vehicle to drive right up to it. Additionally, it should be long enough for the length of the product to be unloaded without hitting the sides of the dock. If you don’t have a truck that fits on the side of your dock, consider using a side-by-side loading configuration. This method enables you to do what would otherwise require two trips.

Another standard deck and dock configuration is a floating dock. Floating docks are great for fishing and boarding boats and are available in several types of decking. However, they require a lot of maintenance. You must buy special installation equipment and adjust them as water levels change. In addition, they will need more care than piling docks. If you’re planning to build a floating dock, check local regulations before installing it.

A T-shaped dock works well for a swimming or fishing dock. This configuration creates separate swimming and fishing areas on both sides of the dock. Young children can safely swim here, and the space is sufficient to accommodate several personal watercraft. A T-shaped dock is generally longer than the conventional type, with the decking parallel to the shoreline and connecting at the top. Commonly, this configuration is used for climate control and product protection but is not common because of high construction costs and vehicle exhaust pollution.

Common materials

Aluminum or PVC decking can be an attractive choice. However, it can be expensive and gets hot in the sun. In addition, aluminum is prone to rust and denting and is not mainly aesthetic. It is also more costly than other materials, such as composite materials. Listed below are some common materials for a deck and dock. 

Composite materials are popular with marinas. These materials are durable and have a wood-like look but don’t rot or deteriorate over time. Composite docks last ten or twenty years before needing to be refinished. They also have no problem with splinters and nail poppers. In addition, they require minimal maintenance since they are made from recycled plastics and wood scraps.

Vinyl or composite materials are the best options for low-maintenance docks. Both are lightweight and durable and don’t have the mildew issue that wood can have. They can also withstand scratches. The downside to vinyl is its price, but its low maintenance makes it an excellent choice for a dock. While it can be costly, it is a worthwhile investment for the longevity of your dock.

Regarding decking material, wood and concrete are the most common choices. While both are beautiful and can be surprisingly expensive, they each have advantages. Wood is warm and aesthetically pleasing and blends nicely with a wooded cottage environment. Cedar is particularly appealing because of its tannins and oils. However, it is prone to decay, and treated wood is not a good option if your budget is tight.

Composite decking is made of wood fibers and plastic. It does not require staining and cleaning like wood. However, it is prone to mildew and mold. Plastic also has a shinier appearance than wood. Plastic decking is a better option if you have kids or pets that might be playing on the dock. This option is also low-maintenance. But remember that the plastic can be susceptible to mildew, which may damage the wood fibers.