Some folks have a patio that’s showing its age and wonder if it’s possible to build a deck on top without ripping everything up and starting from scratch. The answer:
Yes, it’s not only possible, it’s easier and less expensive than a traditional deck because no posts are involved.
The deck will be a few inches higher than the existing concrete. Any doors leading onto the patio should be above the new deck height. The condition of the patio isn’t usually a concern (the whole idea of the deck is to cover it) but if it’s unsettled and shifting a traditional post system may be in order.
There are two big advantages to building directly over cement. The first is cost. There is very little in the way of prep work (the old patio doesn’t have to be destroyed and taken away) and posts are not required to keep the new deck secure. Both factors are easy on the wallet. The second big advantage is the ease of installation. If you’re a do-it-yourselfer, it’s one of the easiest deck projects to tackle. The digging and installation of posts is a tough job that calls for professional experience. The average handyman can forge ahead with confidence knowing posting and the difficulties it brings are not required here.
Sleeper joists are typically laid flat (as opposed to regular deck joists) to minimize the height differential between the existing patio and the new deck board level. They are shimmed as necessary to level and attached using a hammer drill and concrete screws. Then the deck floor is built on top as usual. Existing stairs leading to the patio are built over and raised in a similar way.
If you have more questions about decks or other issues we’re happy to answer them. Call 613-736-1122 or hit the chat button on the right during business hours.