How can I make sure a deck extension is level with the old deck?

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Old 07-03-15, 10:03 PM
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How can I make sure a deck extension is level with the old deck?

Basically I'm wondering how I can get the two decks to line up properly. The yard is not perfectly straight; it's kinda sloping. I'm just nervous that it won't all line up once I'm done. Is there anything different I have to do versus building a new deck? Thanks all!
 
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Old 07-04-15, 05:01 AM
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Not sure I totally understand Have the decks already been built or are you in the planning stage?
 
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Old 07-04-15, 07:01 AM
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Lining up the decks would highly depend on you bolting a ledger to the old deck and working from it to level it to your posts. It won't matter whether the yard is level or not, your posts will be rough set higher than needed, then cut once the band is applied level all around. We often start decks at grade level and once we go out 12' we are sometimes 15 to 20' above grade in the mountains.
 
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Old 07-04-15, 08:02 AM
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Pour the footings & set the base brackets first. If you are going to use a ledger, install that too. You have to create a reference point from top of the existing deck to the closest footings. Chances are that the closest footings are within a couple feet of the existing deck. Put a temporary post next to one of the footings. Place a 4' level between the top of the existing deck & the temporary post. Mark the bottom of the level on the post. That will be the height of the extension deck. Measure the distance between that mark & the top of the footing. Subtract the thickness of the decking & the width of the joist from that number. That will be the size, of the post. Repeat that process for all the footings. Use a 2x4 with the level on top, if the footings are too far away to use the level, by itself.

Edit: If you really want to get fancy, install temporary posts next to each footing. When it gets dark, shoot a laser to each of the posts, from the top of the deck. Mark each one & do the calculations, in the morning.
 
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