What size nails for my deck.

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Old 08-24-15, 08:16 AM
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What size nails for my deck.

I have a 20 x 18 deck, the foundation is solid and I am just replacing the surface wood. The railing will be done next at a later time. I ordered Pressure treated (southern yellow pine) 5/4 x 6 wood. The current deck is nailed down 3 nails per joist using 2.5" long nails. I will probably just use 2 nails per joist.

I decided I am going to use a framing nailer with ring shank nails. I know screws are generally the best idea. The ring shank nail is essentially a screw for a nail gun as the screws are coiled.

My question is what length nail should I be using the options are 2.37" or 3"?
 
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Old 08-24-15, 09:29 AM
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I would go for the 2.3" but also make sure you are getting fasteners coated for use in modern pressure treated lumber. Locally I only have bright ring shank nails available which would quickly rust if used with treated wood..
 
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Old 08-24-15, 11:35 AM
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You would be far better off with ACQ approved screws.
 
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Old 08-24-15, 12:54 PM
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agreed with joe that stainless decker screws would be the best choice since they won't get pushed out by water cycling in the wood, and will pull the boards tighter to the joists when installed properly; most 18V impact drivers should have no problem driving them into the wood you've got and aren't particularly expensive anymore. Also, screws will ensure a good grip even if you happen to hit an existing hole in the joist where the old nail was pulled out (probably unlikely to happen with any frequency, but it is possible).

Are the nails you're planning on using ring shanks, or are they twist nails (being collated in a coil isn't the same as the nails themselves having a twist to them)?
While either of those are an improvement over smooth nails, they can still eventually push out of the wood, but won't do so nearly as fast. If you insist on using nails make sure they're hot-dipped galvanized (not electro-plated)
 
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Old 08-24-15, 02:11 PM
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I plan on using Hitachi Hot Dipped Galvanized Ring Shank Plastic Collated Nails.

The reason for the nail gun is its way way faster than screws, 2000 nails will only be $38. I know screws are generally the best option but these nails stick like glue and almost never pop up.


Shop Hitachi 2-3/8-in x 0.113-Gauge Hot Dipped Galvanized Ring Shank Plastic Collated Nails at Lowes.com

*** Lowes lists as electro galvanized but they are hot dipped***
 
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Old 08-24-15, 03:19 PM
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I would just flat out refuse to install decking boards with nails unless they signed a disclaimer.
Yes it's faster, no there not going to hold as good or going to be able to be removed as easy if a board needs replacing.
 
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Old 08-24-15, 03:31 PM
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I use those Hitachi nails in my Senco round head nailer, and have never had a nail back out on deck boards yet. They will be a bear to remove, as Joe says, should you ever need to replace a board. Set the nailer to where the nails are slightly below the surface.
 
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Old 08-24-15, 04:32 PM
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Another thing to be aware of is the size of the holes left by the old nails. If the collated nails you're using are smaller in diameter then it'd be best to use a different pattern/spacing.

Depending on what you're pulling up with the old board, here's a chart to see the size of the old hardware.

Online Conversion - Common Nails, Smooth Shank
 
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Old 08-25-15, 08:19 AM
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Thanks for the info. I am still mulling over using the nail gun. I do have access to a screw gun (collated scewdriver). I don't see any nails that say they are approved for pressure treated lumber, if they exist that might be a better route. I just really don't want to screw in around 1500 screw by myself.
 
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Old 08-25-15, 12:34 PM
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Your not going to be very happy replacing those 1500 nails with screws in a couple of years if they don't hold like you think they will. Screws are "cheap" insurance against that happening. I am still replacing nails that were used on my deck that the prior owner thought were a good idea.
 
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Old 08-25-15, 02:09 PM
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prior post should of said 1500 screws not nails. I got a screw gun today from a friend and found counter sunk galvanized nails that are ACQ approved for pressure treated lumber. The automatic screwer isn't as fast as a framing nailer, I should be able to put down 40 screws in 1 minute.
 
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