Rotted ledger board on deck


Old 08-18-20, 06:49 PM
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Unhappy Rotted ledger board on deck

In the process of prepping to restain our deck, I decided to replace a couple of boards with minor rot/wear near the house. It was to my surprise that I discovered the ledger board rotted along most of the top of it. It looks like the original builders attached it directly to the vinyl siding, there was no flashing over it and no gap between the house and the nearest board which obviously was preventing drainage. In hindsight I'm amazed it's as good as it is.

My question is what is the easiest way for me to correct this? We are on a limited budget due to health issues, and this was supposed to be an "easy" project to improve the look of our house. Well, it got a bit more complicated now...but I obviously need to make it right.

I've included photos. The first is a closeup of the rotted ledger board:

Second and third pictures are looking at the deck from below:

underneath rotted area

Fourth is a wider shot of entire deck:

The deck is appx. 7'x8', it's looking pretty rough right now as I'm in the process of removing the old stain, but it still feels very stable and is in good repair/appearance as far as I can tell with the exception of what I found today.

I appreciate any advice you have.
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Old 08-18-20, 07:20 PM
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I think there may be more problems there than you know. The siding should not be behind the ledger. There should be a z flashing behind the siding, over the ledger. And hopefully it is not bolted to concrete block... It should be bolted to the rim joist.

The only way I see this being fixed is for you to build a beam under the deck joists... Maybe 2 ft from the ledger. Support that beam with 6x6 posts using the beam span tables listed in the DCA6 Prescriptive deck guide. You should install blocking between joists above the beam and add connectors to the the joists to the beam.

Once it is supported, you can remove the joist hangers and cut the ledger out. You will want to completely remove all of it. Then cut the siding off about 1 3/4" above the ledger line. Inspect the wall framing for rot and repair as needed.

Remove a minimum of one row of siding above your cut line. Cover the wall (behind the ledger) with a WRB or an ice and water shield membrane. Determine the distance from the joist ends to the house. Let's say it is 2 3/8"". That will mean you need to mount a treated 1x on the house first (3/4" thick) and then the new ledger (1 1/2" thick). Once it is in place, new hangers can be installed.

The ledger itself and the way it is bolted to the house becomes unimportant as long as the beam and posts supporting it remains a permanent feature.
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